Edmund has been teetotal for over 21 years after drinking heavily during his years at university and subsequently finding it difficult to drink in moderation in his 20s. He tried various methods of cutting down and introduced rules to reduce his alcohol intake, including only drinking at weekends or when on holiday. Neither of these approaches worked as he always ended up drinking to excess. His decision to quit was determined by the intervention of a friend – when he was 28 years old – who told him he would end up sad and alone and, most probably, soon dead if he did not quit the booze, which he then did almost immediately. Since then his life changed beyond recognition. He fulfilled his ambition to become a journalist on the national papers and during the final seven years of his journalistic career won a remarkable 18 awards for excellence.