Monday, 20 June 2016

Happy Quarter-Century To Doctor Who – The New Adventures

It may seem like we’ve forgotten about the New Adventures, but we never do. It’s just that life has increasingly got in the way of blogging for both of us. Alex’s health has ever-more complications; Richard is ever-busier, not just with work but with the politics that Alex isn’t able to do so much of any more. This week Richard is out all spare hours and Alex as much as he’s able campaigning for the sort of Britain both of us learned to believe in from Doctor Who – outward-looking, embracing the other, facing the future and above all championing times of love over hate.

If you’re reading this before Thursday, please vote, and please vote Remain. If you want facts, Richard can persuade you. If you want feelings, Alex will implore you.

But today is also the twenty-fifth anniversary of the publication of the first of the Doctor Who – New Adventures.

If you’ve come here wondering what’s so special about the New Adventures, that we have written. We started Time’s Champions with not so much statements of intent as declarations of love. What the New Adventures mean to Alex. What the New Adventures mean to Richard. We may not have made terribly much progress since, but we still believe every word.

First published on 20th June 1991, Timewyrm: Genesys is as far as we got on starting this blog. Or rather, as far as Richard got, and somewhat further than Alex managed. This month, though, Alex has just read the book all over again, and made notes that may just turn into his own review, once the referendum stops consuming too much of our thoughts.

The New Adventures still run through us like a stick of rock. We’ve never stopped talking about them to each other – if not to a blogging audience. When Alex was hospitalised a couple of years ago it was New Adventures that kept going through his mind, two in particular that have since been made New all over again by Big Finish. When we got married, our wedding reading was awash with New Adventures quotations in our own idiosyncratic arrangement (as you may have seen – hello, reader!). And just a week and a half ago, when Alex went along to a signing for a new Doctor Who-related book of short stories, it was the New Adventures he enthused about to the two authors there. Both of them were still delighted by the range that gave them their big breaks.
“It’s how we both started. The easy thing to do would have been to take established authors and try and teach them about Doctor Who. The brilliant thing about the New Adventures is they took Doctor Who fans and taught them how to be writers.”
So happy quarter-century, Doctor Who – The New Adventures. We both still love you, and hope to be paying you more of the attention you deserve before too long.

And before we sign off again…

If you, dear reader, should have the Photoshop (sort of thing) or Blogger design skills to be able to create a masthead or a template for us based on the New Adventures front and back cover designs, please get in touch.

There is one thing that we’ve managed to do for Time’s Champions. Way back when, we published a very jumbled photo of the complete New Adventures and realised that they were never all going to fit on the Happy Endings poster: “We’re going to need a bigger photo…”

Well, we took a bigger photo. Two sets on two different days, in fact. One tottering on the edge of the bed and one tottering on the edge of a wall.

If you step back from your screen and screw your eyes tight, you might even be able to work out what we were trying to do.

Both shoots were, at least, far better-quality than the old one. But rather than a bigger photo, what we could really do with is a studio, a more dependable light source than our good old British sun, and a bigger ‘prop’ to cast a shadow over the range (can you tell what it is yet?). So, again, if you feel like getting in touch…

And if you’re wondering why we’re labelling these with a variety of searchable terms, it’s because no-one seems to have a decent photo of the complete New Adventures online, so while these photos could still be better, so far they seem to be the best.

Which means that if whoever nicked the last one for TV Tropes ever looks for a New Adventures assembly again, or anyone else who wants a shot of the collected range, we don’t mind our photo being nicked in the least – but please nick one of the photos that look a bit better this time.

As one famous author nearly put it, happy twenty-five years of the New Adventures getting it off the back of a lorry!

We hope you still love them as much as we do.