The question “Where do you come from?” tends to elicit an itinerary: I was raised in Edinburgh, Scotland and Victoria B.C: since then I’ve lived in five cities in Canada, one in the US, and one in the UK. I have more university degrees than I can readily explain – except (to paraphrase Garfield the cat) I never met a science I didn’t like – and work in Health Technology Assessment.

My first published novel, Legacies, came out in February 1995 from Millennium, the science fiction imprint of Orion, London — which cuts a fairly long story short, since it was five years plus in the writing and another two in the revising. It garnered good reviews and a spot on Locus’ Best of Year List for first novels. Blueheart was completed during my first year of medical school, and published in November 1996. Cavalcade was published in November 1998 and shortlisted for the Arthur C. Clarke Award for that year. Throne Price, written in collaboration with Lynda Williams, was published by Edge Science Fiction and Fantasy Publishing, in 2003. My fantasy trilogy, Darkborn, Lightborn and Shadowborn came out in May 2009, June 2010, and June 2011. Science fiction novels Breakpoint: Nereis and Contagion: Eyre are scheduled for April 2014 and April 2015, respectively.

As to why I write SF&F:   To indulge a passion for knowledge of all kinds and science and medicine in particular.   I have an excuse to read about everything from oceanography to nanotechnology, from colour theory to echolocation.   I enjoy world-building — the devastated ecology of Burdania, the jungle of Taridwyn (both in Legacies), the ocean world of Blueheart, the alien spacecraft of Cavalcade, the sightless world of the Darkborn, and the worlds of Breakpoint: Nereis, Contagion: Eyre and its sequels.    And I like to be able to ditch all assumptions and conventional wisdom and start entirely from scratch, running my fictional “thought experiments” (Ursula Le Guin’s words) according to any parameters I please.   Science fiction gives my imagination elbow room.

Elsewhere on the web

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Flickr [alixsin] (… from which you might conclude I spend most of my time in a kayak …)

Delicious [alixsin] (a smallish but eclectic collection)