Enjoyment of reading has always been there. Enjoyment of writing similarly I think, but largely in latent form, with no real outlet. Writing course material for The Open University first brought to my attention how good it can feel to shape words.

Working in an engineering environment, as I was then, this first writing was largely technical, but even in this context it was possible to touch on more general themes. I remember enjoying writing about the formation of uranium in exploding stars, even though this was not perhaps strictly necessary in a course on the basics of nuclear power!

With hindsight this enjoyment could be viewed as the first hint of a pendulum beginning to swing. Something inside was insisting that the years spent in the objectivity, anonymity and logic of science were drawn to a close in order to make way for something more personal. It is probably not desirable to swing like this, a more balanced middle ground would be sensible no doubt, but oscillation is a natural motion of many dynamic systems and anyway the changes of perspective are the stuff of life.