Mind of Stone – Press Release

candy_jar_mos_smallCandy Jar Books is pleased to announce the final Lethbridge-Stewart novel of 2016!

Mind of Stone is by Iain McLaughlin, and sees Brigadier Lethbridge-Stewart sent to prison for destroying a rural Enlish village! It also brings back fan favourite, Captain Knight, from the 1968 Doctor Who serial The Web of Fear.

Iain McLaughlin is a scottish author well-known for his Doctor Who audios scripts and creating Erimem, the Egyptian pharoah companion for Peter Davision’s Fifth Doctor. His Doctor Who debut came in 2001 with the Big Finish audio drama, The Eye of the Scorpion, which introduced Erimem. He went on to write several audio plays and short stories for Big Finish, as well as a novel called The Coming of the Queen, the origin story of Erimem. In 2015 he launched his own Doctor Who spin-off series of fiction, based on the now amnesiac time travelling Erimem. In 2004 he also co-wrote two scripts in Big Finish’s UNIT series, both of which featured Nicholas Courtney as Brigadier Lethbridge-Stewart.

Range Editor Andy Frankham-Allen says: “This was a fun story to break. The idea of Lethbridge-Stewart serving time in prison came from Shaun; it was one of the earlier ideas we discussed. I personally wanted to bring back both Captain Knight and Colonel Pemberton, who have both been mentioned several times in the series. Indeed both have appeared in some of our short stories, so it was nice to bring them into the novels properly. I approached Iain after he was recommended by a friend, although I was aware of his work I had forgotten he’d written for the Brigadier back in 2004. Iain was up for it, and took on board the small ‘shopping list’, building a very solid story from the initial ideas.”

Iain says: “Back in 2004 I was lucky enough to write for the older Brigadier in Big Finish’s UNIT series. That was an absolute joy. It was an older, wiser but always resolute Brig. Passing years hadn’t diminished his sense of duty or his willingness to risk everything to do what needed doing and do what was right. Writing those scripts was as big a buzz for me as writing for the Doctor. Hearing Nick be complimentary about how we had handled the Brig was one of the happiest moments of my career. Writing a younger version of the Brigadier was something I had pondered, but I didn’t see how I could do it… until news of the Lethbridge-Stewart books came along. When I had the chance to pitch I jumped at it, just for the chance to spend some time with a character who feels like an old friend.

“I wanted the book to start with a bang – and so we go straight into the Brig being sent to jail. From there… well, life inside Britain’s prison system wasn’t easy. I’d read about Wormwood Scrubs having been used as a military installation during WW2 and that helped me shape the story and plan how it would unfold. Using the Scrubs made me think of TV and films from the 60s and 70s that had a real edge. McVicar, Get Carter, Target, The Long Good Friday… suddenly the Brig in jail had some edge, and it was the kind of situation we’d never seen him in before. But he’s clever and he’s resourceful… the Brigadier isn’t Colonel Blimp. He’s a damned good soldier, and he’s a dangerous man in the right situation. I hope that’s the Brig you see in this book. As an outline it went through a few revisions, as most books do. But through the writing and the rewriting, the joy at the heart of it is the Brigadier having new adventures. Taking this wonderful character, putting him in situations he needs to resolve and writing dialogue people will read in Nick’s wonderful, rich voice… that’s an honour and a pleasure. Nick and the Brigadier? Splendid fellows, both of them.”

Shaun Russell, head of publishing at Candy Jar, says: “It was I who came up with the initial idea, of putting Lethbridge-Stewart in prison, so it was a lot of fun to finally read the book (by the time I read them, at the formatting stage, these books are fully written). It was just as I hoped it would be. Iain has done a fantastic job on this book, bringing some much-needed comedy touches to the Brigadier’s time inside.”

Blurb: ‘You will be taken from this court and remanded in custody until your trial.’

Brigadier Lethbridge-Stewart has been remanded to Wormwood Scrubs Prison, and his team have no idea why. Secrecy surrounds his case, but his team barely have a chance to process anything before they are sent on a mission to Egypt.

