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The Birth of a Book


When I first began writing There Are Other Rivers (my book about walking across southern India), it was going to be a straightforward narrative. This is what I had done with my books about cycling round the world.

There was just one problem this time.

It was rubbish.

So I quit.

It was definitely the right decision. (Incidentally, for a great little book about knowing when to quit and when to stick, read The Dip by Seth Godin).

After a long fallow period, I began again. (Incidentally, for a great little post about fallow periods, read David Hieatt).

This time I set out to do something very different.

I decided to write a book about WHY we feel compelled to travel. I wanted to tease out some of the meanings of the words fernweh and wanderlust.

After months and months of thought (on top of the years of chewing this over whilst I am actually out on journeys), I came up with the picture at the top of this post. It’s a 1-page summary of Why I Travel and it became the framework of my book. (You can click on the image to view it in more detail).

There Are Other Rivers is the book I am most proud of writing.

Looking back at it now, I love this picture. It feels like my entire life, distilled down to a spider diagram.

What would your spider diagram look like, I wonder?


Namdroling Monastery






Morning papers




Early morning at a temple

The end of the walk

There Are Other Rivers

There Are Other Rivers is the book I am most proud of writing.

It’s not a long book, but it’s not an expensive book either.

You can buy it on my website (as a book or as a mappazine) for a fiver, on Amazon for £2.80, on your Kindle for £2.01, or you can get it free for your Kindle here in exchange for a little online plug. There is also a photo book version for iPad and iPhone.

Thank you!

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  1. Of all your books, I liked ‘There are other rivers’ the most. I liked the anecdotal style and wished that book never came to an end. Unfortunately, it was too thin.

    I will be looking forward to many more books from you.



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