When scientists work with creative people, cooler stories get told

Six major British science fiction authors have released an open letter calling for greater cooperation between scientists and creative people, saying that the U.K. is falling behind the U.S. in communication between the arts and sciences. The authors, including Paul McAuley, Geoff Ryman, Ken Macleod and Justina Robson, say that balancing scientific accuracy with storytelling is "hard, but worthwhile, because credibility is so important both to audiences and the scientific community."

Top image: cover detail of Paul McAuley's Cowboy Angels.

Ryman tells the Guardian:

I work with a lot of scientists and one of the frustrating things they find is that all this fascinating stuff is being done which doesn't find its way into science fiction. They say look at the science fact pages – they're so much more imaginative than science fiction. It's my experience that scientists can find it difficult to understand the needs of scriptwriters or storytellers. There is a way of working that ensures that scientific authenticity can be maintained [and] a gripping story gets told. There is a kind of process that can be followed. But both sides need to be aware of it.