"If you want to feel better about not being perfect and see the potential upside in your errors, read Being Wrong by Kathryn Schulz ... a brilliant book with a sweeping grasp of philosophy and physics and all points in between." —President Bill Clinton

The Author

Kathryn Schulz is a staff writer at The New Yorker. She won the 2015 Pulitzer Prize in Feature Writing and a National Magazine Award for her article on seismic risk in the Pacific Northwest, "The Really Big One," which was anthologized in The Best American Science and Nature Writing and The Best American Magazine Writing. Prior to joining The New Yorker, she was the book critic for New York Magazine; her writing has also appeared in The New York Times MagazineRolling StoneTIME, Foreign Policy, and the New York Times Book Review, among other publications. She is the former editor of the environmental magazine Grist, and a former reporter and editor for The Santiago Times, of Santiago, Chile. She was a 2004 recipient of the Pew Fellowship in International Journalism (now the International Reporting Project), and has reported from Central and South America, Japan, and the Middle East. A graduate of Brown University and a former Ohioan, Oregonian, and Brooklynite, she currently divides her time between the Eastern Shore of Maryland and New York's Hudson Valley.


Photo by: Dmitri Kasterine

We’ve all done it: hollered a confident “hi, Mark!” to a guy named Greg; slipped up and called our sixth grade teacher “Mom”; snuck up on our sister from behind and delivered a pinch, only to realize she was a stranger.   These kinds of gaffes are simultaneously the most mundane and most embarrassing of mistakes. More people than I can count told me stories like these, all of which ended with the speaker expressing the fervent desire to vanish. As one such person put it, “The only thing you can say in these situations is, ‘Sorry, I just had a brain biopsy.’”