My World and Welcome to It
Hey, you found me! Feel free to poke around, rummage through some stories and other clips, look under the seat cushions (if you find any change, it’s mine), and have as much fun as it’s possible to have on a writer’s homepage.
Oh: Bob or Robert? Robert Earle Howells is my professional byline and the name I was born with. And the guy you can write checks to. Otherwise, I’m a proud Bob.
The Ink Is Still Drying
I nabbed a contract last fall to write the copy for SpaceX’s new website. (SpaceX is Elon Musk’s private rocket company.) Translating rocketry lingo into everyday English was a challenge. I had to make the copy compelling for a general audience while avoiding the kind of dumbing-down that would roll space wonks’ eyeballs. And, of course, it had to be scrupulously accurate, to satisfy Elon and his engineers. It’s a complex site and took quite awhile to go live, but it’s finally up.
I have the cover story in the April 2013 issue of Popular Science. I love writing about technology that is imaginative, that stretches the boundaries of human potential. Such is certainly the case with SpaceX’s Falcon Heavy. When it launches later this year, it will be the world’s most powerful rocket—one that could someday take humans much farther into space than the space station or even the moon. My story leads off the magazine’s annual How It Works issue.
Writing about national parks is a specialty and a passion. Secrets of the National Parks (National Geographic Books; April 2013), highlights places that drive-through visitors to the parks might overlook. In other words, get outta your dang car and have a look around! I handled four chapters for the book covering Yosemite, Death Valley, Joshua Tree, and Channel Islands National Parks. As with my previous project for Nat Geo Books (Ten Best of Everything: National Parks) Nat Geo has tabbed me as national spokesdude, and I’ll be doing radio and print interviews to support the book.
I’m flexing my editorial chops again as managing editor of this custom digital/print/app magazine. Flagship Custom Publishing is a smart, lean company that knows how to nail a niche and reach readers in accessible, engaging formats. You can download Troon Golf & Travel to your computer, read it as an iPhone or iPad app, or find a print copy at your local Troon-managed course.
Adventure Weekends West is my travel app, available through iTunes for the iPhone and iPad. My tagline and theory: “We’re all rechargeable!” And nothing recharges the body and soul like a weekend of outdoor adventuring.
In Adventure Weekends West, I do what I’ve been doing for 30 years—I steer readers to adventures in California, Oregon, Washington, and British Columbia. Getaways range from a bald eagle–viewing river float to a climb of Mount Olympus . . . from paddling with sea otters in Morro Bay to hiking to a luxury backwoods camp in Sequoia National Monument . . . from treehouse lodges in Oregon and British Columbia to a yurt stay in Big Sur. It’s cool. Check it out.