Welcome to my new blog. I am just starting a Master of Research degree at University College London studying taxonomies. I am now getting pretty good at explaining what they are but I’m not going to do that here. Suffice it to say that if you think I am going to write about stuffed animals or the Inland Revenue, you’re in the wrong place!

My first real encounter with taxonomical systems was during the 1990s when I worked as an editor of reference books, working on such titles as the Collins English Dictionary, the Macmillan Encyclopedia, and the Hutchinson Encyclopedia and Almanac. In between learning when to use “which” and “that” and spot a typo at 40 paces, I was assigned to the thesaurus team. Eventually, I was given the wonderful task of devising the structure for a new edition of the UK’s first fully electronically compiled general language thesaurus, for Bloomsbury. Creating a hierarchy of everything was an incredible project and left me fascinated by the grey areas and the concepts that ooze like slime moulds from one category to another.