Has it been a worthwhile life..?

How do you know if you have lived a ‘worthwhile’ life? When you look back on how you have spent the time gifted you, how do you judge if it has been time ‘well-spent’, ‘worthy’, ‘good’, virtuous’, ‘positive’…? You pick the adjective because the supply is almost endless!

Which ones you choose will depend on what’s important to you, of course.

I suppose many people will measure the value of their existence emotionally, by how they ‘feel’. They will look at relationships, partners, children, and take the measure of themselves from those sounding boards. And why would you not? If you have honest, generous, caring children with whom you share a great relationship, then doesn’t that say something about you too, your ‘merit’ as a parent?

In addition to such relationships – which, I confess, in my case vary considerably in their ‘success’! – one way or another, much of my own life has been absorbed by the concrete, the measurable. I’m sure that’s true for many of us if you consider things like exams; whether you believe in them or not, such things are interpreted as absolute measures. And perhaps something similar is true in our working lives too. In my case, hitting budgets and delivering projects were all things that had an absolute measure. You either did or didn’t…

But does all that matter?

Not really. Yet for me – and probably because of that professional upbringing – evidence is important. Evidence is incontrovertible. You cannot argue against it. And if I do seek proof then I do so in the full and certain knowledge that I do it not for others, but for myself.

I have two lists, two sets of data, that are important measures of what I have done – and in having that proof, I feel as if I go some way to measuring the value of my life.

The first – and by far the most important – is the list of all the things I have written. This is ‘me on a page’; these are the the things which are not only ‘real’ but that only I could have produced. They are, if you like, my mark on the world.

The second is – somewhat bizarrely – a list of all the places I have visited. Travel has always felt like something of an achievement to me, proof that a boy from a very humble background was able to find a way to go and explore. You might also see this list as the inverse of the former i.e. it is the mark of the world on me.

I share both these lists with you now for no real reason other than I can – and maybe because right now I feel in the need for a little self-warmth…


Novels and Novellas

On Parliament Hill – Coverstory books 2021

A Pattern of Sorts – Coverstory books 2020

The Opposite of Remembering – Coverstory books 2020

At Maunston Quay – Coverstory books 2019

An Infinity of Mirrors – Coverstory books 2018 (2nd ed.)

The Big Frog Theory – Coverstory books 2018 (2nd ed.)

Losing Moby Dick and Other Stories – Coverstory books 2017

Short Stories

Degrees of Separation – Coverstory books 2018

Secrets & Wisdom – Paperback 2017


The Homelessness of a Child – Coverstory books 2021

The Myths of Native Trees – Coverstory books 2020

First-time Visions of Earth from Space – Coverstory books 2019

After the Rehearsals – Coverstory books 2018

Punctuations from History – Coverstory books 2018

Human Archaeology – Paperback 2017

Collected Poems (1979-2016) – KDP 2017


New Contexts: 1 – Coverstory books 2021

Triple Measures – Ian Gouge, K.M.Miller, Tom Furniss, Coverstory books 2020

Oak Tree Alchemy – Coverstory books 2019

Play for Three Hands – Tom Furniss, Ian Gouge, K.M.Miller, pamphlet 1981


Shaping the IT Organization – Springer-Verlag 2003

e-Management – Springer-Verlag 2003

On the 7th Day – Management Books 2000 2001


ChinaGrenadaN IrelandUSA – California
DenmarkGuernseyNetherlandsUSA – New Jersey
EireHong KongScotlandUSA – South Carolina
EnglandIndiaSierra LeoneUSA – Texas
FinlandIndonesiaSingaporeUSA – Virginia

2 thoughts on “Has it been a worthwhile life..?

  1. That’s something you’ve got me thinking about. Although we’ve been pushed towards achieving success we’re told it’s your relationships that matter. But to have a fulllfiling life, you also need to feel accomplished!

    Liked by 1 person

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