I have been captivated by space since I was four years old, and my enthusiasm has grown stronger and stronger ever since. With a lifelong passion for the exploration and utilization of space, covering the science, the engineering and the pure thrill of a cosmic adventure, working on a mission to explore some of the last uncharted worlds in the inner solar system has been a dream come true for me. My work is indescribably exciting.
And although it literally is indescribable, I can’t help but try! As one facet of that effort, I started writing the Dawn Journal eight years ago. Now that I have written 100, I was invited to write a short blog to celebrate. (In other words, I’ve been asked to blog about blogging.)
My goal has been to provide an inside view of the mission, starting when our faithful spacecraft was being built and readied for launch and continuing throughout its remarkable interplanetary journey. I have tried to provide some insight into how such a complex undertaking is accomplished as well as share some of the exhilaration, the wonder, the drama, the rewards, and the inspiration. I know I am extremely fortunate to participate in this project, and I want to help involve everyone else who longs to understand the cosmos or who wants to fuel their inner fires that burn for a noble adventure. Moreover, as one of the stewards of precious taxpayer dollars, I feel it is very important to inform people of what a fabulous return they are getting for their small investment in NASA.
To that end, I have written more than 171 thousand words in Dawn Journals covering all aspects of the mission. (In the interest of full disclosure, I acknowledge that I have reused some words, including, for example, “Dawn” more than 2,000 times and “the” more than 13,800 times.) I usually end up writing them in what would otherwise be my spare time and in a great rush, but I like to think it is worthwhile, as collectively they offer a good description of one of humankind’s grand endeavors, from the trivial and mundane to the fascinating and profound.
I plan to continue the Dawn Journals as long as Dawn continues its extraordinary extraterrestrial expedition. I hope you will join Dawnophiles throughout the universe who find them a helpful and engaging way to ride along on this ambitious mission of discovery as creatures on Earth, curious and creative, humble yet bold, reach far, far from home.
Enjoy a tour of Marc’s home “in space.”
You can read Marc’s Deep Space 1 “mission logs,” which evolved to the same style as his Dawn Journals, here.