Apr. 25th, 2017

wossname: Iconograph of a morepork (MOREPORK!)
"Join us on the 28th April for Discworld Day! To celebrate the launch of The Terry Pratchett Owl Parliament, we're hosting a special day for Discworld fans filled with special guests and additional educational talks."

Programme:




Tickets: Adult: £15.95; child 3–6: £12.95; child 7–15: £13.95; child under 3: Free; family: £49.95; concession: £13.95. "All visitors who arrive in Discworld-themed costume on the day will receive a discounted entry rate of £10 per person."

Here be a selection of what's going to be going, going, gone at the Discworld Day Auction:




Birdworld is located at Holt Pound, Farnham, Surrey GU10 4LD and is open every day from 10am to 6pm (4.30pm during winter hours), with last admissions one hour before closing. "As well as caring for and breeding as many species as possible at the park, Birdworld operates a conservation fund set up to support local and international conservation initiatives. We regularly donate money and assist various wildlife charities by sending our staff to pass on their expertise in animal care."

http://birdworld.co.uk/
https://twitter.com/BirdworldSurrey
wossname: (Blue plaque)
*DISCWORLD DAY AT THE OXFORD STORY MUSEUM!

Last year's Discworld Day theme was The Amazing Maurice and his Educated Rodents. This year, it's... The Truth!

"Discworld Day sees The Story Museum celebrating the work of much loved author Terry Pratchett. This year’s Discworld Day at The Story Museum is based on Terry Pratchett’s best-selling novel The Truth.

"The Truth tells the story of William de Worde, the accidental editor of the Discworld’s first newspaper. New printing technology means that words just won’t obediently stay nailed down like usual. There’s a very real threat of news getting out there. Now he must cope with the traditional perils of a journalist’s life – people who want him dead, a recovering vampire with a suicidal fascination for flash photography, and the man who keeps begging him to publish pictures of his humorously shaped potatoes. William just wants to get at the Truth. Unfortunately, everyone else wants to get at William. And it’s only the third edition…

"Take part in printing workshops learning how newspapers were before the digital age, create your own newspaper comic, meet Otto Shreik Discworld’s only Vampire photographer and pick up your copy of the Ankh Morpork Times to catch up with the latest news..."

The Discworld Dinner ("The Truth Shall Make Ye Hungry") is already sold out, but here's what the lucky ticketholders will be getting: "a very special two course dinner party with guest of honour Ben Aaronovitch, bestselling author of the Rivers of London book series and self-professed Pratchett fan. The evening will include a fish and chip supper (wrapped up in yesterday’s copy of the Ankh Morpork Times), a Q&A with Ben Aaronovitch, and a special Discworld quiz compiled by Stephen Briggs (reader of the Discworld audio books), with the chance to win a limited edition Discworld print by artist Barry Bulsara."

When: Saturday 27th May 2017
Venue: Story Museum, 42 Pembroke Street, Oxford OX1 1BP (phone (0)1865 790050)
Time: 10am–5pm
Tickets: free with museum entry – Adult: £7.50
Under-18s and concessions: £5
Family ticket: £20 (4 people including at least 1 child)
Children under 2 and companions of disabled visitors: free

Editor's note: a 12-month Annual Pass (Adult: £18.75, Child: £12.50) can be purchased. Children aged 11 and over may visit The Story Museum unaccompanied provided that they have their parents’ or guardians’ permission.

http://www.storymuseum.org.uk/whats-on/discworld-day-truth/




* PUFFIN PRATCHETT PODCAST!

"Celebrate Terry Pratchett Day at your school with a show all about The Wee Free Men! Hosted by CBBC's Ed Petrie, your class will learn all about Terry's remarkable imagination and writing process, plus find out top tips for creating their own magical worlds.

"Show highlights you can look forward to:

"Terry Pratchett’s best friend and right-hand man Rob Wilkins answering your questions

"A draw-along with illustrator Laura Ellen Anderson

"Writing tips from authors Dave Rudden (Irish Children’s Book of the Year Knights of the Borrowed Dark),

"Robin Stevens (Murder Most Unladylike) and Jennifer Bell (The Uncommoners)

"A crash course in speaking like a Wee Free Man – get ready to do your best Scottish accent!

"See your school name on screen! Send in your class's weirdest and most wonderful answers to the following question: What would be in your imaginary world?"

When: 28th April 2017
Venue: on the Clacks!
Time: 2pm–2.30pm

To register for this event, go to http://puffinvirtuallylive.co.uk/author/TerryPratchettDay2017 and click on the "create an account" button in the yellow-bordered textbox.

Teachers! To download The Wee Free Men Teacher Resources, go to:
http://puffinvirtuallylive.co.uk/WFMTeacher%20Resources_final.pdf

What is Puffin Virtually Live?

"Imagine if you could ask your favourite author anything . . . Puffin Virtually Live gives millions of children the opportunity to do just that. It is a free series of curriculum-tailored webcasts starring children’s authors and illustrators.It brings stories to life and encourages reading for pleasure for Key Stage 2 pupils. It is watched in classrooms around the world. Each 30-minute episode is comprised of author interviews (led by questions from the online audience), fun videos, draw-alongs and theatrical performances. The show is designed for formal learning: curriculum-linked lesson plans accompany every event, providing teachers with book extracts and all the tools they need to prepare their classes pre-show, and to stimulate classroom discussion post-event. Most schools outside big cities would never get the opportunity for an author visit – but through Puffin Virtually Live, millions of children around the world can meet their heroes, and all they need is an internet connection."

http://puffinvirtuallylive.co.uk/


wossname: (Plays)
See the April issue of Wossname (also forthcoming) for more details...


wossname: (GNU Terry Pratchett)
Wossname
Newsletter of the Klatchian Foreign Legion
April 2017 (Volume 20, Issue 4, Post 1)


********************************************************************
WOSSNAME is a free publication offering news, reviews, and all the other stuff-that-fits pertaining to the works of Sir Terry Pratchett. Originally founded by the late, great Joe Schaumburger for members of the worldwide Klatchian Foreign Legion and its affiliates, including the North American Discworld Society and other continental groups, Wossname is now for Discworld and Pratchett fans everywhere in Roundworld.
********************************************************************

