Preface to the Art of Chemistry – no previous experience required
A chemistry book that started life as a home winemaking book
My chemistry book started with home winemaking, a craft in which my skills were considerably less than perfect. With an answer to my failures apparently obvious, I began to research the science (otherwise known as oenology) of winemaking.
The engineer in me was convinced that if I understood more about acids and oxidation, for example, I could produce competition-grade wine. At the very least, I was confident that I could author a technical winemaking book and ultimately make the quality wine my family would choose to drink. Fast forward a few years, and I had accomplished several things, just not the ones on my list.
My writing skills took a massive leap forward. I developed the writing and illustration style that I subsequently used for this book. I came up with the concept of supportive trivia boxes. I gained a thirst and love for writing. And not least, I became enthralled and excited with the science of chemistry. However, with my chemistry familiarity inadequate at that time, I reluctantly acknowledged that my fledgeling technical winemaking book was flawed, and consequently, my resultant knowledge increase in oenology was marginal.
The home winemaking book becomes The Art of Chemistry – no previous experience required
I resolved to conduct a little detour from winemaking science by spending a bit of time studying chemistry. It transpired that my bit of time was an experience that lasted over eight years. I became captivated by the subject. Each time I scratched the surface of a topic, I uncovered more questions, and they, in turn, directed me to other themes.
It rapidly became a whole new inspiring and fascinating venture for me, which dominated my life, even my holidays. I was determined that my book would be unique in its field. And that its quality, content, and attention to detail would enable it to stand apart from others. It would not be a lightweight overview but a book that takes the beginner deep into the science. And since it was going to be written as I journeyed through my initiation into the science – I knew it would apply to readers with no prior subject familiarity.
Eight years after setting these goals, I am delighted to say that I have met or exceeded all of them. I now consider myself an engineer/scientist in the fields of electronics and chemistry.