As I wrote my dinosaur book, I grew to love and appreciate the concept of evolution. Evolution is what turned humans from being single-celled organisms to becoming the dominant species on the planet. Throughout Earth’s long history, evolution has produced countless life forms. Some life forms are insignificant, some are beautiful, and some are real monsters. The possibilities with evolution are nearly limitless and it makes you wonder what is biologically possible. For example, from the Cambrian to the Devonian Periods, arthropods and vertebrates were in an evolutionary arms race to decide which would become the dominant life forms on the planet. In the end, vertebrates won while arthropods have been reduced to being some of the smallest creatures in the world. If one takes that arms race into account, one must consider how life could have evolved if arthropods became the dominant life forms instead of vertebrates. Another scenario to consider is if the Permian mass extinction did not take place. That would mean that dinosaurs would not have had a chance to evolve and other organisms would have taken their place. If the dinosaurs did not go extinct, mammals would not have had a chance to evolve and diversify as they did. Pondering all of these various scenarios is really mentally stimulating when you consider the forms life on Earth could have taken if evolution went a different direction. This brainstorming has served me well when creating the other reverse engineered life forms that live alongside the manmade dinosaurs in my story. It has been a super-fun exercise that I will continue to ponder as I continue to write my future dinosaur books.

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