More About the Author
Bill Schutt was born in New York City and grew up on Long Island with his parents, Bill and Marie Schutt. After graduating from Lindenhurst High School, Bill attended Southampton College for 3 semesters before transferring to C.W. Post College (where he received a BA in Biology). Schutt then attended Geneseo State College where he studied the ectoparasites of the gray squirrel and earned a Master's Degree in Biology.
After spending several years working at the Environmental Protection Agency's Health Effects Research Laboratory (in the Research Triangle Park, N.C.), and two major drug companies (Revlon Health Care Group and Berlex Laboratories), Schutt was accepted into Cornell University's Ph.D. program in Zoology. Under the mentorship of John W. Hermanson, Bill began studying various aspects of anatomy, evolution, and behavior in bats.
Initially, Schutt investigated the passive digital lock, a ratchet-like mechanism that allows some bats to hang for extended periods of time without muscle fatigue. Gradually, Bill became more involved in the study of vampire bats - their anatomy, evolution, behavior, and especially, their ability to move efficiently on the ground. Schutt and undergrad Kim Grant maintained a colony of vampire bats at Cornell University for three years (They'd been captured in Trinidad by vampire bat expert Farouk Muradali and imported by Schutt to the U.S.). Under the supervision of biomechanics expert, John Bertram, Bill and fellow graduate students Dennis Cullinane and Young-Hui Chang built a miniature force platform. With the help of bat expert Scott Altenbach, Schutt and his coworkers used the force platform and hi-speed video to study the forces generated during flight-initiating jumps by the common vampire bat. After graduating with a Ph.D. from Cornell in 1995, Bill taught for three years at Bloomfield College in New Jersey while simultaneously working on a Post-Doctoral Research Fellowship at the American Museum of Natural History with bat expert Nancy Simmons.
In 1998, Bill Schutt accepted a faculty position at Southampton College (Long Island University). In 2005, he transferred to his undergraduate alma mater, C.W. Post College, where he is currently an Associate Professor of Biology (teaching undergraduate and graduate courses in Evolution, Mammalogy, Vertebrate Paleontology, and Vertebrate Anatomy). Additionally, Bill has maintained his strong ties to the American Museum of Natural History, where he is a Research Associate in the Department of Mammalogy.
Schutt's first book, "Dark Banquet: The Curious Lives of Blood-Feeding Creatures" was published by Harmony in 2008 (and is now available in paperback). Bill is currently working on a new book, "You Are What You Eat: A Natural History of Cannibalism" which will examine the phenomenon of cannibalism in nature and among humans.
When he isn't teaching, writing, or doing research, Bill enjoys fishing, swimming, catching his son's nasty two-seam fastball, attending concerts, sporting events, and the theater. Down time is usually spent reading (Christopher Moore and E.O. Wilson are his favorite authors) and watching old movies (especially those starring Humphrey Bogart, Steve McQueen, Marlon Brando, and Toshiro Mifune). He's also a huge music fan (e.g., Frank Sinatra, Lou Reed, Alice Cooper, The Smiths, Pink Floyd, and David Bowie). Bill Schutt lives in New York with his wife and son. Readers can learn more about Bill at his website www.darkbanquet.com and they can may contact him at firstname.lastname@example.org
Bill Schutt's literary agent is Elaine Markson, Markson-Throma Literary Agency, 44 Greenwich Ave, New York, New York, 10011. (212) 243-8480.