Reading to Write: How Much for a Book?

The connection between landscape and character is never far away…

A few readers have asked me how much research goes into the writing of a book.

How much do you have to read in order to write?

Amoral Familism and the Med

The island of Malta — my home for 6 years

If you want to understand Malta — and the southern Mediterranean in general — then you’ll want to come to grips with the theory of Amoral Familism.

A New Life in a New Town

A new life in a new town…

I learned and experienced many things during my years in Malta, and I wrote around 30 articles about it — most of them were positive, about the places we discovered, from small village streets to the windswept heights of Ras ir-Raheb and the coast of Blata tal-Melh.

My Island Years Are at an End

Thus ends my island years…

I moved to the Mediterranean because I wanted to write an island book inspired by Lawrence Durrell. But it had to be a place no one else had written about — at least, not in that way.

An Island Christmas with Traces of Rome

Looking for the ruins of a Roman villa…

The highlight of my Christmas Eve was a last minute drive over to Valletta to see the new Star Wars film. Valletta was in full xmas-mode and it seemed like half the island was out for a stroll. Only 15 people in the entire cinema made it feel like a private screening, and Rogue One did not disappoint.

Is This The World’s Stupidest Hobby?

Petards — possibly the world's most annoying "hobby"...

Petards — possibly the world’s most annoying “hobby”

Have you ever dreamed of living in the middle of an artillery firing range? Then Malta in summer is for you.

Is There One “Perfect Place” For Everyone?

Searching for my personal landscape...

Searching for my personal landscape…

I’ve dedicated the past decade and a half of my life to traveling the world’s marginal places.

I started off exploring forgotten regions, like Central America’s Mosquito Coast or the Mongolian Gobi. But I’ve also conducted a very long inquiry into expat life.

Apartment Hunting in Malta — A Cautionary Tale

It’s incredible how disruptive the apartment hunting process is here in Malta.

The entire game is dominated by agents, who earn a commission equal to one month’s rent each time they successfully match owner with tenant.

Exploring Malta’s Victoria Lines

The Victoria Lines is a 12km long series of fortifications that cuts across the island of Malta from coast to coast, along a steep escarpment called The Great Fault.

[…the Great Fault was actually no one’s fault… just geology…]

Searching for the Past — How I Spent Christmas

Christmas is just another day for me.

I’m not religious, and if forced to choose I would pick the old Greek and Roman pagan gods over any current creed or belief system.