I write in a variety of long and short forms; the short stories in my recent collection The Need for Better Regulation of Outer Space are all inspired by real, imaginary, and bizarre aspects of science. My novel The Falling Sky is about an astronomer who discovers the Universe and loses her mind.
I have a PhD in astronomy and worked as an astronomer for several years at Imperial College. I also have an MLitt in creative writing from University of Glasgow and I was a winner of a Scottish Book Trust/Creative Scotland New Writers Award for 2012. I’m a 2016 winner of a Suffrage Science award – set up to honour women in science. One of my poems was included in the Scottish Poetry Library’s ‘Best Scottish Poems’ of 2016 and my essay on European astronomers in Chile was included in ‘The Best American Science and Nature Writing 2014‘.
I really enjoy being a writer-in-residence, my first residency was at the ESRC Genomics Policy and Research Forum (based at the University of Edinburgh) where I learnt a little bit about genetics and wrote about it. More recently during 2015 I was a writer-in-residence on the fiction meets science programme at the Hanse-Wissenschaftskolleg in Germany, and I’m currently a visiting fellow at STIS (Science, Technology and Innovation Studies unit at the University of Edinburgh).
I also write non-fiction: newspaper articles, book reviews and the occasional academic paper. I occasionally write poems too.
I like talking about the links between science and literature on the radio and at live events; I’ve been on Radio 4 and appeared at many festivals including Wigtown Book Festival, Edinburgh International Book Festival, Aye Write!, Orkney International Science Festival and Edinburgh International Science Festival. I’ve run workshops at some of these events encouraging other writers to be inspired by science and the hidden lives of scientists. I’m on the Scottish Book Trust’s Live Literature Database.
I’m represented by Isobel Dixon at Blake Friedmann.