My Writing

My love of writing is second only to my love of books. I’ve always had great fun making up stories, and when I was in high school, I even wanted to become a journalist. Life took another turn, but after moving to Japan, I went back to writing. First here on this blog and then for work, in particular for What’s up in Kyoto.

I also started writing for my own pleasure, from jotting down short random thoughts in private journals to longer essays. Some of my writing that doesn’t really fit on this blog can be found on my Medium page.

Recently, some of my pieces were traditionally published, both on- and offline. Here are some of my articles that have been presented to a wider audience.

Magazine Articles

online Editions

20 Years of BATI-HOLIC
This article originated in a deep dive for my WUIK newsletter; it made it to the Australian “Heavy” Magazine. It’s quite heavy – on the fangirling, I’m afraid. [JULY 2024]

Print editions

The Death of the Tea Master
In the 16th century, Sen-no-Rikyu single-handedly created Japanese tea ceremony as it is performed today, inventing wabi-sabi along the way. Subsequently, he served two rulers of Japan until he was sentenced to death by Toyotomi Hideyoshi. This is his story, intertwined with the story of tea in Japan and fantastic images. [JUNE 2024]

Chapters in Books/Anthologies

Traditionally Published

Austria’s Most Wanted: 27 Years and Counting

In 1987, Tibor Foco was convicted of the murder of Elfriede Hochgatter one year prior. Eight years later, in 1995, while on the way to a university lecture, Tibor managed to escape his police escort and has been missing since. His spectacular escape and the many legitimate questions as to his guilt have been captivating peoples’ imaginations to this day. This is the story of Austria’s longest missing fugitive.

published in: The Best New True Crime Stories: Unsolved Crimes & Mysteries, Mango, September 2022
longer summary is here

“Because I Loved Him”

Sada Abe was trying to escape a life as a prostitute when she met Kichizo Ishida. Their steamy affair ended when she murdered him in his sleep and cut off his penis as a keepsake. She spent six years in prison and upon release found herself a celebrity in 20th century Japan. This is her story.

published in: The Best New True Crime Stories: Crimes of Passion, Obsession & Revenge, Mango, August 2021
longer summary is here

Writers in Kyoto Anthologies

The Revived Waterway

One of my favourite places in Kyoto is Keage Incline, the Kyoto end of Lake Biwa Canal beginning in Otsu. This short piece explores the canal’s history from its building in the early Meiji era to its decline after WWII and its revival a few years ago.

published in The Nature of Kyoto, Writers in Kyoto Anthology #5, May 2023

The Forbidden Garden

While taking a stroll around Kyoto, I came across a large stone wall surrounding a private garden. A gardener let me in, and we explored the garden together…

published in Encounters With Kyoto, Writers in Kyoto Anthology #3, June 2019