Why does it seem like Lethbridge-Stewart is going out ofhis way to court trouble from the prison’s most notorious inmates?And what does it have to do with well-known gangster Hugh Godfrey?

In the Ptolemaic Museum of Cairo, Anne Travers and her team aretrying to uncover the mystery surrounding some very unusual stone statues.Statues that resemble those held in a secure military facility in Berkshire.

One thing connects these events; the mysterious cargo transportedby Colonel Pemberton and Captain Knight in August 1968.

The cover of Mind of Stone is by regular cover artist, Colin Howard, who recently produced the cover for the animated Doctor Who DVD, The Power of the Daleks. Colin says: “I really enjoyed bringing Captain Knight to the fore, as I particularly like the performances that actor Ralph Watson brought to bothThe Web of Fear and Horror of Fang Rock, and he deserves such a homage. Andy knows my strength, and gave me a brief that really brings out the best in me.”

Mind of Stone also features a forward by former Doctor Who script editor, and author of the classic Fury from the Deep, Victor Pemberton, close friend of Mervyn Haisman and the man after whom Colonel Pemberton was named.

The book is due to be shipped out mid-December 2016.

Mind of Stone can be pre-ordered individually, or as part of the Series 3 Bundle (both UK and overseas), which includes the previous novels, Times Squared by Rick Cross, andBlood of Atlantis by Simon A Forward, or the subscription deal for those wishing to get six books for the price of five.

Read the prologue HERE for free!

Candy Jar is pleased to announce that the subscription offer is now being extended to international customers. Please see http://www.candy-jar.co.uk/books/subscriptions.html for more details.

Advertisements

SADIE MILLER LAUNCHES LETHBRIDGE-STEWART 2016 RANGE

IMG_1776Candy Jar Books has just released the fourth book in the Lethbridge-Stewart series: Mutually Assured Domination by Nick Walters. Fans who have already received the final instalment may have noticed the very exciting revelation at the end of Walters’ book: Lethbridge-Stewart will return in 2016. And, not only will the publisher be releasing another series of novels, it has been announced that the next book will be written by none other than Sadie Miller!

Candy Jar Books launched the fully licensed Lethbridge-Stewart series in February 2015, with Andy Frankham-Allen’s The Forgotten Son kicking off the venture in style. Three more titles were subsequently released; each met with high praise from fans and the press.

Sadie Miller is set to return to the worlds of Doctor Who with her debut novel, Moon Blink – an exclusive preview of which is printed at the end of Mutually Assured Domination.

Sadie’s book headlines the 2016 series of Lethbridge-Stewart novels, and is published in the spring, followed by The Showstoppers by Jonathan Cooper and The Grandfather Infestation by John Peel. A further three novels will be released in the autumn.

About the books:

Moon Blink by Sadie Miller

A new drug is on the streets, and it appears to have come from the moon. Only, Apollo 11 has only just landed on the moon! Lethbridge-Stewart and Anne Travers are all set to investigate, when Anne receives a very unexpected visitor.

The Showstoppers by Jonathan Cooper

A new TV show is about to hit the airwaves, one connected to a notorious Nazi war criminal. Lethbridge-Stewart and Anne Travers investigate. (Jonathan Cooper is the author of two novels in the Space: 1889 steampunk series, and Doctor Who correspondent for The Independent.)

The Grandfather Infestation by John Peel

Something strange is happening in the North Sea, bringing Pirate Radio to its knees. The Fifth Operational Corps is called in to investigate. (John Peel is the author of countless novels, including several for Star Trek and Doctor Who. But he’s not a DJ.)

Sadie Miller Returns

Gary Russell, former script editor of The Sarah Jane Adventures and long-time family friend of the Millers, said: “When I first heard that Sadie was writing a novel, my initial reaction was ‘ahh, a chip off the old block’– her delightful mum was one of the most creative, sharp and incisive individuals I ever knew. But then I realised I was doing Sadie a disservice, because from the first day I met her, Sadie Miller has always been her own person, utterly talented and rapaciously gifted which, other than encouragement and support, owes nothing to either of her parents and everything to Sadie’s own determination to be brilliant. And with this novel, she’s proven that she is.”

