So we're into the second week of January and I'm slowly re-finding my rhythm of the every-day. I'm feeling excited about my book coming out and also about the other writing I hope to do.

I found this quote in the Writer's Almanac today: "Human nature seems to me like the Alps. The depths are profound, black as night, and terrifying, but the heights are equally real, uplifted in the sunshine." It came from Emily Greene Balch. Not a woman I had ever heard of, but someone I feel I ought to have known about. Working in the late 19th century and into the 20th, she wrote a number of books which helped bring about social reform. She co-founded the Women's International League of Peace and Freedom and in 1946 was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize.

I was struck by her quote, firstly because I think it true and secondly because I will be headed to the Alps later this year for a holiday. Switzerland being my birth place, rightly or wrongly, I do feel an affinity for them. I am very interested in the depths of human nature, but would equally like my head in the sunshine at times this year.