I am a
passionate linguist, and most of my life has been spent in writing,
reading, proofreading, editing and translating languages materials
and resources in English, French, Italian, Latin, German and Spanish.
The part of my life which has not been spent working with languages
has been spent working with classic cars and parts, and those remain
Latin and German at university, because I am interested in grammar,
comparative linguistics and language structure, and those two
languages are the best 'way into' that subject. I am passionately
interested in the interrelationship of languages and language
families, and so I chose to broaden the range of languages which I
spoke as soon as I had the opportunity to do so.
left university I spent two years at the headquarters of the Royal
Mail in London, and I was in charge of the European air and surface
mail services. However, although I did some language work there (one
of my responsibilities was to translate incoming documents into
English), I wanted to work more directly with languages, and so I
left this post and trained as a teacher of modern languages (French
German, French and a little Italian for 5 years, and then I worked
for 2 more years as an Advisory Teacher (teacher trainer) for
Derbyshire County Council, concentrating on teaching modern languages
to mixed ability classes.
on from the advisory teacher position I took up a post as course
co-ordinator and lead author on the first ever German course aimed
directly at mixed ability groups, at York University under the aegis
of HarperCollins publishers. My duties included planning and
sequencing all the course materials, managing a team of eight writers
who were producing materials for the course, editing and
proof-reading all their materials, and writing, editing and
proof-reading the teachers' notes and supplementary materials for the
course, all of which were in English.
In late 1991 I was 'head-hunted' by the publishers of the then (and now)
best-ever-selling French course for British secondary schools, Encore
Tricolore. My responsibilities included training and instructing the
original author team in how to interpret and comply with the then-new
National Curriculum, and proof-reading, editing, correcting and
commenting on their work. I also wrote the teachers' notes and
supplementary materials for the course, which comprised five volumes.
It proved to be so successful and durable that it is still a very
high-volume seller, even though work first started on the project in
Encore Tricolore was finished, and concurrently with the last two
volumes, I was asked to write a companion German course to accompany
it. This was published as Lernpunkt Deutsch, and (like Encore
Tricolore) sold very well, especially in independent schools.
After Lernpunkt Deutsch I published several other multi-volume French and
German courses for various publishers, until, in 2004, I decided to
try my hand at making a living at my hobby, which is restoring
classic Italian cars, although I continued to do a little authoring
and translation work. In all have written or co-authored around 150
foreign language books, including all the separate component parts of
each language course that I have worked on.
wife took early retirement in 2014 I have divided my time between publishing, translating and
proof-reading work, and continuing to source car parts for Italian and American classic cars..