Sadie enjoyed a career as a child actress through many voice-over parts, making her screen debut when she was eight, playing Penny in the BBC film, Royal Celebration. She is best-known to Doctor Who fans for her role in both series of Sarah Jane Smith audio dramas produced by Big Finish in 2002 and 2006. She won much critical acclaim for the role of the wheelchair-bound Planet 3 researcher, Natalie Redfern, particularly in the story Test of Nerve.

She completed courses with the National Youth Theatre, the Royal Court Theatre’s Young Writer’s Programme, and RADA’s Shakespeare Course. She earned a BA in English and Related Literature, and graduated with honours.

Sadie turned from acting in 2011. “After University, I went to drama school and was actually in my final term when mum died. This obviously impacted how I looked at my future and I decided to switch to writing instead so that I could have a little more control and flexibility to be around for my dad.” She is currently working on an original Young Adult novel, having already contributed to anthologies. In 2014 she was a finalist for the Glass Woman prize with Mirandolina.

Sadie is no stranger to Doctor Who, of course. Her father is actor Brian Miller, who has appeared in both Doctor Who and The Sarah Jane Adventures, and her mother is Doctor Who legend Elisabeth Sladen, the actress who won the hearts of millions of Doctor Who fans in the 1970s as Sarah Jane Smith, and once again in 2005 when she brought Sarah back to the modern era of Doctor Who. Elisabeth Sladen sadly passed away in 2011, which led to Sadie distancing herself for some time from Doctor Who fandom.

“I needed time to mourn, to be there for my dad. The constant reminders of my mum, obviously very hard to avoid, were just too painful. But now I feel that the time is right to reconnect with Doctor Who, and the fans,” said Sadie. “My dad did so last year with an appearance in Peter Capaldi’s first episode, and so now it’s my turn. It’s exciting to be writing my first novel, and that it features the Brig adds another layer of importance. He, in the form of Nicholas Courtney, was there when mum debuted as Sarah in 1973, and she was there for his very last on screen appearance as the character in 2008. So in many ways this is important.”

“I almost worked with Sadie a good ten years ago on the second series of Sarah Jane Smith,” said series editor Andy Frankham-Allen, “but alas that did not come to be. We’ve kept in touch since, and as soon as I learned she was switching careers I immediately asked if she wanted to write for the Lethbridge-Stewart range, feeling it may be the right time for her to reconnect with Doctor Who fandom. And bless her, she agreed without a second thought!”

Candy Jar’s Publishing Co-ordinator Hayley Cox said: “It’s a great honour to be here at the start of Sadie’s writing career, working with her on her debut novel. She came to us with an amazing idea and it was a case of how could we not do it.”

The usual discounted pre-order bundles will be on offer from Candy Jar, with a new subscription deal* for those wishing to get six books for the price of five!

*A minimum twelve-month subscription is required, and will be paid in two instalments: First instalment (£22.50) will be taken upon placement of the order, and the second instalment (£22.50) will be taken six months later. If you wish to cancel your subscription, you must do so one month before renewal. After which, the next instalment will be taken for the 2017 series of books. As an added bonus, those who subscribe will receive a free novella.

The Lethbridge-Stewart series of books can now be pre-ordered from Candy Jar Books: www.candyjarbooks.co.uk

David A McIntee Interview

TSE_Cover_SmallWith only eleven days until the release of the much-anticipated The Schizoid Earth, Candy Jar Books have released a brand new interview with author David A McIntee.

How did you come to be involved in Lethbridge-Stewart?

‘I was asked by Andy Frankham-Allen at Candy Jar, because he liked what I’d done with some of the Doctor Who books – in particular Face Of The Enemy, which was very UNIT-heavy, with the Brig as a lead. Well, given how much I love the character, and could see lots of cool ideas to do with a pre-UNIT Lethbridge-Stewart, I wasn’t going to turn that down. There’s just so much opportunity with the character at that stage of his life.’

In what ways did writing for this spin-off series differ from writing for the parent series?

