Born in Virginia in 1971, but currently living in London, Ness holds dual American/British citizenship. He has written nine books in total, six of which have been for young adults, including the dystopian trilogy Chaos Walking set in a world of rampant telepathy.
Among his many awards are two Carnegie Medals and the Costa Children’s Book Award. He has adapted his own novel A Monster Calls for a film starring Liam Neeson, Felicity Jones and Sigourney Weaver, slated for release October 2016, but Class will be his first television drama.
This will not be Ness’s first work in the Doctor Who universe, though. He previously wrote the ebook short story Tip of the Tongue, starring the fifth Doctor Peter Davison, to tie in with the show’s 50th anniversary in 2013.
His latest novel The Rest of Us Just Live Here follows ordinary teenagers at the periphery of paranormal adventures at their school, a premise that sounds similar to the new show. The Guardian described the book as “by turns hilarious and poignant… a novel that requires you to suspend your disbelief and enjoy the ride.”