Editor in Chief: Annie Mac
News Editor: Vera P
Newshounds: Mogg, Sir J of Croydon Below, the Shadow, Mss C, Alison not Aliss
Staff Writers: Asti, Pitt the Elder, Evil Steven Dread, Mrs Wynn-Jones
Staff Technomancers: Jason Parlevliet, Archchancellor Neil, DJ Helpful
Book Reviews: Annie Mac, Drusilla D'Afanguin, Your Name Here
Puzzle Editor: Tiff (still out there somewhere)
Bard in Residence: Weird Alice Lancrevic
Emergency Staff: Steven D'Aprano, Jason Parlevliet
World Membership Director: Steven D'Aprano (in his copious spare time)

oooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooo


INDEX:

01) QUOTES OF THE MONTH
02) EDITOR'S LETTER
03) ODDS AND SODS
04) DISCWORLD CONVENTION NEWS
05) DISCWORLD PLAYS NEWS
06) DISCWORLD MEETING GROUPS NEWS
07) DISCWORLD ARTS AND CRAFTS NEWS
08) AROUND THE BLOGOSPHERE
09) ROUNDWORLD TALES
10) IMAGES OF THE MONTH
11) CLOSE

oooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooo

01) QUOTES OF THE MONTH

"We're extremely proud to be hosting Discworld Day in honour of the official opening of the Terry Pratchett Owl Parliament at Birdworld. April 28 marks Sir Terry's 69th birthday and to celebrate this special day with an event such as this we hope will be a fitting tribute to the award-winning author. We are looking forward to being able to showcase such an extraordinary selection of owl species, many of which are threatened with the loss of habitat in the wild and for visitors of all ages to immerse themselves in the mysterious world of Sir Terry Pratchett in the process."
– Mark Anderson, general manger of Birdworld

"You are powerful, though. *You* could rule the world," said Nightshade. "Really?" said Tiffany. "Why should I want to do that? I am a witch. I like being a witch, and I like people too. For every nasty person, there's a nice one, mostly. There is a saying, 'What goes around comes around', ad it means that sooner or later you will find yourself on top, at least for a while. And another time, the wheels turns and you will not* be on top but you have to put up with it."
– The Shepherd's Crown, Doubleday hardcover, p.230

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02) LETTER FROM YOUR EDITOR

The 28th of this month would have, *should* have, marked Sir Terry Pratchett's 69th birthday. There is nothing we can do about this dreadful state of affairs, but we can – and should – ever continue to speak his name, celebrate his life and work, and buy his books. Even if you own your own copy of every Pratchett novel, there are new generations to give those books to as presents... friends, children, friends' children, nieces, nephews, and on and on so that the ripples never fade. Long ago, I would give away copies of The Little Prince or The Wind in the Willows to special people as coming-of-age presents, but at some point in the '90s I added Pratchett books and never looked back. And as for celebrating Sir Pterry's life and work, look at section 3 for some notable events taking place this coming week...

Fans of steam might want to keep tabs on the doings of the Gloucestershire Warwickshire Steam Railway: "A heritage steam railway is set to become 'one of the best in the country' after raising £1.25m to fund a track extension, its bosses claim. The Gloucestershire Warwickshire Steam Railway launched a public appeal to complete its 'last mile' a year ago. It currently runs between Cheltenham and Laverton but has long planned to extend to Broadway in Worcestershire. After an 'overwhelming response' it will reach the Cotswolds village for the first time since 1960. The project involves extending the volunteer-run line and building a new station at Broadway, similar to the original which was demolished soon after closure. Chris Bristow, the line's finance director, said extending the track will enable the line to become one of the best in the country for steam services..."

http://www.bbc.com/news/uk-england-39614067

What one famous Terry brought out of the shadows, another famous Terry is now happy to discuss – as best he can. Most of you will know by now that Terry Jones of Monty Python fame has frontotemporal dementia (FTD), another form of dementia that destroys the ability to communicate in words. Here be an piece well worth reading – an interview in The Guardian, in which Mr Jones is assisted by his daughter Sally and his dear friend and ex-Python colleague Michael Palin:

https://www.theguardian.com/society/2017/apr/16/monty-python-terry-jones-learning-to-live-with-dementia

According to The Bookseller, the Folio Society's gorgeous limited edition of Mort turned out to be the fastest selling title in Folio history, selling out all 500 copies in 13 hours. Oh, to have been one of the lucky purchasers...

Right, on with the show!

– Annie Mac, Editor

%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%

03) ODDS AND SODS

3.1 TERRY PRATCHETT DAY – IN SCHOOLS! ON THE CLACKS!

"Celebrate Terry Pratchett Day at your school with a show all about The Wee Free Men! Hosted by CBBC's Ed Petrie, your class will learn all about Terry's remarkable imagination and writing process, plus find out top tips for creating their own magical worlds. Show highlights you can look forward to:

"Terry Pratchett's best friend and right-hand man Rob Wilkins answering your questions
"A draw-along with illustrator Laura Ellen Anderson
"Writing tips from authors Dave Rudden (Irish Children's Book of the Year Knights of the Borrowed Dark),
"Robin Stevens (Murder Most Unladylike) and Jennifer Bell (The Uncommoners)
"A crash course in speaking like a Wee Free Man – get ready to do your best Scottish accent!

"See your school name on screen! Send in your class's weirdest and most wonderful answers to the following question: What would be in your imaginary world?"

When: 28th April 2017
Venue: on the Clacks!
Time: 2pm–2.30pm

To register to receive and/or participate in th podcast, go to http://puffinvirtuallylive.co.uk/author/TerryPratchettDay2017 and click on the "create an account" button in the yellow-bordered textbox.

Teachers can do download The Wee Free Men Teacher Resources: http://puffinvirtuallylive.co.uk/WFMTeacher%20Resources_final.pdf

What is Puffin Virtually Live?