‘Obviously one had to be a bit more careful about continuity and copyright, as there’s a more limited set of rights to play with, and I think it means one can’t have the thick Brig (or others) that sometimes appeared (the one who thinks an alien planet is Cromer, for example), because you don’t have this alien bloke to look smart by comparison. And, IMO that’s a good thing, because you want everybody to be portrayed at their best – these are supposed to be the elite, after all.’

Did you come across any unanticipated difficulties in writing for the modern Doctor Who market, which is more directed at the ‘general’ fan, and less at the ‘core’ fandom that kept the property alive during the ‘90s and early ‘00s?

‘I’m not sure I’ve actually written for this modern general market, TBH – my last Doctor Who book was in 2004, before the series returned, and I reckon that Lethbridge-Stewart will appeal to the core adult fans seeking nostalgia. So… I don’t know yet, because I don’t believe I’ve had the experience.’

The_Face_of_the_EnemyThe cover suggests a link to Inferno. In 1998 you wrote The Face of the Enemy, which was a sequel to Inferno. Can we expect some connection between that novel and The Schizoid Earth?

‘Yes, in some ways, but not necessarily in the way you’d think. For example, what you see on the cover isn’t what you think you see on the cover. And there is at least one linking character.’

What can readers expect from The Schizoid Earth?

‘‘60s style Spy-Fi, action, thrills, explosions, sudden mad reversals and unexpected cliffhangers…’

What do you feel contributes to the enduring popularity of Alistair Lethbridge-Stewart?

‘Honestly, Nick Courtney. The character’s strengths, when written properly, are his intelligence and loyalty and honour, which I think are also timeless qualities we look for in our fictional heroes – especially military type ones. But Nick was, is, and always will be at the heart of it.’

What was your first Doctor Who novel, and how did that come about?

‘White Darkness – I’d fancied trying a novelisation even before the original novel line got started (and I’ve still never done a novelisation of anything, but would love to, just for the experience). In fact I did some sample text for an expanded novelisation of Mission to the Unknown, because I thought nobody else would be daft enough to try to turn it into a book, and didn’t anticipate them just doing it as a chapter in The Daleks’ Masterplan.

‘Target had been taken over by Virgin, and when they wanted to do original Doctor Who novels, I pitched one called Moebius Trip, which I’ll mention again later, but was asked to try again, and I think White Darkness was the second or third pitch, because I wanted to do something with a period setting (I love that side of the series, what with the time machine and all), and one that wasn’t set in the Home Counties. Peter Darvill-Evans liked it and off we went.’

White Darkness CoverYou’ve been writing Doctor Who novels since 1993, and have written at least one for all the ‘classic’ Doctors. What kind of challenges did each Doctor present you?

‘I like to have a tie-in character’s voice in my head, from the actor who played the role, so that made Eight a bit problematic, as, at the time, Paul McGann had had about forty minutes of screen time. (I’d love to have another go now that we’ve had the audios.) On the other hand, I never liked Sylvester McCoy’s performance as Seven, so I always found myself sort of writing against him, which is weird.

‘Patrick Troughton’s another one where lack of surviving episodes meant there was less to go on, but at least there were always audios of the missing episodes.

‘The ones that most surprised me, actually, were the Third Doctor – who actually has a lot less depth to explore and play around with than the others – and the First, who turned out to be a lot more layered and interesting, and so kind of brought himself out quite naturally but unexpectedly.

‘Six I was more inspired by the Doctor Who Magazine comics, and Four and Five were the ones I really grew up with, so they were by far the easiest, living in my head anyway.’

You’ve been involved in Doctor Who publishing for a long time, and have worked with most Doctor Who publishers, including BBC Books, in which way would you say Doctor Who publishing has much changed over the last twenty years?

