I recognised the wonderful sensation the skydivers were describing. When the writing is going well, my sense of self melts away; all those everyday concerns, that internal tiresome dialogue, abates. I lose the sense of time passing.
The best advice a writer can receive comes from reading. Ever since, at the age of five, I embarked on my career as a compulsive reader, I have been learning what well-crafted writing looks like.
I can't move on to the body of the text until I've written a satisfactory beginning, and to get this right I have to have at least a notion of where I want to end.
A concession to the Indian climate is the solar topi he is holding on his lap. Although the topi had become a symbol of British power, because it was worn to protect the delicate white man from the blazing sun it also signalled the white man's vulnerability.
At home I felt trapped, powerless to change the dreadful circumstances, and unable to leave. My trips to York provided me with a refuge but they also showed me that there was a way out. All I needed was three decent A Levels.
Mary has her own way of writing, using a mixture of letters and pictures. I had only just learned to read, and deciphering Mary's idiosyncratic script was one of the pleasures of reading the books.
I like to sit and read at one of the narrow tables next to the floor-to-ceiling windows on North Front 4, occasionally looking out across college gardens to the spires of central Cambridge.