"Imagine if you could ask your favourite author anything . . . Puffin Virtually Live gives millions of children the opportunity to do just that. It is a free series of curriculum-tailored webcasts starring children's authors and illustrators.It brings stories to life and encourages reading for pleasure for Key Stage 2 pupils. It is watched in classrooms around the world. Each 30-minute episode is comprised of author interviews (led by questions from the online audience), fun videos, draw-alongs and theatrical performances. The show is designed for formal learning: curriculum-linked lesson plans accompany every event, providing teachers with book extracts and all the tools they need to prepare their classes pre-show, and to stimulate classroom discussion post-event. Most schools outside big cities would never get the opportunity for an author visit – but through Puffin Virtually Live, millions of children around the world can meet their heroes, and all they need is an internet
connection."

http://puffinvirtuallylive.co.uk/

3.2 DISCWORLD DAY AT THE PRATCHETT PARLIAMENT OF OWLS

"Join us on the 28th April for Discworld Day! To celebrate the launch of The Terry Pratchett Owl Parliament, we're hosting a special day for Discworld fans filled with special guests and additional educational talks."

Programme:

10.00am – Park Opens. Please take this time to explore the park, answer our Discworld quiz and take a photos with the Birdworld photographer!

12.00pm – Official opening ceremony at the Terry Pratchett Owl Parliament with Rob Wilkins and Stephen Briggs which is followed by the Discworld Day Auction.

1.30pm – A Q&A with Rob Wilkins and Stephen Briggs in the Discovery Theatre followed by book signing.

2.30pm – Outdoor flying display at the outdoor arena

3.00pm – Draw of the Discworld Day Raffle and fancy dress prize award at the outdoor arena

3.30pm – Penguin feeding at Penguin Beach

4.00pm – Owl Prowl at the Terry Pratchett Owl Parliament

6.00pm: Park Closes

Tickets: Adult: £15.95; child 3–6: £12.95; child 7–15: £13.95; child under 3: Free; family: £49.95; concession: £13.95, available online at http://birdworld.co.uk/product-category/tickets/ (NOTE: there is a 15% discount for online ticket purchase, plus a free guidebook per transaction)

"All visitors who arrive in Discworld-themed costume on the day will receive a discounted entry rate of £10 per person."

Birdworld is located at Holt Pound, Farnham, Surrey GU10 4LD and is open every day from 10am to 6pm (4.30pm during winter hours), with last admissions one hour before closing. "As well as caring for and breeding as many species as possible at the park, Birdworld operates a conservation fund set up to support local and international conservation initiatives. We regularly donate money and assist various wildlife charities by sending our staff to pass on their expertise in animal care."

http://birdworld.co.uk/
https://twitter.com/BirdworldSurrey

From the Farnham Herald:

"The beautifully-crafted exhibit has been created in collaboration with the World Owl Trust and has been named in honour of award-winning author Sir Terry Pratchett to reflect his well-known love of wildlife and, in particular, all species of owl. As well as showcasing a wonderment and diversity of owls from the magical snowy owl to the reputedly wise long-eared owl, the Terry Pratchett Owl Parliament will aim to educate and raise awareness of these amazing birds. The display will also provide an interactive space for visitors to learn fascinating facts about strigiformes – the order in which owls belong. The Owl Parliament has been created both as a satellite of the World Owl Trust's collection and to recognise Sir Terry's passion for these mysterious birds of prey. Visitors familiar with Pratchett's popular Discworld novels will easily recognise a number of the references but with the unique stylising of these aviaries, everyone exploring the exhibit will be drawn into the mythical and wonderful world of the late Sir Terry Pratchett. To celebrate the day, visitors will be invited to attend the official opening ceremony and to explore the unique aviaries for themselves before joining in with plenty of Discworld fun and games throughout the day, including a themed quiz trail, a charity raffle and auction packed full of prizes, educational talks and even a special question-and-answer session with Rob Wilkins and Stephen Briggs..."

http://bit.ly/2oQeMgA

3.3 DISCWORLD DAY AT THE OXFORD STORY MUSEUM

Last year's Discworld Day theme was The Amazing Maurice and his Educated Rodents. This year, it's... The Truth!

"Discworld Day sees The Story Museum celebrating the work of much loved author Terry Pratchett. This year's Discworld Day at The Story Museum is based on Terry Pratchett's best-selling novel The Truth. The Truth tells the story of William de Worde, the accidental editor of the Discworld's first newspaper. New printing technology means that words just won't obediently stay nailed down like usual. There's a very real threat of news getting out there. Now he must cope with the traditional perils of a journalist's life – people who want him dead, a recovering vampire with a suicidal fascination for flash photography, and the man who keeps begging him to publish pictures of his humorously shaped potatoes. William just wants to get at the Truth. Unfortunately, everyone else wants to get at William. And it's only the third edition…

"Take part in printing workshops learning how newspapers were before the digital age, create your own newspaper comic, meet Otto Shreik[sic] Discworld's only Vampire photographer and pick up your copy of the Ankh Morpork Times to catch up with the latest news..."

The Discworld Dinner ("The Truth Shall Make Ye Hungry") is already sold out, but here's what the lucky ticketholders will be getting: "a very special two course dinner party with guest of honour Ben Aaronovitch, bestselling author of the Rivers of London book series and self-professed Pratchett fan. The evening will include a fish and chip supper (wrapped up in yesterday's copy of the Ankh Morpork Times), a Q&A with Ben Aaronovitch, and a special Discworld quiz compiled by Stephen Briggs (reader of the Discworld audio books), with the chance to win a limited edition Discworld print by artist Barry Bulsara."

