This used to be a third-person malarkey, but that’s a bit pretentious, isn’t it?
I was born in Fife, Scotland and am now living — after an extended period in various parts of England, followed by several years in Edinburgh — in Aberdeen, Scotland. (I can no longer see my house from here.) My academic and professional background is in environmental science: I have a BSc (Hons) in Marine Science from Southampton University and a Masters degree in Environmental Diagnostics from Cranfield University. Currently I work in environmental protection for the public sector, specialising in water regulation, which means I’m getting paid to save the world; although I have been such diverse things as archaeologist, warden for a prehistoric stone circle in Oxfordshire, editorial assistant for a publishing company, patent abstractor and administrator for the Territorial Army.
I have a weird form of synaesthesia that, amongst other things, gives everything shape, flavour and texture. This makes me a fussy eater, although not a picky one, and choosy about words. The synaesthetic architecture of grammar, if you can forgive me the concept, is beautiful.
Outside the day job I am a compulsive writer, living, as I do, with a bad case of hypergraphia. I have contributed to White Dragon Magazine, Bike Reader, The Right Times and 3rd Stone, amongst others. I am a regular contributor to CityCycling.
In 2010 my flash piece Big Brother, Little Sister made the final twenty in the Campaign For Real Fear and made me think about my writing as something other than a consuming hobby. In 2011 I sold my story What the Water Gave Her to Dagan Books, which made me think about it some more. So I gave myself permission to take it seriously and bought myself a laptop so that I can write even when Frood is using the desktop for his art. I swear it wasn’t merely an excuse to buy a shiny new toy. I do use it for writing, not just searching YouTube for non-Newtonian fluids or finding out what Maru has been up to lately.
I have a serious writer’s blog (no, really) over at ravenbait.com, which is kept up to date with news of publications, readings, and thoughts on writing and the writing process, at least as I’ve found it applies to me.
As a keen cyclist, I drive my long-suffering husband (Frood again) to despair with my continued contemplation of the magical n+1. I apparently buck the popular trend by detesting cycle paths and disagreeing that women cyclists are somehow more affected by society’s current obsession with the car than their male counterparts. I’ve been told that expecting sexual equality, in the sense of taking any individual on his or her own qualities rather than making assumptions based on the contents of her or his underpants, makes me a feminist. But then I’ve also been told that knowing how to build my own wheels makes me a geek.
Yes, I build my own wheels. I also have a terrible comics habit. I suppose that makes me a geek feminist, if you’re the sort of person who likes assigning labels to innocent bystanders.
In 2007 I got started on triathlon, a sport that really should come with a health warning. So a geek feminist triathlete, for the sake of completion.
When not working, training, writing, reading, eating or sleeping I like to play games. I favour third-person shooters and brawlers, although I have an ongoing obsession with Katamari and Little Big Planet. Someone up there listened to me and released a version of Rez for the PS3. It’s called Child of Eden, and it’s so good I may have to suck it up and buy a Move. (I have not forgiven Sony for abandoning the EyeToy. Antigrav was one of the best games ever.)
About the blog
This is where I witter about triathlon, bikes, cycling, food, music, movies, television, photography, inexplicably incomprehensible advertising, the weird and wonderful world of stuff Frood says, the trials and tribulations of being a sad Marvel fangirl and other random nonsense. Here you will find race reports and reviews of books, films, television, gear — even the occasional recipe.
I can be reached via email at sam [at] ravenfamily [dot] org. Otherwise I can be found in the usual social places. Please feel free to get in touch.