Something about my background and ideas
How I growed up to become a non-fiction writer? When I started writing a presentation of the Finnish language in English around the year 1999, I met several young foreign students whose interest in the Finnish language fortified my belief that some kind of a narrative and conversational overview on the Finnish grammar system would be needed in English.
I was worried about the trainees and exchange students who come to Finland for a short time, and return to their home countries disappointed since they did not learn Finnish at all or learned a lot of words and sayings only. Therefore I pretended to write a long letter to a foreign friend. In fact, however, I wrote more to my own amusement, and in the hope that I possibly could contribute to the ways in which we Finns teach Finnish to foreigners, and to Finnish schoolchildren as well.
Also I had mind those "well" and "high" educated immigrants who have a job in Finland and do it well without speaking Finnish at all. And so do also many immigrant housewifes. Many of them would like to learn Finnish because their children are learning, but they themselves cannot find time (nor money, perhaps) for attending Finnish language courses regularly. They certainly would feel their living here more comfortable if they could at least understand the language they hear and see around.
I remember with gratitude a couple of Finnish societies, Suomen 4H-liito ry and Suomi-Seura ry, who promised early in advance to start buying my book because of its idea. In October 2001, The Finnish Association of Non-fiction Writers accepted my application for membership on grounds of the Private Lessons in Finnish Grammar, that I had issued in July 2001.
My early work was in that connection, really then already, called a Finnish grammar, "jokseenkin täydellinen esitys suomen kielen rakenteesta" (quite a complete survey of the Finnish structure). My way of presenting and explaining the Finnish grammar may differ from the traditional way of teaching Finnish in textbooks, but the basic facts are presented as in traditional Finnish grammar books and textbooks also to native Finns themselves.