Born in 1965. I have degrees in theoretical physics and programming. I have lived in Sweden, England, Ireland, and the Netherlands, I have worked as a teacher, as a translator at Microsoft and as a programmer at the European Space Agency, I have started and sold a translation agency. I have a job picking at words, when I'm not trying to convince freelance translators that they operate in a market economy, or telling clients that services do cost money and take a positive, non-zero amount of time to perform. I have a house, a wife, and two kids.

What I don't have is publishing credits, unless you count two papers on low-temperature thermoluminescence, where I am credited as main author. In true academic spirit, I did not type one word. (I did design, build and test the equipment, though.)

About the writing:

I wrote my first novel at 11. It was so bad it's not even funny. Still, take a moment to consider: how many people have the persistence, at that age, to sit down and punch at a keyboard until the story is actually finished, some 150 pages later? I'm still finding uses for that persistence.

My parents bought me an electric typewriter somewhere halfway through that first novel. It was much easier.

I continued to write short stories - mostly SF - all through primary and secondary school. Some of them could maybe be re-worked into something publishable, and I'm actually submitting a much re-worked version of one of them to magazines at the moment.

My military service was spent in a communications central, where there was not much going on after 1700 hours, but there still had to be someone on duty 24/7/365 in case an unspecified enemy - in instruction movies they were portrayed as adorned with great moustaches and speaking a non-specific but extremely Slavic language - should attack. There was a typewriter. This resulted in a second novel, which was a lot better in many ways. But I had been experimenting with every variable I could think of, and while there are paragraphs and even whole pages that I'm not ashamed of, it was mainly done for the learning experience.

University intervened and I wrote nothing for nearly three years. My last term was spent as an exchange student at the University of Sussex, and we had no TV. This resulted in a novel where only a few chapters in the middle are unaccountably missing - well, OK, I was writing it all by hand and maybe I got a bit too impatient to develop the characters properly - and maybe I'll write them one day, and see if anyone will publish it.

Then, real life intervened... I worked at Microsoft in Dublin, then at the European Space Agency in Noordwijk outside Leiden, and then in Stockholm. No writing was undertaken, unless you count something which might count as a novel and probably does have a salvageable idea. I started a translation agency, had children, and forgot all about the writing. Then one webcomic I was following announced that they had had a brilliant idea and were looking for short stories on the theme. This was the Machine of Death. That project might or might not come to fruition one day, but to me, the important thing was the fact that they selected my story as one of the 33 that would make up the anthology, out of nearly 700 submitted. And to top it off, it was the first fiction I had ever written in English. (Of course, being good at English was - and still is - my daytime job, but writing fiction is a long step away from what I do for a living.) This fired up synapses which had gone rusty many years ago, I took a course in creative writing, and here I am four years later, happily scribbling away. Today, I have more well-developed ideas than I can finish in the meagre 24 hours allotted to each day.

I also found the good people at the writer's community Litopia, hosted by the inestimable Peter Cox of Redhammer, and in the 18 months I have spent there, I have learned as much as I did in the 18 previous years.

Nothing published yet. No matter. I can't stop. Fail again. Fail better.

Fail harder.