I was born on 8 April 1958, in a small German town on the Dutch border between Mönchengladbach and Aachen. When I look back, my life to this day has been like the Beatles’ song “The Long and Winding Road”. And this road led uphill and downhill, had peaks that I climbed, and valleys I walked through.
On paper, it all looks completely unspectacular: school and teacher training in Aachen (German and Catholic Theology) – and then, instead of a traineeship, voluntary work at the Rheinische Post. And that’s when I knew! writing, and especially journalism, was just the right thing for me.
First writing for the local press for years and then ending up with an editing job at head office? That was nothing for me! I’ve always found the drudgery of routines extremely boring. So I shifted to the other side of the desk – to join the communications department of a German global corporation. I saw a lot of things happen over the 20 years I worked there: the restructing work in Saxony-Anhalt after the fall of the German Wall. Then developing worldwide PR projects, the inside illumination of handbags, and regularly flying Swiss concept cars around the globe. And I always came to the same realisation. It’s the extraordinary story you’re telling that counts So that’s what I did for another ten years as a freelance journalist and communications consultant.
I have two grown-up daughters who have long since flown the coup. I live with the best wife in the world in a cosy terraced house in a small village between Düsseldorf and Cologne. (The benefit of this: we serve the local beer from both regions …)