When: Saturday 27th May 2017
Venue: Story Museum, 42 Pembroke Street, Oxford OX1 1BP (phone (0)1865 790050)
Time: 10am–5pm
Tickets: free with museum entry – Adult: £7.50
Under-18s and concessions: £5
Family ticket: £20 (4 people including at least 1 child)
Children under 2 and companions of disabled visitors: free

Editor's note: a 12-month Annual Pass (Adult: £18.75, Child: £12.50) can be purchased. Children aged 11 and over may visit The Story Museum unaccompanied provided that they have their parents' or guardians' permission.

http://www.storymuseum.org.uk/whats-on/discworld-day-truth/

3.4 YOUNG PTERRY WROTE FAN MAIL...

...to JRR Tolkien! From The Australian:

"When JRR Tolkien published his first story of a questing hobbit 80 years ago he had no inkling of the fan mail that would follow, or the frustration it would bring. Long before social media ­allowed authors to satisfy fans with online postings, Tolkien was beset with messages of adulation from fellow writers, a president's daughter, a young Terry Pratchett, a future queen of Denmark and Joni Mitchell. The letters, which have not been seen by scholars or the public, will go on display next year at the Bodleian Library in Oxford in the exhibition Tolkien: Maker of ­Middle-earth. The letters and the replies show how Tolkien was at first flattered but eventually overwhelmed in the mid-1960s when sales of The Lord of the Rings trilogy soared... Pratchett, whose Discworld novels became the most successful fantasy series since Tolkien's work, was 19 and a reporter for the Bucks Free Press when he sent a letter praising Tolkien's novella Smith of Wootton Major. 'An odd feeling of grief overcame me as I read it,' he wrote..."

http://bit.ly/2pr9sSl

3.5 ALZHEIMER'S NEWS

Scientists hope they have found a drug to stop all neurodegenerative brain diseases, including dementia. From the BBC:

"In 2013, a UK Medical Research Council team stopped brain cells dying in an animal for the first time, creating headline news around the world. But the compound used was unsuitable for people, as it caused organ damage. Now two drugs have been found that should have the same protective effect on the brain and are already safely used in people. 'It's really exciting,' said Prof Giovanna Mallucci, from the MRC Toxicology Unit in Leicester. She wants to start human clinical trials on dementia patients soon and expects to know whether the drugs work within two to three years...

"When a virus hijacks a brain cell it leads to a build-up of viral proteins. Cells respond by shutting down nearly all protein production in order to halt the virus's spread. Many neurodegenerative diseases involve the production of faulty proteins that activate the same defences, but with more severe consequences. The brain cells shut down production for so long that they eventually starve themselves to death. This process, repeated in neurons throughout the brain, can destroy movement, memory or even kill, depending on the disease. It is thought to take place in many forms of neurodegeneration, so safely disrupting it could treat a wide range of diseases..."

http://www.bbc.com/news/health-39641123

%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%

04) DISCWORLD CONVENTION NEWS

SCHEIBENWELT NEWS

The 2017 German Discworld Convention (Scheibenwelt) takes place next month, with Guests of Honour Rob Wilkins and Bernard Pearson – and there will be another special guest!

"Stephen Briggs' first public appearance in Germany! 5.3.2017 We have just received confirmation from Stephen Briggs! He will be present at the German Discworld Convention in May. Among other things, he will give his first signing session in Germany and there will be the possibility of a personal conversation in a small group during our first Klatch."

They'll be rocking the castle with workshops, shepherding, mediaeval weaponry, the inimitable Pat Harkin and much more... here be a list of workshops, talks and events:
http://www.discworld-convention.de/#/en/Info/Workshops

http://www.discworld-convention.de/
https://twitter.com/SWConvention
https://www.facebook.com/ScheibenweltConvention

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05) DISCWORLD PLAYS NEWS

5.1 PLAYS IN MAY AND JUNE

* WYRD SISTERS IN WIMBLEDON (MAY)

The Carlton Theatre Group will present their production of the Stephen Briggs adaptation of Wyrd Sisters, directed by Richard Broughton, next month: "This fantastical, satirical, retelling of a certain 'Scottish Play' is sure to put a smile on your face. We invite you to an evening of magical mayhem, a comical brew of good witches, divers soldiers, peasants, wicked aristocracy, a ghost and a fool… With an amazing cast, and suitable for ages 12+, this play is a perfect option for a family outing."

When: 9th – 13th May 2017
Venue: New Wimbledon Studio Theatre, The Broadway, Wimbledon, London SW19 1QG
Time: all evening performances (Tuesday-Saturday) 7.45pm, Saturday matinee 3pm.
Tickets: £15.40 (Theatre Card members £14.00), no fees. To purchase online, go to http://www.atgtickets.com/
shows/wyrd-sisters/new-wimbledon-studio/

http://www.carltondramaticsociety.org/current-production

* MASKERADE IN BERKSHIRE (MAY)

The Newbury Dramatic Society will stage their production of Maskerade, directed by John Hicks (possibly with the help of a skull ring?), in May: "In the Ankh Morpork Opera House, a strangely familiar evil mastermind in a mask and evening dress is lurking in the shadows. He lures innocent young sopranos to their destiny, commits occasional murder, and sends little notes full of maniacal laughter and exclamation marks. Opera can do that to a man. But Granny Weatherwax, the Discworld's most famous witch, is in the audience and she doesn't hold with that sort of thing... and the show must go on!"

When: 17th–20th May 2017
Venue: Watermill Theatre, Bagnor, Newbury, Berkshire RG20 8AE
Time: 7.30pm Wednesday to Friday, 6.30pm Saturday
Tickets: £12.50 (£12 concessions), available online at https://www.watermill.org.uk/maskerade#dates-ttab or ring the Box Office on 01635 46044

https://www.watermill.org.uk/maskerade

* WYRD SISTERS IN MILTON, FOURECKS (JUNE)

Milton Follies are bringing Wyrd Sisters to the stage in June.

When: 9th-18th June 2017
Venue: Milton Theatre, 69 Princes Highway, Milton, New South Wales (phone 02 4454 3636)
Time: evening shows (9th, 16th) 8pm, Saturday matinees (10th, 17th) 4pm, Sunday matinees (11th, 18th) 2pm
Tickets: $25 (children, concessions and group tickets $20), available online now from Ticketbooth at https://events.ticketbooth.com.au/event/wyrd-sisters and from the 24th of April at Splatters at https://splatters.com.au/

https://miltonfollies.org/portfolio/wyrd-sisters/
http://www.miltontheatre.com.au/

* WYRD SISTERS IN YORK (JUNE)

After their successful run of Mort last year, We Are Theatre are gearing up for another Discworld production. This time it's Wyrd Sisters!

