David Dobbs, author of Reef Madness and the #1 Kindle-Single bestseller My Mother’s Lover, writes features and essays for publications including the Atlantic, the New York Times Magazine, National Geographic, Wired, the Guardian, and other publications. Several of his stories have been chosen for leading anthologies, the most recent being ”Beautiful Brains,” a National Geographic story about the adaptive teen brain, which was included in both Ecoo’s Best American Science Writing 2012 and Mariner’s Best American Science and Nature Writing 2012.
Two stories that he originally published as blog posts at his blog, Neuron Culture, were also recently selected for anthologies: Free Science, One Paper at a Time, included in the Best Science Writing Online 2012, and “The Tight Collar: The New Science of Choking Under Pressure,” chosen for Best American Sports Writing 2011.
His much-discussed feature for the Atlantic, “The Orchid Children,” chosen for Ecco/HarperPerennial’s Best American Science Writing 2010, was the seed for the book he is now writing, The Orchid and the Dandelion (forthcoming from Crown). It will explore how genes and culture help shape temperament, behavior, evolution, and destiny.
His most recent previous book, Reef Madness (Pantheon, 2005), looks at a long argument that Charles Darwin had about how coral reefs form; Oliver Sacks found it “brilliantly written, almost unbearably poignant.” He lives in Vermont, with frequent trips to New York, London, DC, and other points distant.