I grew up in a family of Russian scientists listening to bedtime stories about black holes, volcanoes and intrepid explorers. Since then, I have survived Siberian winter, Jordanian summer and Columbia J-School. I edited features at the Nautilus magazine, won three awards for stories about poo, and have written for Newsweek, The Atlantic, The Boston Globe, Smithsonian, Sierra Club,The Oprah Magazine, Alaska Airlines, Hemispheres, Audubon, Popular Mechanics, Mosaic Science, Hakai, Nature, and Scientific American. Along the way, I’ve munched on Mexican crickets, cooked a zebu stew in Madagascar, sipped a drink made from a venomous snake in Peru—and I always lived to write the story. I specialize in narrative and longform writing, I am a culture shock junkie, and I camp out in New York so I can fly nonstop to almost anywhere.