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“Some of these stories are closer to my own life than others are, but not one of them is as close as people seem to think.” Alice Murno, from the intro to Moons of Jupiter

"Talent hits a target no one else can hit; genius hits a target no one else can see." Arthur Schopenhauer

“Why does everything you know, and everything you’ve learned, confirm you in what you believed before? Whereas in my case, what I grew up with, and what I thought I believed, is chipped away a little and a little, a fragment then a piece and then a piece more. With every month that passes, the corners are knocked off the certainties of this world: and the next world too. Show me where it says, in the Bible, ‘Purgatory.’ Show me where it says ‘relics, monks, nuns.’ Show me where it says ‘Pope.’” –Thomas Cromwell imagines asking Thomas More—Wolf Hall by Hilary Mantel

My favorite posts to get started: The Self-Righteousness Instinct, Sabbath Says, Encounters, Inc., and What Makes "Wolf Hall" so Great?.

He Borara: a Novel about an Anthropologist among the Yąnomamö

Napoleon Chagnon
He Borara
 is a novel in progress loosely based on the life of the famous, famously controversial, anthropologist Napoleon Chagnon and his work among the Yąnomamö of Venezuela. Because many of the key players are still living, and because I wanted the freedom to develop characters as the story requires, I've changed most of the names, including those of the Yąnomamö. Place names and dates are real, as are the names of some of the main scholars Lachlan Shackley (my very fictionalized stand-in for Napoleon Chagnon) muses on. 

The goal is a roughly ten thousand-word section published at the end of every month until the first draft is complete. You can follow my author page for updates. 

Updated contents page on

He Borara: Chapter 1: Journey up the Orinoco

He Borara: Chapter 2: Pandemonium

The Land of the Lost Ironies: He Borara: Chapter 3

The Sleep of Reason: He Borara: Chapter 3.1

Wet Socks: He Borara Chapter 3.2

Confessions of Murder: He Borara Chapter 3.3

Notes from the Periphery: He Borara Chapter 3.4

Of Nabäs and Nobodies: He Borara Chapter 4

Mending Roofs: He Borara Ch 4.1


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