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Bookmark and Share BBC Books' Doctor Who Series

3/24/2001 12:01:00 am - Reported by Marcus

Compiled by:
Shaun Lyon
New Subscription Service: With the March 2001 BBC Doctor Who novels, BBC Books will begin offering a new subscription service for both ranges. Eleven books (there are no books printed in December) for the price of nine, both series will be available worldwide and UK subscribers are guaranteed to receive their books by the publication date. The deadline for subscription is February 20. The cost is Ј53.91 for one of the two series (either Past or Eighth Doctor series), or Ј107.82 for both series; additional prices for postage & handling are required. The telephone # in the UK is 01795 414737; foreign orders are requested to fill out the coupon in Doctor Who Magazine, though it is not likely that most overseas buyers of DWM will have the issue before February 20 so you should still call the number to place your order.

Story Arcs Continue: BBC editor Justin Richards revealed to DWM that "a shocking new series of twists and turns" is part of the current commission series of Eighth Doctor books for the latter half of 2001, leading up to the BBC's 100th DW novel released in January 2002.

Cover Redesign?: A redesign of the BBC books' covers in the near future is now inevitable. BBC Worldwide wants to revamp the covers to bring them more in line with the DVD covers (which, by reactions elsewhere on the web, are almost universally hated). This report is confirmed in Doctor Who Magazine #299, which states that the covers will be changing beginning with the April books, though we have received word that this is not the case, and instead will be featured later in the year. "Eater of Wasps" was supposed to feature the new book design, however, the regular artwork has been seen for it. It's now likely for June or July. We can also tell you that editor Justin Richards and associate editor Jacqueline Rayner have no input on this, so emails of complaint to BBC Books apparently will do nothing, sorry! Though other pages have stated that their sources claim that this is not happening, we have been informed by BBC Books that it is. Stay tuned.

The Five Missing Books: Five Doctor Who novels from BBC Books went unreleased in 2000 due to computer glitches at the North American distributors, London Bridge: "The Ancestor Cell," "The Burning," "Heart of TARDIS," "The Banquo Legacy" and "Prime Time". After repeated delays, London Bridge assured retailers that these books would be released in 2001. The impasse seems to be subsiding as "The Banquo Legacy" is now available to retailers and is being seen in shops across the US. Further rumors of delays -- including an error on Amazon.com that suggests that "The Quantum Archangel" is not available until December 2001 in the US and Canada -- are incorrect, as all BBC books to the February installments ("Escape Velocity" and "Archangel") have been released. 

     Meanwhile, author Dave Stone has taken the ball, so to speak. "Free the Fatal Five" T-shirts and other merchandise are now available via the CafePress website, with a logo created by Stone (the author of one of the five books in question, "Heart of TARDIS").

The Monthly Telepress: Jac Rayner of BBC Books has created The Monthly Telepress, a new email newsletter designed to keep readers updated with developments in the world of Doctor Who fiction. To subscribe, send a blank email to telepress-subscribe@onelist.com.

New BBC Submissions Guidelines Online: BBC Books has shared with Outpost Gallifrey the latest version of the submission guidelines for prospective Doctor Who fiction. Check it out by clicking here. (Thanks to Jac Rayner.)