‘In practical terms, of course, it’s gone from being an open training ground for new writers to invitation-only for a rep company with occasional guest stars, which is a shame. The bigger difference, though, is in how the desired target audience has been redefined. It’s turned from children to SF-reading adults twenty-three years ago, with The New Adventures, then became aimed more at adult fans with The Missing Adventures and Past Doctors Adventures, and then back to a younger readership with the New Series books, although even then we’ve now got the guest star author ones – the Alastair Reynolds and Stephen Baxter ones, and the Gareth Roberts novelisations, for example – being aimed at the adult nostalgia market again. So I suspect really Doctor Who publishing tends to run in cycles. The Wheel Turns, as Mary Morris says in Kinda.’

You’ve written for a lot of Doctor Who big villains over the years, including the Sontarans and the Master. Which was your favourite, and why?

‘To write for? The Master, of course. Equal but opposite, the anti-Doctor… Because with a villain you can do anything. Have him do good things, even, without ruining the character the way you would if you have the hero be too bad. As a more general favourite Doctor Who villain, but not one I wrote for, I love Tlotoxl in The Aztecs, though he’s not actually a villain, rather an antagonist to our heroes. Which is exactly why he’s so great. I basically much prefer when you can have a three dimensional antagonist rather than outright cartoon evil baddie. That said, I still want to write for the Daleks someday.’

You’re no stranger to writing books without the Doctor, does your approach with those differ to novels where the Doctor is the lead?

‘Not really, no – my approach is based on the type or tone of story, rather than which character is the lead. So it varies even when the Doctor is the lead.’

eletigWho is your favourite Doctor to write for?

‘Yes. Oh, well, if we’re going to be more specific… I really never expected to say this, cos I’d have expected to say the Fourth, but actually – and as implied by the answer to an earlier question – the First. Which really surprised me.’

Which of the modern Doctors would you most like to write for?

‘I dunno, it’d be cool to complete the set. Ten would be good if it could undo Donna’s mind-wipe. Eleven is so much fun, and Twelve I’d love to just do as Malcolm Tucker, but… I’m gonna say Nine in the end, because I really really wish we’d had more Eccleston, and would love to sort of make that happen.’

Who’s your favourite companion to write for?

‘I think the Ian and Barbara double-act. They’re both modern enough to relate to and distant in time enough to allow for having stuff explained. And they’re just such a well balanced OTP. They’re a joy to write, and that’s largely down to the performances all those years ago.’

You’ve written novels for Star Trek, too, one of a handful of authors write for both Star Trek and Doctor Who; what would say the differences in approach are, both from the point of view of a writer, and the expectations of the publisher?

star-trek-the-next-generation-indistinguishable-9781501130182_hr‘The expectations of the publisher aren’t that different, I don’t think – tie-in publishers pretty much have the same aim for their novels, to support the franchise. Obviously there’s more of a team thing with the Trek stories, as opposed to the Doctor’s individualism and iconoclasm, so you’re more likely to be writing in favour of an ideal than against a state you disagree with. Overall, though, the bigger differences are that there are more hoops to jump through with Trek – synopsis, breakdown, and finished text all have to be approved by different people at different stages (and, TBH I don’t mind this, as I prefer working that way), which wasn’t the case with the Doctor Who books when I was doing them, where it was just the editor’s nod.

‘Oh, and Trek paid more than Doctor Who did.’

Editor Andy Frankham-Allen was also asked what we can expect from The Schizoid Earth;

‘The rug to be pulled from under you. The cover, I feel, produces certain expectations from long-term fans, and if there’s one thing we like to do, is play on expectations and then do something completely unexpected, which will become clearer as the series progresses. And David has done that brilliantly. It’s something of a dark reflection of The Forgotten Son, and, to utilise a well-worn cliché, Lethbridge-Stewart’s life will never be the same again.’

The Schizoid Earth can be ordered here. Any pre-orders between now and September 25th will receive the free short story Legacies.

Briefing from the Brig

web-of-fear-brigNicholas Courtney, the man who brought Lethbridge-Stewart to life, has been interviewed many times over the years, and we’re proud to share with you a rare interview with him from 1996. In it he talks about fandom and his thoughts on the Paul McGann TV Movie, transmitted shortly before the interview was conducted. Recorded by Candy Jar Books at Longleat, the interview was conducted by Shaun Russell, editor-in-chief of Lethbridge-Stewart.

Watch it HERE!