So, the wonderful TimeLordArchives has reviewed my story in Defending Earth.
“Overall: I very much appreciated having a decent, if short, adventure here, with characters that I love, from a period of the Doctor’s life that I love. It was quite a pleasant surprise to find this story, and I recommend it.”
If you want to read the review it you can read the full review here and on reddit here
Reminder: These reviews are NOT spoiler free.
Sarah Jane Smith is one of my favourite fictional characters. She's everything you want in a heroine, smart and funny, with soft edges and willing to take on the world to do the right thing.
When I had the opportunity to pitch my idea to Mary-Helen, I never thought I would seriously get the chance to do something as special as I have for this anthology. Not only do I get to write Sarah Jane during her adventures on Bannerman Road, I had the chance to explore a 'what it' story that has been on my mind for at least three years. Along side some marvellous writers who I am lucky to class as my friends.
And then they landed me the bombshell and asked me to do all the interior and cover art work. I couldn't have been more thrilled!
My story is set during Sarah Jane’s later years whilst she lives at 13 Bannerman Road. Clyde Langer is attending open days to study illustration but he and Sarah Jane noticed that this university isn't all what it seems. Who is the mysterious grey haired man and who is his prisoner?
In the future, when the charity anthology is in print, I'd love to show you the process in which some of my inner drawings were created, but for now you'll have to wait in wonder.
Featuring stories by:
Josh Wanisko and his daughter, Lily Wanisko
William J. Martin
Tina Marie DeLucia
All proceeds will go to the Cancer Research Institute.
You can order your physical copy here and get a digital copy straight away!
In honour of Jacqueline Hill's 89th Birthday, I can now announce that #MildCuriosites is now available to pre order. Please keep in mind digital orders need to be sent manually, so there might be a little delay. Get your Ian and Barbara goodness here!
This is where you can purchase your copy of Mild Curiosities, A Doctor Who fanzine inspired by the first two companions Ian and Barbara. All of the proceeds will be going to Breast Cancer Now the biggest breast cancer charity in the UK.
Here is our list of contributors:
Katie and Claire Lambeth
William J Martin
Introduction by John Dorney,
Poetry from Beth Axford
Sneak Peak of stories here: http://timetravelnexus.com/mild-curiosities-a-doctor-who-charity-anthology-sneak-peak/
Goodreads link here: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/43312620-mild-curiosities
Today is the 55th anniversary of the Doctor Who, a show that I love and admire, and has changed my life. You may be aware that since Doctor Who was shown on Twitch I have been putting together an unofficial charity fanzine to promote the two first companions to (unwillingly) travel with the Doctor in his time ship and have marvellous adventures.
So today seemed to be a good day to give you some news!
Officially, the fanzine will be available to purchase on the 17th December, 2018 for Jacqueline Hill's 89th birthday and the funds will go towards Breast Cancer Now, the UK’s largest breast cancer research charity in her memory.
Contributor announcements will be coming very soon but in the mean time, here is a first look at the front cover.
With Twitch broadcasting Doctor Who’s original series to a wide audience this month, I was thrilled to discover that Ian Chesterton and Barbara Wright, two of the Doctor’s first companions, were being discovered and adored for the first time by a new generation of fans; or in some circumstances, rediscovered by an older loving audience. These two unwilling schoolteachers were originally kidnapped by the Doctor and opposed to his lack of understanding became in time a beautiful friendship as they travelled around time and space with him, with hope they would get home back to London 1963.
I wanted to find a way of celebrating these first companions who help shape the Doctor into the hero, the idiot, the hermit, the mad man in a box that most of us know him as today. Ian and Barbara, who were born into a different generation: wartime childhoods, postwar young adulthoods, Cold War professional careers that shaped them into the people they became—and the person the Doctor became.
Mild Curiosities is a collection of short stories from various points in their lives, arranged in chronological order with a mix of art, fiction, and non-fiction articles about these two much-loved teachers.
I would like to invite you all to write and illustrate various points in these character’s lives. These stories should be 2-10 thousand words in length, though I’m welcome to flash fiction and longer stories (just talk to me first!). They can be first or third person.
The proceeds from this collection will be going to Breast Cancer Now, the UK’s largest breast cancer research charity. The donations will be given in loving memory of Jacqueline Hill, who would have been 89 this year.
You can reach me at email@example.com
See PDF linked below for submission instructions and deadlines.
I drew this image for an article I wrote for the Time Travel Nexus, which is a superb website for those like minded souls if you're interested in checking it out, and might I add, myself aside some pretty awesome people -- and I thought I'd share it with you.
I am going to miss Peter so much, and though I personally had many an issue with the Christmas Special (perhaps, like my other reviews, I should talk about it as a one off as it does involve the First Doctor....) I felt the cast were spectacular, and I know that they put their hearts into their performances. I just hope that Peter will still enjoy being part of Doctor Who, and it's long history.
