They’ve got Stephen Hawking’s wife Lucy searching out great science writing books at the Times.
“Putting some human element into it is very important,” says Leonard Susskind, Professor of Physics at Stanford University and author of The Black Hole War. “When I write, I always talk about science through stories.” Susskind, one of the originators of String Theory, probably the most difficult concept in modern physics for a lay person to understand, describes his thought process as one of imagination and explanation: “I think in terms of explaining to someone who doesn’t know; to an outsider.”
Just as imagination and physics may seem an odd pairing, intuition is not a word that many people associate either with the research work of scientists or the translation into familiar language that popular science writing represents. It is, however, key to the process of both.
I don’t find imagination and physics “an odd pairing”. Frankly, I couldn’t have one without the other.