BBC Book Release Notes (Fiction) (Some information thanks to Justin Richards and Jac Rayner of BBC Books):
  • Mark Clapham (co-author of "Twilight of the Gods," the final Bernice Summerfield New Adventure from Virgin), authors his first solo BBC Doctor Who novel, Hope, an Eighth Doctor novel due out in February 2002 (his first being co-authoring "The Taking of Planet 5" two years ago)
  • The prolific Christopher Bulis, whose last BBC Doctor Who book was "Imperial Moon" last year, makes his return to the novel range in March 2002 with Palace of the Red Sun, reportedly a Fifth Doctor novel with Tegan and Turlough.(Yes yes, thank you diligent readers who pointed out the original inaccuracies in the above two comments... sorry, even I am allowed to make a few mistakes once in a while!)
  • Jonathan Morris ("Festival of Death") authors his first book in the Eighth Doctor series, Anachrophobia, set for March 2002.
  • Lance Parkin pens his second Eighth Doctor book, Trading Futures, in April 2002.
  • Paul Magrs returns for yet another BBC book with Mad Dogs and Englishmen, the January 2002 Eighth Doctor adventure. (We assume that this will be his first without his longrunning character Iris Wildthyme.) Says DWM, Magrs has made it a condition of his contract that a fluffy poodle with a pink collar should appear on the cover!
  • Two new authors have joined the BBC fold. Simon A. Forward (who wrote "One Bad Apple" in "More Short Trips") is the author of the February 2002 Past Doctor adventure, Drift, a Fourth Doctor story. And Mark Michalowski (author of "Digging Up the Past" in the short-story collection The Dead Men Diaries for Big Finish), has penned Relative Dementias, the BBC Past Doctor novel for January 2002. Michalowski told Outpost Gallifrey: "It's a 7th Doc/Ace story set in Scotland... The Doctor has to contend with mad aliens, something at the bottom of the sea, and some unpalateable truths about UNIT, whilst Ace takes things into her own hands and finds herself stalked by a shadowy figure."
  • Author Simon Bucher-Jones ("The Taking of Planet Five") returns once again with a co-author, first-time Who novelist Kelly Hale (an American), for Grimm Reality, the Eighth Doctor novel set for October 2001. The initial blurb is on our Forthcoming Releases page. The actual title of the book, which the authors hope will be on the interior front cover, is Grimm Reality, or The Marvellous Adventures Of Doctor Know-All
  • Jon de Burgh Miller, co-author of the final Virgin Benny Summerfield series novel "Twilight of the Gods," joins the BBC Books' contingent in October with his first solo sale, Dying In The Sun, a Second Doctor, Ben and Polly novel set in Hollywood in the 1940's (not 1930's as other press has stated), and featuring an "alien infiltration" plotline.
  • Steve Emmerson ("Casualties of War") has sold his second Eighth Doctor novel, Dark Progeny, set for release in August 2001.
  • Controversial author Lawrence Miles ("Interference") returns to the BBC Books fold (after a fairly publicized earlier departure) with an Eighth Doctor novel taking the November 2001 slot. The working title for this book was "The Napoleon of Beasts" but the actual title isThe Adventuress of Henrietta Street. (The official BBC site reports it as "Adventures" but BBC Books editor Justin Richards gave us the correct title.) In a statement posted on the Jade Pagoda list, Miles commented on the name: "Streets don't have adventures. That would be silly." Furthermore, Miles said jokingly that, contrary to the comment on the back cover about his story "Vrs" in the volume being the 'last ever Doctor Who fiction by Lawrence Miles,' "feel free to complain to BBC Books, who are in this case the culpable party." Meanwhile, Miles has solicited questions for another interview on his website, www.menace.ndo.co.uk.
  • April 2001 will see the release of the Past Doctor adventure The Shadow of the Glass by Justin Richards and Stephen Cole, a Sixth Doctor & Brigadier story set both in the present day and during World War II.
  • Gary Russell's Instruments of Darkness has been pushed back to November 2001 due to other commitments by the author (such as the hefty Big Finish schedule).
  • First time Who author Lloyd Rose (a female author) has penned the September 2001 Eighth Doctor novel The City of the Dead (note that the title does indeed include the first "The")
  • The Daleks will indeed return to the BBC book series, in Mike Tucker's Third Doctor, Jo & UNIT novel forthcoming in early 2002 (originally 2001, but delayed, possibly to serve as BBC Books' 100th novel)
  • Dave Stone ("Heart of TARDIS") pens his first Eighth Doctor book for July 2001, entitled The Slow Empire
  • Keith Topping ("The King of Terror") has sold Byzantium!, a First Doctor, Ian, Barbara and Vicki novel, to BBC Books. The novel takes place in the month-long gap between the TARDIS landing in "The Romans" and the remainder of the story, and is confirmed for release in July 2001
  • Peter Darvill-Evans pens his second BBC book in May 2001, entitled Asylum, a Fourth Doctor novel set in 13th Century Oxford. The book is a 'Name of the Rose' style mystery with a science fiction twist, and features the Fourth Doctor and Nyssa - albeit the post-'Terminus' Nyssa, who re-encounters the Doctor before he first meets her younger self in 'The Keeper of Traken'. It is believed to take place in the "Deadly Assassin"-"Hand of Fear" gap. "Oxford 1278, and the Doctor is keen to put a stop to the pioneering scientific experiments of Roger Bacon who has developed ideas for submarines, explosives, telescopes and aeroplanes - history will be cast into chaos if any of these ideas see the light of day."
  • Mike Tucker returns again with a Third Doctor, Jo Grant and UNIT novel originally set for release in July 2001 but now delayed into 2002
