I grew up in the Moray countryside, went to school in Forres, and studied science at Aberdeen University. My career as an environmental and agricultural scientist has taken me to many parts of the world, with prolonged periods in Africa and Scandinavia.
I am the author or co-author of several text books in my professional field, including translations into German and Japanese. The guiding principle of these projects was that any subject can be interesting if the writing is good.
On retirement, I moved full time to the Isle of Lismore. Since then, I have applied my career experience to interpreting the social and environmental implications of major changes in the Scottish countryside, principally in the 19th century in the Highlands and Islands, and my books have covered emigration, migration, improvement, clearance and resettlement. I am the archivist at the Lismore Heritage Centre, and involved in the long-term study of the Celtic monastic site and the medieval cathedral.