Thanks to Christie Aschwandan’s Courage Camp in late August that convinced several of us that freelance science writing can be sustainable, financially and personally, I’m still riding that wave of inspiration. Since the digital platform is saved into perpetuity, I might as well broadcast my idealized bio, because it won’t ever really “go away”, and maybe just maybe I will walk into it. Watch out, world
Amy West can be found in every medium that you get your news: radio, television, and print. Her expertise and work in the world’s oceans has meant she’s live hosted a manned submarine mission to the Marianas and Puerto Rican Trench for the Science Channel, posted the first photos of the megamouth shark in its natural environment, discovered an elusive species of the chinchilla narwhal while on assignment for National Geographic, and started the podcast series called Secret Sounds of Science. She travels annually to schools, workshops, to inspire outside the box thinking on why to choose meaningful work, and how to balance a life/work career when working for oneself.
Her monthly advice column “Just for the Halibut” has inspired so much change in the restaurants that serve seafood in the central coastal California region that her columns have been syndicated and printed in newspapers in 30 countries. These articles gave rise to her New York Times and bestseller and Pulitzer Prize-winning book, Leave the Damn Fish Alone.
She took most of the earnings from this book and started a philanthropic foundation that supports budding science writers get started in a world that doesn’t want to pay them.
She teamed up with the Cousteau Foundation to produce the first film of “life” in the oceans found on Europa. She was recognized by Time magazine as one of the most fascinating and influential humans of the 20th century.
She works for Radiolab, photographs and writes for National Geographic, and travels the world to help produce the video and BBC series, The World is Your Oyster. In her free time, which is usually 2 months in the summer and 2 months in the winter, she’s racing mountain bikes and snowboards, and accompanying her marine biologist husband on deep-sea missions around the global. She splits her creative writing time between the Colorado mountain cabin, and her coastal California home, which is mostly an edible backyard