Inspirational experiences. Real life insights. The truly exceptional stories that spark a new way of thinking

An illustration of a deer on a canvas by Angela Harding

“Birds are a constant source of nature” – how the natural world inspires printmaker Angela Harding

Printmaker Angela Harding on finding success as a printmaker in her sixties

Averil Mansfield

Averil Mansfield: Britain’s trailblazing female surgeon

Meet Britain's first female professor of surgery

Jenni Murray in blue dress

Jenni Murray: Artificial intelligence? No thanks, I’ll stick with actual intelligence

Our columnist reflects on the limitations of AI

Susie Dent

Susie Dent: How the power of mothers runs through our language

Wise words about the power of mothers

Jeremy Paxman

Jeremy Paxman on… attending A&E three times in 24 hours

Our columnist takes three consecutive visits to A&E

Jonathan Agnew

The world according to… Jonathan Agnew

The Test Match Special presenter on life, cake and minding his language.

Sanjeev Bhaskar

Sanjeev Bhaskar on stereotypes, insomnia and the weirdness of beards

A national treasure talks stereotypes, insomnia and mixed feelings about Goodness Gracious Me on TikTok

An airplane flying above the clouds, towards a setting sun.


We’ve all had holidays go wrong – but none so much, and with such alarming regularity, as Alison. Her nightmare trip to the United States has just ended, but its memory lives long in her milk-less kitchen. If only she could have made the correct flight back...

A dusty old grand piano on the stage

Song in the Key of Skye

George owns a music shop, but these days it’s illegal to sell musical instruments so he can’t make a living. Then one day Callum turns up at his door, looking for a piano.

Wooden stairs leading to a dark basement.

Satis House

Saga Exceptional short story competition: Alan Roberts takes you on a journey via a dark and mysterious basement.

Meat cleaver cutting through steak on a black surface.

One Man’s Meat

The tale of a corrupt butcher, manipulating and bribing his way through village life, and the long, arduous encounter of a certain rodent – will their paths cross and what kind of destruction could one wreak upon another?