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Elizabeth Sandifer

Elizabeth Sandifer created Eruditorum Press. She’s not really sure why she did that, and she apologizes for the inconvenience. She currently writes Last War in Albion, a history of the magical war between Alan Moore and Grant Morrison. She used to write TARDIS Eruditorum, a history of Britain told through the lens of a ropey sci-fi series. She also wrote Neoreaction a Basilisk, writes comics these days, and has ADHD so will probably just randomly write some other shit sooner or later. Support Elizabeth on Patreon.


  1. elvwood
    May 29, 2013 @ 2:08 am

    I love this book. It's still my favourite NSA, and I've read quite a few (thank you, Sheffield Library Service). Glad you like it too!


  2. Daru
    May 29, 2013 @ 3:39 am

    I have not read this book but I think I will now after your essay!

    Did read some of the NSA's but did not think much of them. After reading your essay on The Monsters Inside I understand now. It was not clear as a reader who they were aimed at and it felt like there was something missing.

    This one sounds very good though and I will definitely read it. I have to say, I do love the new range of covers (including the one above) for the 50th new editions.


  3. David Anderson
    May 29, 2013 @ 4:02 am

    I think that Stealers of Dreams is comparable in quality as a novel. Stealers has the more interesting sf premise. (It also contains an indirect apology to Phil for trying to explain away the Land of Fiction in Conundrum.) Only Human has the scenes in Croydon with Jack and a neanderthal, which contrast nicely with Rose and Doctor in alien societies, and foreshadow The Lodger.


  4. Daibhid C
    May 29, 2013 @ 6:40 am

    I liked most of it, but am I the only one who felt a bit uncomfortable about the idea that the plain, working-class Irish woman was perfect for Das because she probably had Neanderthal genes?

    Maybe I am. Sometimes I worry that ever since I read Roberts's review of The Dominators (a redemptive reading of sorts which basically says "No, making fun of pacifists is a good and noble goal") I've become oversensitive to conservative themes in his work.


  5. Pen Name Pending
    May 29, 2013 @ 8:25 am

    If there's an NSA I recommend covering in the future, it's Touched by an Angel. Part of its success comes from how it focuses on a love and loss story between two humans, and it also has the delightful notion of Weeping Angels becoming stuck in television screens.


  6. David Anderson
    May 29, 2013 @ 10:24 am

    I think it would be more that, as Phil said about The Unquiet Dead, any work that throws sufficiently many balls into the air is going to have some come down in unfortunate patterns. It's more important what pattern all the balls together make than what subpatterns you can get out from some of the balls.


  7. David Anderson
    May 29, 2013 @ 10:29 am

    Is there going to be a group entry covering the 50th anniversary reissues generally?


  8. James V
    May 29, 2013 @ 1:21 pm

    Maybe Roberts and Gatiss should collaborate on an awful country single called "Accidental Tory"


  9. elvwood
    May 29, 2013 @ 1:32 pm

    Oh yes, just finished that one – my favourite eleventh Doctor book so far (out of six read). For completeness I'll add that my favourite tenth Doctor books are Prisoner of the Daleks and Wetworld (out of about 30). And that's four books that I like for very different reasons, and with very different atmospheres.


  10. Peteski
    May 29, 2013 @ 5:29 pm

    ^This comment makes me wish blogger had a "like" button.


  11. Corpus Christi Music Scene
    May 29, 2013 @ 6:26 pm

    It might be too late ,but I would like to see you tackle CRACKER. It was the second show I had seen Eccleston in , the first being the brilliant film SHALLOW GRAVE, and his unexpected demise early in the second season was shocking to say the least. I wasnt aware that DW was coming back at all until i saw the trailer on one of the classic DVD releases and was thrilled that Eccleston was The Doctor.


  12. Elizabeth Sandifer
    May 29, 2013 @ 6:38 pm


  13. Cleofis
    May 29, 2013 @ 6:40 pm

    I've yet to actually read any of her Doctor Who work yet, but Una McCormack wrote one of the best Star Trek Expanded Universe novels ever in Hollow Men, and she's done a couple of NSA's, so I'd be willing to bet those are worth a look, by the by.


  14. Corpus Christi Music Scene
    May 29, 2013 @ 7:04 pm

    Wow. Must have missed that one somehow. Thanx


  15. Daibhid C
    May 30, 2013 @ 1:33 am

    @David Anderson: I see your point, but I'd say there's two differences.

    1) This isn't subtext or analogy. It's not that if you squint you can sort of interprete what Jack is saying as suggesting Anna-Marie might have Neanderthal genes. He says precisely that.

