Photo by ClickFlashPhotos, via Flickr
Photo by ClickFlashPhotos, via Flickr

This is an Anniversary Post

A year ago today National Geographic Magazine launched this blog network, Phenomena, and I launched this blog. The idea for Only Human came from the realization that almost all the stories I write are about people — “what we’re made of, what we do, why we do it,” as I put it in my first post. My “human beat” turned out to be a hybrid of mostly genetics, neuroscience, and psychology.

I love blogging because it provides a space for me to practice my writing and reporting skills and to experiment with new forms, all with real-time feedback from smart readers. This year I’ve published 71 posts of many genres: narrative featureshistorical asideshard-core explanatory journalismcute-video clickbait, personal essaysnews from scientific conferences, and a Q&A. Each post has contained a story (hopefully, an interesting story) about science. This is not one of those posts.

This post celebrates the Phenomena anniversary with: 1) lists of the most popular and most underrated posts on Only Human; and 2) a short! reader survey to help me learn about who you guys are and what you like to read.

Most importantly, I’d like to give a warm and public thanks to the humans who have made my blogging year so rewarding — Jamie Shreeve and the other friendly overlords at NatGeo, my unbelievably sharp and distressingly prolific co-bloggers Brian Switek, Carl Zimmer, and Ed Yong, and to everybody who reads Only Human. I’m looking forward to year #2 and beyond.

Top 5 Most Popular Posts

Notice a pattern, much?


Top 5 Most Underrated Posts

These posts didn’t get much traffic but, IMO, should have.

2. Romania’s Science Problem: A Tale of Two Florins (Part 1 and Part 2)


Reader Survey!

If you have a few more moments, please help me learn about you by filling out this quick 10-question survey. (None of the questions are obligatory — tell me as much or as little as you like.)

Thanks, everybody!

(P.S. If you’re wondering about the aforementioned Gray Matters, it’s my weekly email newsletter, which goes out on Fridays. You can sign up here. It’s free and just for fun; I will NOT sell your email address to any other party.)