I'm a freelance writer based in Cambridge, England, where I'm also a Fellow of Wolfson College.
At the moment I'm working on a book about the value of learning poetry. Drawing on the findings from our Poetry and Memory Project, it weaves together real-life stories of poems learned by heart, recent research in memory and neuroscience, and the history of memorisation. I'm interested in the different ways that the written and the spoken word are experienced, and in the relationships between text and voice, page and body. So poetry and poetic language make a good field of enquiry.
I had a late sortie into academia via a masters degree in Children's Literature, another one in Educational Research and then a PhD, all at the University of Cambridge. This work eventually translated into my book on poetry written for children. I have taught on both undergraduate and masters courses at the Faculty of Education in Cambridge, and also ran the aforementioned Poetry and Memory Project.
Before all of that I was a freelance editor, writer and journalist, working on non-fiction books, literacy materials, and multimedia resources … anything interesting that presented itself. And before that, I had several years as an editor in educational publishing, including two happy years as a games inventor. And somewhere back in the mists of time, I started out as a primary school teacher.
I was born on a border, between Wales and England, and have dwelt on edges and borders of all kinds ever since. I love walking, preferably in mountains and other wild places (and thus, most days, wonder what I'm doing living in Cambridge). I'm deeply interested in the natural world, the inner life and spirituality. I make poems and write plays.
Wonderfully, all these aspects of life and work are becoming increasingly integrated. There's more about that on my other website, Sauntering. (Yes, a different name, but still me!)