When: Tuesday 20th and Wednesday 21st June 2017
Venue: Joseph Rowntree Theatre, Haxby Road, York
Time: 7.30pm all shows
Tickets: £10.00 – £12.00, already available online at https://www.josephrowntreetheatre.co.uk/eventids/923 or by ringing the Joseph Rowntree Theatre Box Office on 01904 50 1935

https://www.josephrowntreetheatre.co.uk/performers/we-are-theatre.php


5.2 PLAYS LATER IN 2017

* GUARDS! GUARDS! IN CARDIFF (AUGUST)

The next exciting Discworld play presented by Monstrous Productions will be Guards! Guards!

"Keep an eye on our website and social media streams for more information."

When: 16th–19th August 2017
Venue: The Gate Arts Theatre, Keppoch St, Cardiff CF24 3JW
Time: TBA
Tickets: £8 (£6 concessions), available soon

http://monstrousptc.com/
https://twitter.com/MonstrousPTC/
https://www.facebook.com/MonstrousProductionsTheatreCompany/

* WYRD SISTERS IN THE LAND OF FEEGLES (AUGUST/SEPTEMBER)

Monifieth Amateur Dramatics (MAD) will be staging their production of Wyrd Sisters, directed by Steven Armstrong, in August: "Stephen Briggs has been involved in amateur dramatics for over 25 years and he assures us that the play can be staged without needing the budget of Industrial Light and Magic. Not only that, but the cast should still be able to be in the pub by 10 o'clock!"

When: 24th-26th August and 31st August-2nd September 2017
Venue: Monifieth Theatre, 72 High Street, Monifieth, Angus DD5 2AE
Time: 7.30pm all shows
Tickets: £9 (£6 concessions), available from Troups Pharmacy, Monifieth; Yorkshire Buiding Society, Broughty Ferry; and The Bay Diner/Grill, Monifieth. Ring 01382 480043 for details. Tickets are also available online at http://www.monifieththeatre.co.uk/tickets

http://www.monifieththeatre.co.uk/whatson

* LORDS AND LADIES IN BRISBANE (SEPTEMBER–OCTOBER)

Brisbane Arts Theatre will be presenting their next Discworld play, Lords and Ladies – adapted by Irana brown – next September!

"Granny Weatherwax and Nanny Ogg – the witches of Lancre – are the Discworld's only hope of rescue when elves threaten to take control with their hypnotic 'glamour'. Standing stones, wizards, Morris men, rude mechanicals, country lore and ancient magic all combine in this adaptation of one of Sir Terry's finest. With a full supporting cast of dwarves, wizards, trolls and one orangutan, the hilarious Lords and Ladies delivers an abundance of hey-nonny-nonny and blood all over the place."

When: 16th September – 21st October 2017
Venue: Brisbane Arts Theatre, 210 Petrie Terrace, Brisbane, QLD 4000
Time: 7.30pm Thursdays, 8.00pm Fridays & Saturdays, 6.30pm Sundays
Tickets: Adults $34, Concession $28, Group 10+ $27, Student Rush $15 (10 mins before curtain), available online at
http://sa2.seatadvisor.com/sabo/servlets/TicketRequest?&presenter=AUBAT&event=LANDL

"Subscribers can redeem season tickets for this show. There are no refunds or exchanges once tickets have been purchased."

http://www.artstheatre.com.au/show/lordsandladies

* MORT IN READING (OCTOBER)

Twyford and Ruscombe Theatre Group will present their production of Mort, "an off beat tale of bacon, eggs and destiny", in October!

"Terry Pratchett's Discworld will once more be gracing the stage at Loddon Hall. We are putting on a production of Mort, which will involve a large cast, plenty of dramatic moments and a lot of laughs."

When: 5th–7th October 2017
Venue: Loddon Hall, Loddon Hall Road, Twyford, Reading, Berkshire, RG10 9JA
Time: 8pm all shows
Tickets: £7, £8, £9 and £10, available online at http://www.ticketsource.co.uk/event/171598

http://www.twyrusdrama.org.uk

* RAISING STEAM IN ABINGDON! (NOVEMBER)

A little birdie (possibly an owl) at the Studio Theatre Club says: "Don't tell anyone yet (this is just between you and us), it's still a long way off (November 2017!), we've only just had the formal permission for a new play and Stephen's still writing it, but he thinks it's about time he tackled another of the novels, and the third in the Moist von Lipwig Trilogy might just be the right one. It's been on his to-do list for a while...he thinks he owes it to Terry..."

When: 22nd–25th November 2017
Venue: the Unicorn Theatre, 18 Thames St, Abingdon OX14 3HZ
Time: 7:30pm all evening shows, Saturday 25th matinee 2:30pm
Tickets: £10 (Wednesday 22nd, Thursday 23rd); £11 (Friday 24th, Saturday 25th). "Tickets are not yet on sale. News here when they are!"

http://www.studiotheatreclub.com/discworld


5.3 REVIEWS

DODGER IN PORTSMOUTH

By David Putley in the Daily Echo

"IT is all in the perspective" says Charles Dickens (a suave, eloquent Jo Allen) in this highly entertaining adaption of Terry Pratchett's book by Stephen Briggs. Playfully directed by Chris Blatch-Gainey, a multi-skilled cast mix fictional with real notable Victorians. Dodger (an athletic, charming, roguish Tom Rawlings) rises from the underbelly of the sewers to mix with the likes of Disraeli (an arch David Powell), Angela Burdett-Coutts (a bankable Sarah Miatt) and even Q.V. herself. Ben Gainey brought pathos to Sweeney Todd whilst Lorraine White's Mrs Sharples hilariously failed to grasp the concept of personal space. Bob Bell's witty Soloman as a Faginesque mentor added much humour to a script peppered with literary and political references, many of which resonate today. Dodge not, if you can.

http://bit.ly/2nF1Id4

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06) DISCWORLD MEETING GROUPS NEWS: UPDATES AND REMINDERS

The Broken Drummers, "London's Premier Unofficially Official Discworld Group" (motto "Nil percussio est"), still claims on their website to be meeting next on Monday 30th November 1999, but it's more more likely to be on Monday 8th May at the Monkey Puzzle, 30 Southwick Street, London, W2 1JQ.

