Virgin Books, or Virgin Publishing, was the book publishing arm of Virgin Enterprises which published licensed Doctor Who fiction and non-fiction during the early-to-mid 1990s. Under the Doctor Who Books imprint, Virgin published the Doctor Who New Adventures (1991-99) and Missing Adventures (1994-97) novels, as well as the Virgin Decalogs (1994-97) anthologies and Licence Denied, a collected anthology of fan writing edited by Paul Cornell.
After the BBC withdrew Virgin's licence, the New Adventures continued with Bernice Summerfield as the primary character to continue publishing stories take place in the Doctor Who universe but do not feature the Doctor.
Virgin were famous for opening their doors to submissions from new writers, often from fandom: Cornell, Gary Russell, Lawrence Miles, Kate Orman, Dave Stone and others all started at the company. In 2013, Russell said: "With hindsight of course, you go, 'It's because [new writers]'re bloody cheap, and they couldn't afford big posh writers to keep doing Doctor Who books because they had to do them on a shoestring'. But nevertheless, that ability to open up that market to unknown writers was phenomenal". 
With the show's return in 2005, Virgin published an unofficial reference book Who's Next: An Unofficial and Unauthorised Guide to Doctor Who.
In 2007, a decade after they stopped publishing official Doctor Who material, Random House gained majority shareholding, effectively ending Virgin's life as an independent publishing company. Like BBC Books, it now exists as an imprint in the Ebury Publishing division. Due to them now sharing a publishing company, since 2014 a handful of Virgin novels have reemerged as BBC Books reprints.
Illustrations[edit | edit source]
Other than the cover art, most Virgin Books contained no illustrations. Illustrations were included in Lucifer Rising, Blood Heat, All-Consuming Fire, Sky Pirates!, and Sleepy of the Virgin New Adventures and The Empire of Glass and The Plotters of the Virgin Missing Adventures.
Rereleases[edit | edit source]
Starting in 2002, Nightshade, Human Nature, Lungbarrow, The Dying Days of the Virgin New Adventures and The Empire of Glass, The Scales of Injustice, The Well-Mannered War, and The Sands of Time of the Virgin Missing Adventures were rereleased as free ebooks on the Doctor Who website with new cover art and new illustrations.
The Scales of Injustice, The Sands of Time, and Shakedown were reprinted as part of The Monster Collection in 2014. The English Way of Death and Human Nature were reprinted as part of The History Collection in 2015.
Logos[edit | edit source]
The New Adventures and other Doctor Who tie-in books and merchandise focusing on the Seventh Doctor era generally used the Seventh Doctor's logo as seen on television. Virgin also created an exclusive version of the classic "diamond logo" for use on the Missing Adventures and other material focusing on the eras of then-past Doctors. However, the Virgin logo itself was rarely, if ever, used on any Doctor Who output.
[edit | edit source]
- Virgin Worlds - Writer's Guide
- Virgin Books website
- Virgin Books at the Penguin Random House UK website