Friday, June 04, 2004

Waiting for Unity

Yesterday's mail included a parcel with two Doctor Who hardcovers. That reminded me of a current thread at the TrekBBS in which people are lamenting the long time they have to wait before Unity, a novel in the consistently enjoyable (and often downright brilliant) DS9 relaunch, comes out in paperback. Me, I bought the hardcover and read it in one glorious afternoon.

Anyway, it occurred to me I've been getting a lot of Doctor Who hardcovers lately, so I made a little list.

Shell Shock (Telos novella)

Short Trips: A Universe of Terrors (short story anthology)

Cabinet of Light (Telos novella)

Fallen Gods (Telos novella)

Short Trips: Muses (short story anthology)

Doctor Who: The Legend (big, expensive coffee table book)

Life During Wartime (Bernice Summerfield spinoff short story anthology)

Doctor Who: The New Audio Adventures: The Inside Story

Frayed (Telos novella)

Eye of the Tyger (Telos novella)

Short Trips: Steel Skies (short story anthology)

Companion Piece (Telos novella)

Blood and Hope (Telos novella)

Doctor Who: The Audio Scripts

Doctor Who: The Audio Scripts Volume Two

The Dalek Factor (Telos novella)

Short Trips: Past Tense (short story anthology)

Doctor Who: The Audio Scripts Volume Three

Those are all hardcover books. At least two or three of those are more than one year old, but I bought all of them within the last twelve months. The Telos novellas are hardcover books with about 80 to 120 pages of material for £10 (about $25 Canadian). Most of the other books cost a bit more. To the best of my knowledge, none of them will ever be reprinted in paperback. Making things worse, Telos lost its licence and by the end of this month their books will be pretty much unavailable (fewer books to buy in future, at least). So do some shopping at Telos now! I particularly liked Kim Newman's novella, Time and Relative, but Telos lists it as sold out. They must have copies of some of their books left, though. And you can probably find a copy of Time and Relative on ebay...

Point being, for the folks who can't afford to buy Unity in hardcover: things could be worse. At least you know that there will definitely be a reasonably priced paperback edition in a few months.

Being 41 years old has its downside sometimes, but having a decent job and a working wife with a great deal of patience really helps when you're in the grips of a mad fannish enthusiasm.

And I've been in this mad fannish enthusiasm for Doctor Who for about three years now. That's pretty late for something that's been around almost as long as I have. It would have been a lot easier if I'd started any of the other times I almost dived in, especially in terms of collecting the New Adventures and Missing Adventures books. But three years ago wasn't a bad time to start. The number of available audios wasn't quite as overwhelming as it is now. Doctor Who Magazine and the Toronto-based Who fanzine Enlightenment both ran good feature articles on the NAs (it was their tenth anniversary). Diamond Comics listed what was then the only volume of I, Who, the guide to Doctor Who books. The Telos novellas hadn't yet started, nor had the Faction Paradox moved out of the BBC Eighth Doctor Adventures books and into their spinoff audios, books, and comics. BBC hadn't yet had their distribution crisis and tracking down most of their novels was as easy as making a couple of trips to the World's Biggest Bookstore in Toronto. Not to mention the fact that I've been able to join the rest of fandom in the excitement over, first, The Scream of the Shalka and, more importantly, the new TV series. I think I got into this at a pretty good time.

(Now playing: Sonic Youth, "New Hampshire," Sonic Nurse.)


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