  • Author David McIntee will indeed return in August 2001 with Bullet Time, a Seventh Doctor story, "a quasi-contemporary thriller set in Hong Kong and the Far East in which the Seventh Doctor, travelling alone prior to the TV Movie, shares the limelight with investigative journalist Sarah Jane Smith." (Actually, says McIntee, the book is more a Sarah novel with the Doctor rather than the reverse).
  • Martin Day pens the February 2001 Past Doctor adventure Bunker Soldiers. It's a First Doctor, Steven & Dodo pseudo-historical adventure. Day has confirmed that the book has been moved to the February slot, replacing "Psience Fiction" which was delayed until later in the year.
  • Kate Orman returns to the Doctor Who fold with June 2001's The Year of Intelligent Tigers, an Eighth Doctor book set on an Earth colony and featuring, as the title suggests, talking alien tigers. Meanwhile, Trevor Baxendale, as previously reported, pens Eater of Wasps, an Eighth Doctor book due for release in May 2001 and set in a quiet English village with mayhem, murder and wasps. "On 49th-century Earth, mankind has developed time-travel technology, and a government security force controls illegal time jumps. But a devastating weapon is accidentally sent back through time to Wiltshire 1934, if unrecovered, the consequences are unthinkable."
  • Former BBC Books editor Stephen Cole returns in April 2001 with Vanishing Point, an Eighth Doctor book with Fitz and Anji. "Nathaniel Dark is a Destinist on the planet Khnemu where everyone carries a hereditary "Godswitch" within their genes. When increasing numbers of people start dying prematurely, Nathaniel looks for an answer - helped by a mysterious man known only as the Doctor."
  • BBC assistant editor Jacqueline Rayner recently confirmed that there would be no fourth "Short Trips" volume for 2001 from BBC Books.
  • Novelist Nick Walters will write his third Doctor Who novel for BBC Books, Superior Beings (formerly "The Gardens of Rocosia"), a Fifth Doctor & Peri novel set for release in June 2001. The book "introduces a new race of aliens, the vulpine Valethske, and is set on the "garden planet" of Verde Alturas" according to Walters, who told Outpost Gallifrey: "The novel features some human characters - the story has changed a great deal from the initial synopsis. The main stars are, however, the Valethske - a race of vulpine, bipedal aliens on a quest to track down an ancient enemy of legend."
  • Gary Russell returns in November 2001 for "Instruments of Darkness", the 'third and final' part of the loose 'trilogy' of his books from the Sixth Doctor era (including "The Scales of Injustice" and "Business Unusual"), featuring Melanie and a special guest appearance by Evelyn Smythe, the new companion character created for the Big Finish Doctor Who audio line.
Author Updates: Some of the more interesting things happening with some of your favorite Doctor Who authors nowadays (some courtesy Henry Potts and other correspondents):
  • David McIntee was recently married to Lesley McIntee in a ceremony at the Redemption 2001 convention; actor Michael Sheard (many Who roles) was the best man. McIntee's first original novel "Knight Sky" will be out around Easter 2002. McIntee is also currently penning a BBV audio and a novel trilogy using the character Guy de Carnac from his Virgin Dr. Who novel "Sanctuary".
  • Peter Anghelides has just opened up his new website at anghelides.org, which features a section for each of his published books, the illustrated story of the Frontier Worlds cover, "How I Wrote My First Novel, Kursaal" and much more.
  • David J Howe has just finished putting the finishing touches to a new horror anthology based on the acclaimed Channel 5 series Urban Gothic which is due to be published in April. The book includes original stories by Graham Masterton, Simon Clark, Christopher Fowler and others as well as an introduction by Richard O'Brien. More info at www.telos.co.uk. David is also commissioning for the second volume of the Dark Fantasy anthology F20, due for publication in September. Authors this time include Storm Constantine, Jane Welch, Freda Warrington, Juliet E McKenna and Louise Cooper.
  • Keith Topping's revised section edition of "Slayer," the unofficial (but wonderful) guide to "Buffy the Vampire Slayer" is now hitting bookstores.
  • Rebecca Levene is currently working as a freelance TV script editor on various projects
  • Mark Gatiss is performing in the stage version of "The League of Gentlemen", which is touring the UK in March.
  • Terrance Dicks' latest children's book is "The Nazi Dagger Incident", published in Jan by Piccadilly Press.
  • Lance Parkin's second "Emmerdale" book, "Emmerdale: Their Finest Hour" (Granada Media), is due 4 Jun in the UK and set in WWII.
  • A revised and updated edition of Keith Topping's unofficial "Buffy the Vampire Slayer" guitde, "Slayer" (Virgin), is due 8 Mar in the UK.
  • Jac Rayner's "Pet Rescue: Horses Like Blaze" (Ladybird Books, edited by Steve Cole), due 31 May in the UK, is a children's book for the under-nines about keeping horses, a tie-in with the Channel 4 series "Pet Rescue". Justin Richards' "Knock! Knock! Joke Book: Blue Door" (Ladybird Books, edited by Steve Cole), due 1 Mar in the UK, is a children's joke book.
  • "Something More" (Victor Gollancz) is Paul Cornell's standalone science fiction book due later this year.
  • Martin Day continues to write for the Channel 5 (UK) soap "Family Affairs". Episodes so far this year are #1002 (broadcast 30 Jan) and #1018 (21 Feb).
  • Keith DeCandido ("Decalog 3") has written the third "Farscape" novel, "Farscape 3: House of Cards" (Boxtree), due 23 Mar in the UK and in May in the US. The previous "Farscape" novel, "Farscape 2: Dark Side of the Sun" (which has yet to be released in the US) was written by Jim Mortimore (under the pseudonym Andrew Dymond).