I think I set myself on a course to become a scientist around about the time that Carl Sagan's 'Cosmos' series was on television, and there really was no going back for me at that point, and then I went on to study space science and then get my Ph.D., then go aboard and work in the European Space Agency.
I'm always a little bit cautious around invented terminology because so much science fiction is off-putting to the uninitiated. You open up the first page, and it's full of all these made-up words.
I am playing in a playground that's already been played in. I am always aware that a lot of the furniture in science fiction is second hand.
I couldn't ever write a straight crime novel: there'd be an intrusion of weirdness at some point.
I prioritise story over science, but not at the expense of being really stupid about it.
I've never had much interest in spinoffery - the idea of writing in someone else's universe generally leaves me cold - but 'Doctor Who' is different. I've grown up with it. It's been part of my life since I was tiny, watching Jon Pertwee on a grainy black and white television in Cornwall and being terrified out of my mind.