This week we meet another relatively new member of Chudleigh Writers’ Circle. Steve Male is certainly the most far-flung of our members, travelling half way across the county each month to attend meetings. He first made contact with the group via mutual connections at Swanwick Writers Summer School.
What Do I Write?
I am very interested in how the mind functions. As an engineer I have always been keen to understand how things work so I researched the subject. What I found was a mish-mash of theories and ideas which didn’t seem to relate in any coherent way and all seemed, to a greater or lesser extent, at odds with what we experience and feel about ourselves. Philosophy and religion were incoherent. The neurosciences at least seemed to rest on some experimental base but were inconclusive to say the least. So I thought at length about the problem and I’m writing a functional account of how the mind works, in the way an engineer would analyse a system and write its functional specification.
Where Do I Write?
I am very lucky to have a room at home dedicated to my study and have done in the last three houses. So, I have a proper office desk and a desktop PC, attached storage, printers etc., with which to focus my efforts. I know I’m very lucky in this respect as I can shut the door and concentrate on my work.
Best Writerly Moment?
Was the realisation that I could do this. Ever since being a teenager I’ve fancied writing in an unfocused, rather idealised, way. Then a career and life got in the way. I wrote many undergraduate and graduate papers along with a thesis or two then uncounted business documents and plans. When I finally got down to writing my book I was delighted to find I could do it. Going to Swanwick and finding CWC were great moments as I found there were plenty of other authors with their own projects who for the most part are a really friendly and supportive crowd.
Not a lot of people know…
No one knows how the brain works to give us the sensations we experience. For example we know a lot about how the eyes work and even, to a limited extent, how the brain processes the information from the eyes. But, there is no convincing explanation of how we sense a full image of the world around us, one we all experience. It’s known as the “binding problem”. Look it up on Wikipedia. Now I find that extraordinary, and not a lot of people know…