There's a paper I don't want to write. Well, I do, because the subject is fascinating to me, and I get to make maps for illustrations (yay!) but my thoughts are all tangled at the moment. I'm very much a perfectionist; I have this fear that if I start writing, it won't come out the way I intended, and I'll ruin the whole thing. Which is why I've never written a book, even though I've been told numerous times that I have the capability. Come to think of it, it's also why I never ended up at SFAI.

I often watch a show called Seconds from Disaster. It's about all these horrible things that happen - airplane crashes, train wrecks - and the chain of events caused them. Almost always, it's something tragically minute, like an imperfection in a fan blade measuring 1/50000 of an inch. It's just incredible to think that something so small could cause so much suffering and death. I think my fascination with the show stems from realizing how little control we have over the wider picture - and simultaneously, how much. For example, the passenger in row 25 had no control over the cracked fan blade that sent them plunging to their death. But the person who forged the metal unwittingly had the control over the lives of innocent people.

Nothing is truly an accident; everything has a root cause.