Whilst I actually get all of my thoughts collected for a special post about Long Island Doctor Who Convention, I wanted to tell a story about something very special that happened to me.
It all starts with how I got into Doctor Who in the first place. You see, muggins here didn’t get into Doctor Who until she was nineteen years old. This was in 2008. I had heard of Doctor Who, most British people have, in one way or another, but I had never actively watched it. I had seen the end of some episodes before something else was about to be on that my parents were going to watch but that was it. I was too into Harry Potter, Anime, Lord of the Rings and Gothic Horror to worry about another fandom.
So, let me paint a picture for you: It’s Autumn 2008, I had just started university, nineteen and buzzing to start my animation course (I was going to be the world’s greatest animator for Disney, just you wait!) I was for the first time really meeting a load of like minded people, people with blue and pink in their hair, wearing cool fandom t-shirts and owned toys and models. Something that I had attributed to about three people before this and I was in my element.
And then as friendships formed and university got under way I started to show my worth when computers needing problem solving, or someone needed something set up to do with the wifi, that sort of thing. I was able to cotton onto the problems fairly quickly and I always have had a bit of a knack for it.
That’s when it happened, a fellow friend in the Anime Society gave me a big smile, “You’re like K-9. Good job, Soph.”
Now I don’t remember the ins and outs of the conversation, but it ended with me learning about this tin dog from Doctor Who who was a technical support to the Doctor. I was intrigued and the nickname stuck.
That all sounds fun, I said and his other friend said to me with sheer delight, “Oh, you’ve never watched it? Come over this weekend, there’s a new one on!”
And so I did.
My first Doctor Who episode was The Waters of Mars. I was struck by the story, the intensity, and the use of time travel, something that I loved because of Back to the Future in my preteens. Suddenly, I become a whovian, and in dribs and drabs over the last decade my love for the show in its totality has increased to what it is today:
Utter obsession about covers it.
So, speaking of today, flash forward to nine years later, Autumn 2017. I get to go to my first full Doctor Who Convention. Long Island Who 5 was a wonder, in the nine years of being a fan, I fell in love with the classic series, with the companions. I particularly fell in love with the Twelfth Doctor, and his world and it was something i could explore in the hotel walls with so many others.
But because of that nickname at university, I always had a soft spot for the wonderful K-9 who once I met in School Reunion, I also fell in love with.
I found out that John Leeson was going months after I had bought the three day pass. I had had the opportunity to meet him a month before the big New York Trip in my current city of Cardiff but I had wanted to meet him during the big event. After all, it would make our meeting far more unique.
And gosh, it really was as unique as I hoped. When he signed the picture I picked out I told him the story of how I came to be called K-9. This bright twinkly old man who could have been my grandfather who used his K-9 voice to greet me seemed taken aback with joy by my story.
“One K-9 to another, I hope you enjoy this autograph.”
I thought that was the end of it, a little emotional, a little shaky, but boy was I wrong. As the day continued, I found myself going to the bar to find my friends and one particular friend had spotted John Leeson at the bar.
“Should I go over and say hello?” she asked me nervously, and I assured her there was nothing to be worried about, John had been very pleasant to me when I had gotten my autograph after all.
When he saw us approach, he waved, and I introduced my friend, and he shook her hand, and then did something I had never expected.
“Would you lovely ladies care to join me for a drink?”
So here I was, sat with the voice of K-9, partaking in a drink from the bar he insisted on paying, listening to him talk to me about his airplane trip, his opinions on my hometown, and then how much he loved cats and wine, being that they were the other two loves in his life. Honestly, I’ve never felt so blessed to be in a place at a particular time. The only reason why our conversation was halted was because he was discovered by an old friend’s sister, and he excused himself so politely.
Even after that, whenever we ran into each other for the last two days he always greeted me fondly, hand in a wave, twinkly eyed. “Hello friend!”
I’ve never been so touched by an interaction, particularly a celebrity.
The day after the con was over, as our friends gathered to say goodbye and drive off their separate ways, myself included I ran into him one last time. John was also standing in the lobby, and other fans were getting selfies with him as they left the hotel. I decided to say hello one last time and wish him a safe trip home.
And he was of course happy to have a picture with me. “I’ve been waiting for you to ask!”
They say meeting your heroes can be a burden, they can be what you not expect, they can damage your expectations. But I would be mindful to remind others that celebrities are human too, and not every celebrity you meet is going to have the same mindset. If this is the only time I ever run into John Leeson again, I won’t be disappointed. For the rest of my life I will always remember the time the man who my nickname sake, as it were, the reason I got into this lovely sci-fi show in the first place, bought me a drink, and treated me as an equal.
Yes, meeting your heroes are a burden, but it’s always wonderful when you find new ones where you least expect it
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Bedford Charity Event
- April 13th 2019
The Captiol VI
27th - 28th April 2019
3rd - 5th May 2019
We Are Cult - Bristol
22 Jun 2019
31 Aug 2019
September 8th 2019
8th September 201
November 22nd - 24th