This is supposed to be a self-introduction of Ronald Klueh, the writer, so here goes:

I was born and raised in the small town of Ferdinand in Southern Indiana.  Since I was the oldest of six children, there was no money for college, so I spent two years in the army after high school to figure out what I wanted to do. What I eventually did was get the GI Bill, and I was accepted by the Purdue University Engineering School and the Indiana University Journalism School. I wanted to write, but I chose Purdue—more money and jobs in engineering. Besides, I figured if I flunked out I could always go to journalism.

After receiving a Metallurgical Engineering Degree from Purdue, I earned a PhD in Metallurgy and Material Science from Carnegie Mellon University. From there I became a research scientist at Oak Ridge National Laboratory in Oak Ridge, Tennessee. That position provided ample opportunity to write—over two-hundred-fifty papers published in the scientific and technical literature. But I still wanted to write for a general audience, so I did some free-lance science writing for magazines for the layman interested in science—New Science Magazine, Popular Science, and others. I also had an op-ed piece in the Washington Post that was then picked up by newspapers around the country—The Houston Chronicle, Hartford Times Press, and others.

Fiction, however, was what I really wanted to write, so I penned some short stories and had two accepted, one of which was published, while the other languished in the magazine’s files until the magazine went out of business. Given the limited number of outlets for short stories, I turned to writing novels and “finished” three, including PERILOUS PANACEA. I was able to acquire an agent to represent all of them, but the needed connections didn't happen. About five years ago, I essentially quit writing, although I did not quit thinking about writing.

Two years ago, I exchanged my research career for two new careers: self-employed metallurgical consultant and, yes, writer. For my first writing task, I returned to PERILOUS PANACEA. The manuscript originated before the ubiquity of cell phones, text messaging, and high-speed internet, and the terms cyber-terrorism and cyber-attack did not exist.  Back then, words like trap door, Trojan horse, and virus were not part of computer jargon.  When I returned to the novel, I believe—I hope—I knew more about crafting a story, and I sought to further develop and sharpen the characters and bring them into a narrative reshaped for the twenty-first century.

Perilous Panacea refers to the dichotomy of nuclear science: The panacea of nuclear science for humanity is nuclear energy. When I was writing about science for the layman, several of my articles were on the benefits of nuclear energy. Although alternate energy sources—solar and wind—have their place, they cannot meet the future demand for energy that will allow people in underdeveloped countries to achieve a higher standard of living. Nuclear energy can do this without spewing nitrogen oxides, sulfur dioxides, and the greenhouse gas carbon dioxide. It is estimated that 1,600 million tons of carbon dioxide would be emitted annually if 16 percent of the world's electricity now generated by nuclear power were to have been generated using coal.

The other side of the panacea, the perilous side, is all about the dangers of nuclear science, and you can read more about it on the Savant Book Blog where I talk a bit about the book itself.

RONALD KLUEH, Author of Soon-to-be-Released PERILOUS PANACEA