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In Cold Pursuit

Dead Dry

Earth Colors

Killer Dust

Fault Line

An Eye for Gold


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The Mind of the Geologist

In the course of writing the Em Hansen mysteries, I’ve done a lot of thinking about geologists as a group, and I’ve begun to observe certain traits that make it possible for us to do the things we do (such as look at a flat map and see a three-dimensional object that’s miles underground).  

The funny thing is that when I set out to write these books, the idea was to (have fun writing mystery stories and) help the layperson understand geologists, but as often I’m called upon to help geologists understand themselves.   It makes sense, I suppose…back in the Summer of Love, this was called consciousness raising, and geologists have consciousness, or most of them do.  

But, you say, that was hippies, and geologists are humorless, stodgy scientists, aren’t they? Um, not from where I’m sitting, they (we) aren’t.

A year ago David Simon of the Association of Engineering Geologists invited me to put my ideas down on paper. You can write whatever you want as often as you want, he told me (does that sound stodgy?   Foolhardy, maybe, but stodgy? No!). So I put together a series of four essays about geologists.

1. Spatial Thinking with a Difference: An Unorthodox Treatise on the Mind of the Geologist (PDF)

Note: You need Acrobat Reader software to open the above document, a free download from Adobe

Spatial Thinking with a Difference: An Unorthodox Treatise on the Mind of the Geologist (HTML version)

2. What Women Bring to Geology (PDF)

3. The Geologist as Detective (PDF)

4. A Note on Geophilosophy (PDF)

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