"We welcome anyone and everyone who enjoys Sir Terry's works, or quite likes them or wants to find out more. We have had many visitors from overseas who have enjoyed themselves and made new friends. The discussions do not only concern the works of Sir Terry Pratchett but wander and meander through other genres and authors and also leaping to TV and Film production. We also find time for a quiz."

For more information, go to http://brokendrummers.org/ or email BrokenDrummers@gmail.com or nicholls.helen@yahoo.co.uk

*

Canberra, Australia's Discworld fan group is Drumknott's Irregulars: "The group is open to all, people from interstate and overseas are welcome, and our events will not be heavily themed. Come along to dinner for a chat and good company. We welcome people from all fandoms (and none) and we would love to see you at one of our events, even if you're just passing through. Please contact us via Facebook (_https://www.facebook.com/groups/824987924250161/_) or Google Groups (_https://groups.google.com/forum/#!forum/drumknotts-irregulars_) or join us at our next event."

*

For Facebook users in Fourecks: The Victorian Discworld Klatch is "a social group for fans of Discworld and Terry Pratchett... run by a dedicated team who meet monthly and organise events monthly." "If you'd like to join our events please ask to join the Klatch."

https://www.facebook.com/groups/VictorianDiscworldKlatch

*

"The Gathering of the Loonies (Wincanton chapter)" is a public Facebook meeting group: "This group, by request of Jo in Bear will continue to be used for future unofficial (not run by the Emporium) fan Gatherings in Wincanton. Look here for information." [Editor's note: this is an active group. If you use Facebook, it may be worth joining!]

https://www.facebook.com/groups/373578522834654/

*

The Pratchett Partisans are a fan group who meet monthly at either Brisbane or Indooroopilly to "eat, drink and chat about all things Pratchett. We hold events such as Discworld dinners, games afternoons, Discworld photo scavenger hunts. We also attend opening night at Brisbane Arts Theatre's Discworld plays." The Partisans currently have about 200 members who meet at least twice a month, usually in Brisbane.

For more info about their next meetup, join up at https://www.facebook.com/groups/pratchettpartisans/ or contact Ula directly at uwilmott@yahoo.com.au

*

The City of Small Gods is a group for fans in Adelaide and South Australia: "We have an established Terry Pratchett & Discworld fan group in Adelaide called The City of Small Gods, which is open to anyone who would like to come – you don't have to live in Adelaide or even South Australia, or even be a Discworld fan, but that's mostly where our events will be held, and we do like discussing Pratchett's works. Our (semi-) regular meetings are generally held on the last Thursday of the month at a pub or restaurant in Adelaide. We have dinner at 6.30pm followed by games until 9pm. The games are usually shorter games like Pairs, Sushi Go, or Tiny Epic Defenders, with the occasional Werewolf session, as these are the best sort of games that work in a pub setting. Every few months, we have a full day's worth of board games at La Scala Cafe, 169 Unley Rd, Unley in the function room starting at 10am. In addition, we will occasionally have other events to go and see plays by Unseen Theatre Company, book discussions, craft, chain maille or costuming workshops or other fun social activities."

The next CoSG event will be the Monthly Social Meet at the Caledonian Hotel on 27th April. For more info, go to www.cityofsmallgods.org.au

*

The Broken Vectis Drummers meet next on Thursday 4th May 2017 (probably) from 7.30pm at The Castle pub in Newport, Isle of Wight. For more info and any queries, contact broken_vectis_drummers@yahoo.co.uk

*

The Wincanton Omnian Temperance Society (WOTS) next meets on Friday 5th May 2017 (probably) at Wincanton's famous Bear Inn from 7pm onwards. "Visitors and drop-ins are always welcome!"

*

The Northern Institute of the Ankh-Morpork and District Society of Flatalists, a Pratchett fangroup, has been meeting on a regular basis since 2005. The Flatalists normally meet at The Narrowboat Pub in Victoria Street, Skipton, North Yorkshire, to discuss "all things Pratchett" as well as having quizzes and raffles. Details of future meetings are posted on the Events section of the Discworld Stamps forum:

http://www.discworldstamps.co.uk/forum/

*

Sydney Drummers (formerly Drummers Downunder) meet next on Monday 1st May 2017 at 6.30pm in Sydney at 3 Wise Monkeys, 555 George Street, Sydney,2000. For more information, contact Sue (aka Granny Weatherwax): kenworthys@yahoo.co.uk

*

The Treacle Mining Corporation, formerly known as Perth Drummers, meets next on Monday 1st May 2017 (probably) from 5.30pm at Carpe Cafe, 526 Murray Street, Perth, Western Australia. For details follow Perth Drummers on Twitter @Perth_Drummers or join their Facebook group: https://www.facebook.com/groups/Perth.Drummers/ – or message Alexandra Ware directly at <alexandra.ware@gmail.com>

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07) DISCWORLD ARTS AND CRAFTS NEWS

7.1 DISCWORLD EMPORIUM NEWS

* The 2018 Discworld Calendar

"It's never too early to announce a Discworld calendar! Available to pre-order, the Collector's Edition Discworld Calendar for 2018 features the artwork of both Josh Kirby AND Paul Kidby – two iconic Discworld Illustrators, one fantastically functional work of Discworld art!"

The 2018 Discworld Calendar is priced at £14.99 and will be published on the 17th of August 2017. For more information, and to pre-order, go to: https://www.discworldemporium.com/23-diaries-calendars

* The Ankh-Morpork Jigsaw Puzzle

"The Fiendishly Difficult Discworld Puzzle is back! You can't get enough of this perplexing pastime (much to our own puzzlement), and keeping this dastardly jigsaw in stock is as much a challenge as the puzzle itself – It's probably best to nab this while you can!!"

The Ankh-Morpork Jigsaw Puzzle is priced at £ 19.50. For more information, and to order, go to:
https://www.discworldemporium.com/games-activities/240-ankh-morpork-a-fiendishly-difficult-discworld-puzzle

* The Discworld Graphic Novels

"The Discworld Graphic Novels are BACK IN STOCK! The Colour of Magic & The Light Fantastic adaptations by Scott Rockwell and Steven Ross were first published in parts waaay back in 1991 and 1992, but nowadays they are available bound together in this handsome hardback for comic book fans!"

