My journey from science to science fiction . . . and back

With my science background (I’m a biologist specialised in ecology), one would think that a career at university would be a likely choice for me. Instead, I’ve become a writer.

Actually I worked at university for six years after my graduation. I was the assistant of a professor and the head of a research team. We used to make researches in the field of estuarine and marine ecology.
Unfortunately, various circumstances forced me to let it go. My professor retired and our laboratory was dismissed. I could have kept on pursuing that career, of course, but I had lost the momentum. I didn’t like so much the academic world, at least not the one where I should have tried to continue my career.

So I decided to change. I had already started my business as web designer when I was still working at university, so when I left it, I just continued and I added scientific translations and some music management.

But writing was something different. I discovered my love for writing when I was a teenager. I was never particularly encouraged as a writer at school. I must say I didn’t like Italian literature. It was mostly due to the way it was taught to me, I guess. In fact, I did like English literature instead. Anyway I liked writing, I liked the way I wrote. My professors didn’t particularly like my style, so I wasn’t encouraged by them. What I liked most were the weird ideas I had about stories. I loved to invent stories. I do love it.
Inventing stories, and then writing them, is a way to live your life in a different way. To experience different kinds of lives.

As I was a cinema addict, I started writing screenplays. I wanted to be a screenwriter, but it’s quite complicated to become a screenwriter, I mean, to have your script transformed into a movie. Then I changed to fiction. Initially it was fan fiction. I am a huge Star Wars fan, so my first fan faction was in the Star Wars expanded universe. Then in 1999 I fell in love with a silly movie called “The Mummy” and in 2000 I started writing a book inspired by it.
Then I just stopped with fiction for a while, well, years. I’ve tried poetry and song lyrics.

In 2006 I had a dream; a lot of what I write comes from dreams. It was about a story set in the future, where people lived in an isolated island. From that dream came the first idea for a novel, titled in Italian “L’isola di Gaia”, which means “The Isle of Gaia”. I actually wrote it between 2009 and 2011, before “Red Desert”. I had completed the first draft on the 30th of December 2011 and five days later I started writing “Red Desert - Point of No Return”.
In 2013 I made a first revision of “The Isle of Gaia” and in 2014 I re-wrote it completely and edited it, then I published it in November, of course in Italian.

 “The Isle of Gaia” is set in the same universe of “Red Desert, but 35 years after the end of my Mars series, and this quite long novel together with “Red Desert” and three more novels, I will be writing in the next few years, are part of a bigger saga, whose name is Aurora.
So I’m still going to write science fiction for a while.

But I don’t forget my love for science and especially biology. Inspired by Anna Persson, the main character of “Red Desert, who is an exobiologist, I started widening my knowledge on astrobiology. There’s a lot of affinity between it and ecology, and I have always been interested in space science, so I think I will continue on this path.

And this scientific background is one of the reasons I decided to write hard science fiction, but I’m now exploring more subgenres. “The Isle of Gaia” is a cyberpunk technothriller and the next science fiction novel I’m going to start writing in April (not connected to the Aurora saga) is a space opera.

Anyway I’m pretty sure that my scientific mind will somehow guide me in this new writing adventure, as much as it does even when I write thrillers or I do everything else in my life.