Natural Habitat: Cassandra Willyard

In our Natural Habitat series, we invite science writers to share their working spaces—offices, spare bedrooms, coffee shops, hammocks—and the accoutrements that help them do their best work. (If you’d like to nominate your office to be featured at Natural Habitat, let us know.)

In this first episode of Natural Habitat, we visit the office of Brooklyn-based freelancer Cassandra Willyard, who writes for many excellent publications and blogs at the always-riveting The Last Word on Nothing. Cassie tells us that she went a little bonkers and took more than 100 photos of her office; she whittled it down to a smaller number for us, but you can find more photos and details about her office here.


  1. Anastasia Pappa says:

    Natural habitat is a wonderful addition! Thank you

  2. Pingback: To Quote or Not to Quote | Helen Fields

  3. i love the room she has, it can make all her creativity come

  4. I love the program that cuts off distractions and tells you to get back to work! Where would one get something like that? I’m glad to hear other people have that problem too.

    • Hi Aileen,
      I think the program that Cassandra uses is called — note that there is no “e” in “focused.” Another one that is very popular (and which I use religiously) is I’ve also heard people say good things about “antisocial.” I’m sure there are many others… maybe others can chime in on their favorite distraction-killers.


      • I use StayFocusd now with Chrome, and I used to use Leechblock with Firefox. And I also have Freedom, which blocks you from the internet entirely. There are indeed MANY apps and ad-ons to help us focus. Wish I didn’t need them!

  5. Super idea Jeanne and Siri, and yay Cassandra for being the guinea pig. I too have a co-worker, who spends most of her time behind my iMac. I am inspired by your standing desk; I have been using my laptop for mine, but it’s a great idea to add a big monitor as well. (Scurries off to look for cables…)

  6. Thanks for the nice comments! I can’t wait to see everyone else’s offices.

  7. Lisa Grossman says:

    I love the idea of tagging your reporter’s notebooks! Brilliant! I’m going to try that immediately.

  8. Nancy Shute says:

    Color me inspired! I particularly love the standing desk workaround. Much prettier (and cheaper) than the dedicated standing desks on the market.

    • Have you given any kind of consideration at all with translating your website in to German? I know a couple of of translaters right here that would certainly help you do it for no cost if you wanna contact me.

  9. Love it! Great new feature. Cathy