What legacy will neo-liberal greed and climate change leave for our kids?

I was deeply impressed by last week’s climate change rally – I was in central Wellington, New Zealand, when the local march came past. It was not just for kids; people of all ages were there. And it pointed up the fact that what’s happening today will impact the next generation. And the one after … More What legacy will neo-liberal greed and climate change leave for our kids?

It’s annoying when people comment without reading the substance

These days, it seems, some people only read headlines before reacting. I suppose it always happened, but social media means the response is right there for everybody to see. Sometimes they get entirely the wrong end of the stick. A while back I published a piece on the early 1950s sex scandal at the Elbe … More It’s annoying when people comment without reading the substance

Book of the week: ‘Pacific War’ – sneaking an oxymoron into the title

Back in 2001 my publishers of the day, Reed New Zealand, offered me an unheard-of deal: a multi-book contract. This was an absolute rarity in New Zealand, and I jumped at the chance. It involved writing three military histories in a series. I’ve covered the first two in earlier posts. The third was on New … More Book of the week: ‘Pacific War’ – sneaking an oxymoron into the title

Why do people fight each other over nothing?

A few weeks ago there was a rather nasty and violent incident in Queenstown, one of New Zealand’s main tourist traps, involving two groups of passers-by on the street. Something happened, a brawl broke out, and at least two people were stabbed. Apparently it came out of absolutely nowhere. And this sort of thing seems … More Why do people fight each other over nothing?

Book of the week: ‘Italian Odyssey’ – a drama in three acts

I often envisage the difference between non-fiction and fiction writing as similar to the distinction between a photographer and a representational artist. Both have to produce something well-structured and appealing. The difference is that the photographer has to work with what is there, whereas the artist can, if needed, use license to achieve the same … More Book of the week: ‘Italian Odyssey’ – a drama in three acts