The Discworld Graphic Novels duo is priced at £15. For more information, and to order, go to:
https://www.discworldemporium.com/other-pratchett-works/49-the-discworld-graphic-novels-the-colour-of-magic-the-light-fantastic-hardback

* The Colour of Magic/Light Fantastic Omnibus Edition

"The Colour of Magic and The Light Fantastic Omnibus is now in stock at the Emporium! This beautiful hardback edition from Terry's original publisher Colin Smythe features the inimitable artwork of Josh Kirby, and lovely holographic detailing on the cover. A fine acquisition for the new collector!"

The tCoM/tLF Omnibus Edition is priced at £17.99. For more information, and to order, go to:
https://www.discworldemporium.com/discworld-novels/363-the-colour-of-magicthe-light-fantastic-omnibus

* The Tiffany Aching Gift Editions

"Following on from the release of The Wee Free Men later this month, the rest of the beautiful Tiffany Aching Gift Editions will be released together on the Glorious 25th of May, each with a free Turtle Moves bookmark from us! These lovely hardbacks feature new character artwork by Paul Kidby, and exclusive endpapers featuring Paul's beautiful new illustration of the Chalk. The Wee Free Men is out April 27th & available to pre-order separately."

...and the Tiffany Aching paperback editions: "One can never have enough Tiffany Aching or Nac Mac Feegles, so we're thrilled to have these additional editions aimed at encouraging new young readers into discovering Discworld!"

The Gift Editions are priced at £12.99 each. The paperback editions are priced at £7.99 each. For more information, and to pre-order, go to:
https://www.discworldemporium.com/19-new-books

http://www.discworldemporium.com/

7.2 DISCWORLD.COM NEWS

* The Ankh-Morpork Pin

"Remember me? Originally released by the original C.M.O.T Dibbler himself, way back in the day, we're pleased to reintroduce the Ankh Morpork Pin. It's a 3D design in brass metal, plated with real gold, gold, gold. With a butterfly pin fastening, this pin badge is just the right size to be worn on a lapel, a tie, or anywhere else to show off your Morporkian citizenship."

Each Ankh-Morpork pin measures 25mm x 25mm x 1.6mm nd is priced at £4.50. For more information, and to order, go to:
http://discworld.com/products/badge/ankh-morpork-pin/

* The Death on Binky Canvas Print

"This canvas print reproduces one of the most beautiful pieces of artwork from Paul Kidby's The Last Hero, and depicts Death atop his faithful – and very much alive – steed Binky."

The Death on Binky Canvas Print is available in two sizes – 300mm x 400mm, priced at £35.00, and 380mm x 500mm, priced at £48.00. The "official" page (_http://discworld.com/products/artwork/death-on-binky-canvas-print/_) seems to be blank apart from the image, but you can order by going to http://discworld.com/products/new/ and scrolling to the relevant box, then clicking on the desired purchase button.

* The Map 'n' Monsters mug

"Despite being cruel and unusual, we don't think geography is a mug's game. This new addition to our popular mug range features Paul Kidby's map from The Last Hero reproduced in beautiful detail, and includes your recommended daily portion of sea monsters."

Each Map 'n' Monsters mug is priced at £8. For more information, and to order, go to:
http://discworld.com/products/discworld-merchandise/map-n-monsters-mug/

7.3 JOSH KIRBY ART PRINTS NEWS

For Pratchett-and-Kirby fans blessed with a goodly amount of disposable income...

"We are incredibly proud to announce that as of right now you can pre order Series One of our Limited Edition Discworld Prints! We have created three options to choose from, so that everyone can take home a piece of Josh Kirby and Terry Pratchett's legacy! All are numbered, authenticated and signed by the estate. We are confident that you will love these as much as we do!"

1: Discworld Limited Edition: "Similar in size to Josh Kirby Discworld prints you've seen in the past but with superior paper quality. Limited to 500 worldwide. 18" X 23" (457mm x 584mm)."

The Discworld Limited Edition prints are priced at £59 each. For more information, and to pre-order, go to:
http://bit.ly/2q8C7I3

2: Discworld Collector's Edition: "Larger than the Limited Edition above, on archival smooth, matte paper. Limited to 250 worldwide. 20" X 25" (508mm x 635mm)."

The Discworld Collector's Edition prints are priced at £99 each. For more information, and to pre-order, go to:
http://bit.ly/2oZmYuV

3: Out of This World Edition: "Extremely limited run and the largest size ever created in a Discworld print, with extraordinary, incomparable archival paper quality this is a must for collector's and begs to be framed for proud display. Limited to 100 worldwide 22" X 28" (558mm x 741mm)."

The Out of This World Edition prints are priced at £199 each. For more information, and to pre-order, go to:
http://bit.ly/2puc0zc

*Please allow 4 to 6 weeks for delivery

http://bit.ly/2pZQLVF

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08) AROUND THE BLOGOSPHERE

The Past Due Book Review on Interesting Times:

"Interesting Times is filled with references to feudal Japan and ancient China. The people of the Agatean continent live in a state of forced isolationism; they believe everything outside their continent to be inhabited by ghost-vampires and refusing to believe otherwise because there was no one brave or curious enough to find out if it was true (until Twoflower, that is). The Red Army is also reminiscent of the Terracotta warriors that guard the tomb of the first emperor of China. Interesting Times takes the goofiness of Pratchett's humor and the wit necessary to craft a story that is not only entertaining, but one of the better works of fantasy I have ever read. The jokes are quick and serve the plot, rather than the reverse, and the story sets up the next book of Rincewind's adventures nicely. Pratchett hits a high point with one of the standouts in a series filled with wonderful storytelling..."

https://thepastduebookreview.com/2017/04/19/interesting-times-review/

Jonathan Feinstein on the Long Utopia book and audiobook:

"The main story was a tapestry woven with characters from previous books of the series and some new ones, including Joshua, Lobsang (an artificial intelligence who thinks he is a reincarnated Tibetan mechanic) Sister Agnes (one of the nuns who raised Joshua and now in a robotic body), and Sally Lindsay, another natural stepper and the daughter of the inventor of the Stepper Box, the device I mentioned that runs on a potato. In all, however, it is difficult to detect Terry Pratchett's hand in this story and like a few other reviewers I find myself wondering just what he did contribute. Well, the potato thing might be one of his, and Lobsang as well, but the writing seems to have more Baxter than Pratchett in it. And, sadly, like the other books of this series so far, the story does not so much conclude as just pause at the very end, leaving the reader, or maybe just me, left waiting for a denouement that never comes. I can only hope the fifth and final book of the series has a satisfying conclusion...

