John Lucarotti was born in England and spent nine years in the Royal Navy during and after the Second World War. He then went to North America to work for Imperial Oil. It was here that he began writing. Later, he scripted an eighteen-part radio series about the life of Marco Polo for the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation, but at one point found himself earning more money as an encyclopedia salesman than as a writer. Consequently he decided to focus on the US market. By the late Fifties he had taken Canadian citizenship, and then returned to England, where he became involved in TV work. He had recently moved to Majorca when, at Syndey Newman's suggestion, David Whitaker approached him to write for Doctor Who. Remembering his CBC series, he chose Marco Polo as his subject. Throughout the Sixties and Seventies, Lucarotti continued a successful TV career, creating the shows Operation Patch and The Ravelled Thread, among others, and contributing scripts to The Avengers, Doctor Who, Ghost Squad, Joe 90, The Man in Room 17, Murder Bag, New Scotland Yard, The Protectors, Moonbase 3, The Onedin Line, Star Maidens and Into the Labyrinth, his last credited screen work in 1981. He novelised his 1976 serial Operation Patch (Target, 1976) and the 1979/1980 series The Ravelled Thread (Puffin Books, 1979). He contributed the first Brief Encounter short story for Doctor Who Magazine in 1990, in which the author met the First Doctor in a French bar. The story was reprinted in the 1992 Doctor Who Yearbook (Marvel, 1991). John Lucarotti died in Paris, France, on 20 November 1994 aged 68.