Tuesday, December 27, 2016

Speaker: Frank DeCourten

Frank DeCourten Link
Frank DeCourten: Professor, geologist, author of books, articles, and technical publications

Workshop Title: Telling Nature's Story: transforming scientific research into literature, Session 3, 2:30 - 3:30

Lunchtime Author Round table, 12:00 - 1:00

Workshop Description: This session will explore the distinctions between peer-reviewed technical writing and natural history literature using examples from a broad array of authors.  We will consider all aspects of the creative process in both types of writing, including research methods, conceptual formatting, draft preparation, review process, editing, publishing, and distribution.  Examples will be drawn primary from literature that explores the origin and interpretation of natural landscapes of the American West.

Frank L. DeCourten has been Professor of Earth Science at Sierra College in Rocklin, California since 1993.

DeCourten has received an impressive number of awards for teaching, research, and citizenship. His research has resulted in 19 technical publications in geology and paleontology, four books (Earth Essays, Shadows of Time, Dinosaurs of Utah 2nd edition, and The Broken Land) and he has produced 3 educational videos. In addition, Frank wrote Terra Sierra, a quarterly natural history column that appeared in the Sierra Sun newspaper in the Tahoe-Truckee region and is currently being compiled into book form. His latest writing project is Geology of Northern California, a textbook supplement that has been utilized in more than a dozen colleges and universities across northern California. An addition module is currently being produced for southern California.

amazon.com description:

"The desert may seem timeless from within the Yellow Circle tonight, but the permanence of the surrounding landscape is only an illusion. Even the land is alive here, constantly changing and evolving as do all living things. Nothing here is 'finished.' Everything around us—the plants, the animals, the rocks, and the terrain itself—is in the process of becoming something else. And, of course, so are we. None of us around the campfire tonight are the same people we were yesterday, or will be tomorrow."—from the book

The Broken Land surveys the geological phenomena of the magnificent Great Basin landscape of western Utah, Nevada, eastern California, and adjacent regions. Each chapter focuses on a locality or area that provides insight into the deep history of one of North America's most remote regions—one of its continental margins. It is the only book available covering the geology of the entire Great Basin. Written for anyone with a casual to serious interest in natural history, The Broken Land conveys Frank DeCourten's awe at the story written in the rock of the basin.

Highlighted Review:

on May 8, 2010
Format: Paperback|Verified Purchase

If you really want to understand the geologic history of the Great Basin, this is the book. The author, Frank L. DeCourten, is to be thanked for writing such a comprehensive yet readable book. I am planning to teach a physical geology course next year at my local community college which is on the edge of the Great Basin. I have been reading everything I can get my hands on to bring me up to date on the geology of Great Basin to enable me to make the course more relevant and to help me lead field trips. Mr. DeCourten's book is just the ticket. I read it once from cover to cover and now am reading parts of it again. 
This book is not just for teachers but also for students and those with a passion for earth science and the Great Basin. Thanks so much Mr. DeCourten. I know he won't get rich off this book, but his effort is so appreciated. It brings John Mcphee's Basin and Range up to date and fills in the details.

1 comment:

  1. Most of all in my childhood, I was intrigued by the research, until I grew up and understand how difficult it is. Your book became a gift for my mother, and she said that she was very impressed by your reflections and observations while exploring geological phenomena. When I needed research, a simpler solution than trying to accept research paper help couldn't be for me. Since talented writers like you are few, but there is a lot of writing work and nobody can argue with that fact)