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“THAT’S HOW IT ALL BEGAN”

With The Eight Doctors, Terrance Dicks launched the BBC Books range of original Doctor Who novels. But the finished manuscript deviates in many ways from his original synopsis, which is reproduced here for the first time.
A note from Terrance Dicks to BBC Books’ Nuala Buffini, written in 1997.
Terrance was chosen to write the first novel in BBC Books’ range of Eighth Doctor Adventures.

The Eight Doctors was published in 1997.

The first page of Terrance’s story outline for ‘Eight Doctors’.

The Eight Doctors was published in June 1997 as the launch title of Eighth Doctor Adventures (EDAs), the ongoing narrative for Paul McGann’s Doctor in the form of monthly novels. The mansucript had been commissioned by my predecessor at BBC Books, Nuala Buffini, for delivery by January, although its author, Terrance Dicks, didn’t actually deliver until February. He was held up, he solemnly informed me, by “trying to make sense of The Trial of a Time Lord”.

Taking over from Nuala as project editor in January 1997, I was both excited and daunted to be working with the man I first met as an eight-year-old at my local library, the man whose work had dominated my childhood bookshelves. Terrance had been briefed to write a novel that would (a) form a bridge between the junior style of the previous year’s Novel of the Film and the more mature approach of later EDAs, (b) reintroduce the different Doctors to new readers brought in by the TV movie, and thus promote the ‘Past Doctor’ range, and (c) introduce the Eighth Doctor’s new companion, Sam. And, of course, Terrance’s name on the front cover was as much a symbol of authority as the Prydonian seal above it, a call to casual readers that, well – here we go again!

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About Doctor Who Magazine

DOCTOR WHO MAGAZINE CELEBRATES ITS 40TH ANNIVERSARY! The celebratory issue comes with: • A 32-PAGE SUPPLEMENT featuring an index of DWM and its sister publications, from 1979 to the present day. • A DOWNLOAD CODE for 11 complete hour-long audio adventures from Big Finish. Other highlights of this issue include: • Exclusive interviews with showrunners Chris Chibnall, Russell T Davies and Steven Moffat. • Doctor Who Weekly’s founding editor Dez Skinn and its original features writer Jeremy Bentham reunite to discuss the magazine’s earliest days. • Doctor Who writer Paul Cornell pays tribute to his friend and mentor Terrance Dicks. • A previously unpublished interview with Terrance Dicks, in which he remembers his working life away from Doctor Who. • Highlights from the original, unpublished manuscript of The Eight Doctors, Terrance’s first commission for BBC Books’ range of original Doctor Who novels. • Professional Doctor Who fiction writers select highlights of Terrance’s Target novelisations and other books. • A look back at how readers’ views of Doctor Who episodes, as expressed in DWM’s Season Survey results, have evolved over the last four decades. • The Fact of Fiction explores the 1979 story The Creature from the Pit. • A fiendishly difficult quiz, all about the first 40 years of Doctor Who Magazine. • Part Two of Mistress of Chaos, a new comic-strip adventure featuring the Thirteenth Doctor and her friends. • Audio reviews, previews, news, prize-winning competitions and much, much more! PLEASE NOTE: THIS DIGITAL MAGAZINE DOES NOT COME WITH THE DVD AVAILABLE WITH PHYSICAL COPIES OF DWM 544