A Book that Changed My Life

September 12th, 2017 | Category: Announcements

I am proud to announce that I was recently a part of 9 Muses Photo’s A Book that Changed My Life project, “an open series focused on people and the books that changed their lives.” Dennis Sevilla took this photo of me with the book that changed my life:

Here’s my story:

James Gleick’s Chaos (Viking, 1987) changed my life. Quite simply, I was on a path, and after reading it I was on a different one. I was a music journalist. When I came across Chaos, I had spent a lot of time and effort becoming a music journalist. The book is about chaos theory. It’s about the disparate scientists who were working between the lines of different disciplines. It’s about sensitive dependence on initial conditions. It’s about how paths can change unexpectedly. Reading Chaos blew my head wide open. I was suddenly aware of so many other possibilities. I quit my job and went back to school. Now I teach college and write my own books. I still write about music, but now I write about a lot of other things. Also, after a few false starts with books that didn’t stick, Chaos turned me into a reader. I starting reading it 20 years ago this month, and I haven’t stopped reading since.

Having recently been interviewed about this book, I tried to focus on the fact that Chaos turned me into a reader. It’s the one that stuck.

You can see the rest of the series here. Many thanks to Dennis for including me in this project, my dude Tim Baker for hipping me to it, and of course to James Gleick.

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