SciCommer Interview: Abdullah Iqbal

By Fancy Comma, LLC Team

Fancy Comma had the opportunity to interview with UK-based SciCommer Abdullah Iqbal to discuss his work as a SciCommer and his vision for SciComm in his community and beyond. Abdullah is an aspiring neuroscientist whose research focuses on the disease mechanisms involved in Alzheimer’s. As a SciCommer, he is a writer and host of the podcast Brain Explained. His writing work has been published in Scientific American and Massive Science. Keep reading for our interview with Abdullah!

.@AbIqbal_1’s advice for aspiring science freelancers: learn as much as you can and practice your skills.

photo of abdullah iqbal
Abdullah’s Twitter photo – follow him on Twitter at Abiqbal_1.

Fancy Comma: Where are you based? What do you do as a #SciComm-er, and what is the scope of SciComm where you live?

Abdullah Iqbal: I’m based in Nelson, UK, and I do freelance science writing. 

My SciComm endeavors involve writing news articles and features for magazines such as Scientific American. I also host a podcast called Brain Explained, all about brain science.

FC: How did you get into SciComm?

Abdullah: I used The Open Notebook to find out about science writing and how to get article pitches accepted. Then, I just sent emails to as many places as possible. 

For podcasting, I contacted the host of the Brain Science podcast and learned the basics through them.

FC: What are your tips for those interested in doing freelance SciComm?

Abdullah: There are a few things I did. Here’s a short list.

  • Use The Open Notebook to improve your writing. 
  • Continue pitching even if you get rejected. 
  • Practice, practice, and practice.
  • Make sure to read articles in the field of your interest. It will help you learn how to write amazingly.
  • Do not hesitate to contact experts in your field.

Thanks, Abdullah! If you’re interested in listening to Brain Explained, check it out on Spotify or Apple podcasts.

Find the Brain Explained podcast on Spotify.

About Abdullah Iqbal

Abdullah Iqbal is pursuing his Master of Research (MRes) in Neuroscience at the University of Leeds. His research focuses on the disease mechanisms of Alzheimer’s disease. Abdullah has interned with the Sheffield Institute for Translational Neuroscience. Abdullah hosts the podcast Brain Explained, where he discusses various topics in neuroscience. He is also an accomplished science writer who has written articles for Scientific American, Massive Science, North Wing Magazine, and the British Science Association. He has also worked with TEDxManchester and TEDxLancasterU as a volunteer and organizing team member.

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