Kathy Sawyer covered space science and technology for The Washington Post for seventeen years, beginning with the 1986 Challenger accident and including the 2003 loss of the space shuttle Columbia. Her work has also been published in magazines such as National Geographic and Astronomy.

“When we talk about the marriage of science and journalism, our dilemma is clear. Science is slow, patient, precise, careful, conservative and complicated. Journalism is hungry for headlines and drama, fast, short, very imprecise at times.”
----Sawyer, quoted in Worlds Apart: How the Distance Between Science and Journalism Threatens America’s Future, by Hartz and Chappell (First Amendment Center).

Kathy, in her first book, The Rock From Mars: A Detective Story on Two Planets (Random House) “realizes the full potential of a great science story in all its multidimensional complexity and richness…” –The American Scientist

Purchase The Rock From Mars at




Los Angeles Times
"Thanks to Kathy Sawyer's vibrant writing, "The Rock From Mars" unfolds like a Hollywood cliffhanger...” MORE »

The New York Times
"...Ms. Sawyer has a knack for translating complex procedures and ideas into accessible language and vivid images. She also has a gift for political comedy..." MORE »

News & Updates

See Dan Zak’s January 28, 2016, Interview of Sawyer in The Washington Post on the Anniversary of the Challenger Accident:

‘We’ve lost ’em, God bless ’em': What it was like to witness the Challenger disaster MORE »

The Rock From Mars is Honored by the National Academies

The nation’s premier scientific advisory body selected Sawyer’s The Rock From Mars: A Detective Story on Two Planets as one of the three best books of the year. It was selected from among more than 250 nominations for the 2007 Communication Award in the book category. MORE »

See the National Academies press release to learn more about the awards.