The Schizoid Earth
Candy Jar Books is pleased to announce the second free Lethbridge-Stewart short story of 2017.
Nick Walters is no stranger to the worlds of Doctor Who, having written for BBC Books in the 1990s, and penning two spin-off novels, one for the Bernice Summerfield series, and one for Lethbridge-Stewart back in 2015.
It was a hanging thread from Nick’s Lethbridge-Stewart novel that inspired The Runaway Bomb, as Range Editor Andy Frankham-Allen explains: “At the end of Mutually Assured Domination, Lethbridge-Stewart considered two soldiers for the Fifth – both helped him fight the Dominators in that book – but we’ve not heard from them since. So, this short story shows us a little of how Lethbridge-Stewart recruits new troops for the Corps. Only one of the two will make the grade, and the winner has a guest spot in Night of the Intelligence, the novel for which this short story is the companion.”
Nick says: “Sergeant Bell and (especially) Corporal Stevens originally had bigger roles in Mutually Assured Domination, so I leapt at the chance of fleshing out the characters a bit more. Stevens is a bit of a loose cannon and quite an intimidating character, whilst Bell is quieter and more reserved, so the two make a good pairing. I wanted to put them in a combat situation to see what happens. Bell, especially, went through the wringer in Mutually Assured Domination, so this story, if you like, is his ‘reward’ for all that he suffered – being tied to that chair for hours on end couldn’t have been nice! As for the titular Bomb of the story, it is based on a fondly-remembered episode of The Six Million Dollar Man entitled Death Probe, which really captured my six-year-old imagination. Older readers (?) may remember this!”
The Runaway Bomb will be sent out free to everybody who purchases (includes any bundles or subscription featuring…) this month’s release, Night of the Intelligence by Andy Frankham-Allen.
Night of the Intelligence not only opens seires four of the range, but also begins the year-long celebration of the Great Intelligence and Professor Travers, characters who first appeared in Doctor Who on September 30 1967 in The Abominable Snowmen by Mervyn Haisman & Henry Lincoln. The celebration continues with a special anniverary bundle – all of which act as prequels to Night of the Intelligence. Buy Candy Jar’s three Great Intelligence novels (The Forgotten Son by Andy Frankham-Allen, Times Squared by Rick Cross, and Night of the Intelligence) and get The Schizoid Earth by David A McIntee for free. So that’s four books for the price of three!
Hannah Haisman, Executor of the Haisman Estate, says: “It’s been wonderful seeing the resurgence of respect for my grandfather’s creations in the last few years, and celebrating two of his greatest characters is a moment of pride for me. Grandad would adore what’s happening now, and especially the way Andy (Frankham-Allen) has tied his characters’ histories together. It’s a wonderful time to be a fan of the Great Intelligence and Professor Travers!”
Throughout 2017 a further three non-Lethbridge-Stewart titles featuring the Great Intelligence will be released. Shaun Russell, head of publishing, says: “We’re very proud to work alongside some great people during the celebration year, and look forward to sharing further titles and information with you as the year goes on. Great things are coming!”
The foreword is written by United in Blood’s Mark Jones. Mark Jones was co-creator of the Jon Pertwee and Patrick Troughton TV project Starwatch.
Night of the Intelligence is available for pre-order now, for £8.99 (+ p&p). You can pre-order it individually or as part of the discounted UK bundle for only £26.25 (including postage), saving £9.72, or an international bundle for only £37.00 (excluding postage), saving £5.97.
The Anniversary Intelligence bundle can be ordered now, for £26.25 (including postage), saving £21.71, or an international bundle for only £47.00 (excluding postage), saving £12.96.
The Schizoid Earth is written by David A McIntee and read by Terry Molloy.
Lethbridge-Stewart was supposed to be in the mountains of the east, but things didn’t quite go according to plan. On the eve of war, something appeared in the sky; a presence that blotted out the moon. Now it has returned, and no battle plan can survive first contact with this enemy.
Why do the ghosts of fallen soldiers still fight long-forgotten battles against living men? What is the secret of the rural English town of Deepdene? Lethbridge-Stewart has good reason to doubt his own sanity, but is he suffering illness or injury, or is something more sinister going on?
Plagued by nightmares of being trapped in a past that never happened, Lethbridge-Stewart must unravel the mystery of a man ten years out of his time; a man who cannot possibly still exist.
All pre-orders have now been dispatched. The seven disc unabridged audio CD is available priced £18.99 and also on Download priced £13.99. The next two titles will be released in July 2016. You can subscribe direct from Fantom for only £60 for all four releases – saving over £15!
In other news, the guys at Traveling the Vortex has just reviewed the latest short stories, In His Kiss, The Black Eggs of Khufu and (exclusive to The HAVOC Files), The Enfolded Time. They are joined for the last hour of the podcast by range editor and author Andy Frankham-Allen to discuss UNIT dating and offer a bit of insight into the latest happenings of the Lethbridge-Stewart range. Listen HERE!
We get many emails and enquiries from readers about the timeline of the Lethbridge-Stewart novels, in particular how they relate to the short stories Candy Jar Books give out as incentives to those purchasing the books direct from them. (Titles are links to the best places to purchase/download the titles.)
This is the official reading order.
The Ambush by Andy Frankham-Allen (set in February 1969, this shows the events of episodes one and two of The Web of Fear from Lethbridge-Stewart’s point of view).
The Forgotten Son by Andy Frankham-Allen (set during March 1969, with the prologue taking place prior to The Web of Fear).
Legacies by Norma Ashley (set during February and March 1969 in an alternative timeline, with the final scene taking place just before the epilogue of The Forgotten Son).
One Cold Step by David A McIntee and Andy Frankham-Allen (set April 1969, with the flashback material just prior to The Schizoid Earth).
The Schizoid Earth by David A McIntee (set during April 1969, and an alternative 1959. Epilogue set on May 3rd).
The Cult of the Grinning Man by Tom Dexter (set early May 1969).
Beast of Fang Rock by Andy Frankham-Allen (set primarily during May 1969, as well as 1823 and 1902 [leading directly into Horror of Fang Rock]).
Mutually Assured Domination by Nick Walters (set during early June 1969).
The Fright Before Christmas by Tom Dexter (set December 24th 1969).
Hope this all helps. See you in the new year… Which reminds us.
From everybody at Candy Jar Books: HAPPY NEW YEAR! 🙂
We are very glad to announce that the long-awaited David A McIntee novel, The Schizoid Earth, is available for all to buy. All pre-orders have been shipped out and should reach readers over the next few days (overseas readers should allow for usual delivery duration).
All day today we’re on Facebook and Twitter asking your questions about the Lethbridge-Stewart series, just hashtag #AskCandyJar to send your questions to us.
You can purchase The Schizoid Earth from our shop page.
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.’
‘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.’
‘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.’
‘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?
‘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.
Legacies by Norma Ashley:
Random chance. That’s all it takes to change everything. What would happen had Colonel Lethbridge-Stewart and the Doctor failed to stop the Great Intelligence?
A free 34-page story exclusive for those who pre-order The Schizoid Earth directly from Candy Jar Books. The offer ends September 24th 2015, and only applies to pre-orders for the paperback. The Schizoid Earth by David A McIntee is released on September 25th 2015.
Order details HERE.