I’m Rob Ainsley, a cycling writer based in York, England.
I contribute regularly to magazines and books, and give talks on cycling and cycle-touring. Here are a few examples of what I do.
I’ve also written, and sometimes co-written, edited or contributed to, over two dozen books. These include the Bluffer’s Guides to maths, university, Japan, the internet, computers, and cycling (Oval/Bluffers Guides/Haynes, 1988-2018); 50 Quirky Bike Rides (Eye, 2006); Great Cycle Journeys of the World (New Holland, 2010); The Sideways Guide to Composers (Future, 1993); Inside the Orchestra (Future, 1994); That British Style (Kodansha, 2000); and a few computer manuals.
I write a monthly humorous column on everyday cycling for Cycling Plus magazine, and research many of their ‘Local Knowledge’ routes. I also write for Cycling UK’s magazine and website, and occasionally for BBC Music magazine.
I give lively and humorous talks on everyday cycling and touring, illustrated with unique images from twenty years of touring the world.
I occasionally write pieces for guitar. Here are seven recent examples, inspired by bike rides. Follow the links for photos, info, PDF scores and more.
Mam Tor Etude for guitar (MP3, 3min). MTB rides on collapsed roads over the ‘shivering mountain’.
Hen Cloud Lyric piece for guitar (MP3, 4min). Slow summer evening ride in the Staffordshire Peaks.
Hornsea Mere Reflections for guitar (MP3, 6min 30sec). Yorkshire’s largest lake.
Coldstones Cut Workings for guitar (MP3, 5min). ‘Yorkshire’s Machu Picchu’.
Zebra Hill Patterns for guitar (MP3, 6min 20sec). The hill at the end of my Yorkshire A to Z.
North Cave Observations for guitar (MP3, 6min 13sec). Wetlands reserve, East Yorkshire.
Stary Gdańsk Imaginary old Polish song for guitar (MP3, 3min 20sec) from my Polish End to End, which finished near Gdańsk.
I also arrange a few pieces for the instrument. Some examples are below. Links go to YouTube videos of performances with the scores. You can also download PDFs of the scores.
Focus Sylvia (Score)
Focus Hocus Pocus (Score)
Roy Harper When an old cricketer leaves the crease (Score – Chords)
ABBA Knowing me, knowing you (Score)
Elton John Sorry seems to be the hardest word (Score)
Dukas Fanfare from ‘La Péri’ (Score)