    2) In his review of The Unquiet Dead, Phil goes on a bit about the death of the author fallacy, pointing out that no-one, Miles included, actually believed Gatiss held the opinions Miles ascribed to the episode. My problem here is kind of the opposite; I do think of Roberts as being a bit right-wing anyway, so that colours my view of the book.


  16. David Anderson
    May 30, 2013 @ 3:05 am

    The book is going with the positive version of Neanderthals (bigger brains, more innocent). There are forms of racism into which that might play – as in Avatar. But as far as I'm aware, which admittently isn't very far, English anti-Irish racism doesn't make much use of that kind of racist sentiment.


  17. Ununnilium
    May 30, 2013 @ 7:40 am

    And there wasn’t any other way to make Doctor Who – there’s not room on a modern television schedule for a weird sci-fi program with bubble wrap monsters. It has to be done as an absolutely huge program to exist in the first place.

    I could quibble and say that you could do it on a minor cable channel, but really, the "right" place for this sort of thing nowadays is, more than likely, an indie production on Youtube or Blip or such.


  18. Daibhid C
    May 30, 2013 @ 10:13 am

    I dunno, there's the music hall stereotype of the simple Irish labourer (who may or may not be full of homespun wisdom).

    But yes, I'm fully aware that I'm probably reading too much into this. For some reason, knowing that doesn't help…


  19. Galadriel
    May 30, 2013 @ 1:06 pm

    I've had limited access to the New Series Adventures, but I have to contradict your statement that only writers with TV experience write for the line. Novelist Naomi Aldermen wrote Borrowed Time, and The King's Dragon was written by Una McCormack, who wrote novels for both Star Trek and Doctor Who.
    As for novels that wouldn't work on TV, I find Dead of Winter to be one of the best examples. It's written in a semi-epistolary form, allowing a plot twist that would be impossible on TV.


  20. Galadriel
    May 30, 2013 @ 1:08 pm

    I've read both The King's Dragon and Way through Woods–both were beautiful.


  21. Daibhid C
    May 31, 2013 @ 1:40 am

    I feel I should add that at no point did I actually think Roberts was BNP racist or anything. Most moderately right-wing people aren't. But any belief system leads to patterns of thought that need to be kept an eye on, and IMO right-wing beliefs have a strong thread of the Not-We, which evidenced in that Dominators review.

    (I include my own beliefs; I try to keep reminding myself "Yes, that's exactly what a lefty agnostic science-geek would think. Now, is it right?")

    It's like Phil's comment about Tomb of the Cybermen in the James Bond post; they weren't trying to write racist characters, they just weren't trying not to.


  22. Daibhid C
    May 31, 2013 @ 1:47 am

    It's not totally clear, but I think the statement is that the New Series Adventures are "hobbled" because the writers aren't going to get "promoted" to writing for the series itself, unless they had TV experience. As far as I know, Roberts is the only one who did, so he's the only one who made the jump.


  23. Daibhid C
    May 31, 2013 @ 1:55 am

    Ooh, there's a trivia question: How many people have written for both Expanded Universes? I can think of:

    Una McCormack
    James Swallow
    David McIntee
    Chris Roberson (wrote a story in Short Trips: Destination Prague and a Star Trek novella)
    Scott and David Tipton and Tony Lee (wrote the crossover comic)

    Any others?


  24. Andrew McLean
    June 12, 2013 @ 3:26 pm

    John Peel
    Peter David
    Keith R.A. DeCandido
    Chris Roberson
    Ian Edginton
    Tony Lee
    Steve Lyons (sort of – he co-wrote a Trek episode guide)


  25. Elizabeth Sandifer
    June 12, 2013 @ 3:27 pm

    What's Peter David done in Doctor Who? I missed that.


  26. Daibhid C
    July 17, 2013 @ 6:38 am

    Andrew, I said Chris Roberson and Tony Lee!

    I'm very embarrassed I forgot about DeCandido, though. I wasn't familiar with Ian Edginton (I must have read his DWM strip, but the name didn't stick in my head), and oh, God that's right, Peel wrote a couple of early TNG novels and YA DS9 stories. Anyone know how bad they were? (I might be being unfair. The blurbs on Memory Alpha don't exactly fill me with confidence, but then, 90s Pocket Books blurbs never do.)

    Phil, Checking the DW Wiki, a story called One Fateful Knight in Short Trips: The Quality of Leadership, which is apparently a sequel/prequel to Battlefield and may also tie in to PAD's Knight Life series.


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