"Michael Fenton Stevens does the same fairly even reading he has in previous volumes of this series. For the most part he reads well, but every so often he makes the mistake of trying to read a character in a funny voice or an outrageous accent. Very few readers can pull that off and not be annoying and Mister Stevens is not one of them..."

https://jonathanfeinstein.wordpress.com/2017/04/16/an-audio-book-review-an-infinite-earth-with-finite-people/

The Idle Woman on Witches Abroad:

"I always enjoy the three witches, who have such wonderfully complementary characters and whose conversations fizz with authenticity. Nanny Ogg is a particular favourite – I'm sure we all know someone like her – and I was pleased to see brief reappearances of the Hedgehog Song and A Wizard's Staff Has A Knob On The End. Magrat is, as ever, gently misguided and has given up some of her earth-motherliness in favour of the martial arts of the mystic east (having decided quite firmly that marrying the king, as seemed to be an option at the end of Wyrd Sisters, isn't her thing). And Granny Weatherwax is, as ever, far sharper than anyone around her and powerful in a vast elemental way that goes quite beyond the capabilities of her two coven-mates. But this book isn't just a delight for the main faces. There's a strong cast of secondary characters, of whom the two most striking must be the dwarf Casanunda (the Disc's greatest liar and second-greatest lover), for whom a stepladder is never far away; and, of course, Greebo. Greebo in human form is just a sheer delight – Pratchett has a ball with imagining how this scarred tomcat would translate to man-form... this is vintage Pratchett: a closely-focused story, cheerfully undermining traditional themes, with just the right number of cameos and allusions to spice the story, which barrels along at a fine pace and climaxes with a grand ball at the castle..."

https://theidlewoman.net/2017/04/16/witches-abroad-terry-pratchett/

...and on Reaper Man:

"Reaper Man is another of those books where a lot is going on, and there are parts where it feels that it's trying to be overly epic (the sections with Azrael for example). Death also becomes even more human than he normally is, which doesn't really suit him, although of course there's an element of poignant impossibility about his complex feelings for Miss Flitworth. I still feel that Pratchett is best at chamber works, that is to say, following a single focused storyline rather than splitting his story into several different plots. And, while there are amusing riffs here on traditional English country life (Morris dancing, for example), and popular activism, it just feels… bitty. Not one of the best books in the series, therefore, but a perfectly solid instalment full of the usual chaotic exuberance, and featuring a lot of Ankh-Morpork cameos..."

https://theidlewoman.net/2017/04/13/reaper-man-terry-pratchett/

Author and blogger Dark Dates writes in memory of Pratchett:

"Pratchett's A Slip of the Keyboard is a collection of non-fiction that is a must for any writer. He talks not only about the oddness of literary fame, but the inherent sexism too often found in fantasy (his chapter on the reason there are no male witches or female wizards is fascinating) but also the snobbery and dismissiveness around writing what is classed as 'genre' fiction. Fantasy is not serious, so people who write it are not serious writers – if someone literary (say Margaret Atwood) writes it, it magically becomes transformed into something that is no longer genre. (He also neatly skewers the elitism that often accompanies this, saying 'magic realism' is a term used by reviewers to mean 'fantasy by someone I went to university with'). It's a topic I've written about myself – though obviously he is, ahem, just ever so slightly more eloquent – and it made me think not only about how other people see my books, but also how I do..."

https://darkdates.org/2017/04/10/in-memory-of-terry-pratchett-a-defence-of-genre-fiction-and-reading-and-writing-what-the-hell-you-want/

Takanoir is back with a rave review of Interesting Times:

"To this day I have never before read a book that is a part of a series close to fifty volumes long, finished it, and thought to myself, wow, this was so incredibly good that I am going to commit to finishing the entirety of this ridiculously long saga. The key phrase here was 'never before'. I feel a bit bad by heaping such high praise upon the past five book reviews, but it's probably because I didn't choose these books at random. All of these books were recommended to me, with the exception of Armored, by people whose taste I trusted, so it's not a surprise that I've had good luck in finding books that I consider worthwhile. So, with that out of the way, let me explain to you why this story was so fantastic... I think this was one of the most quotable books I have ever read... Despite all of the ridiculousness, the actual plot of this book is very good. I think this comes together best in the last 80 pages or so, when you realize how brilliantly Pratchett set up the final battle. It would take a while to discuss this, so I'd rather sell the writing itself and simply have you take it on faith that there is indeed a plot, and that the ending is quite satisfying..."

https://shadowwalkingwithwords.wordpress.com/2017/04/08/book-review-5-interesting-times-by-terry-pratchett/

Year 8 student Kaitlyn Search on The Wee Free Men:

"There are many excellent books out there that everyone should read. The Book Thief. Little Women. Scaramouche. But the book that gets you into reading will always be the best book. It might not be your favorite but it will always hold a special place in your heart. For me this book is The Wee Free Men by Terry Pratchett. It's terribly witty and very much hard to describe. It is exactly what you'd expect from a book about a world on a flat disc balanced on the backs of four elephants which in turn stand on the back of a giant turtle, Great A'Tuin. The Wee Free Men is the kind of book you miss when it's over, like you lost a good friend... Terry Pratchett was (he is sadly deceased) the kind of author whose writing is fantastic at its best and great at its worst. The kind of author who believed in intelligent young characters and intelligent young readers whom he believed to be perfectly capable of following a story with multiple layers of complexity. He was the kind of author who sent a nine-year-old girl to battle the queen of fairies with nothing but a frying pan and the help of some little blue crivens-shouting men. If I haven't made it clear, I believe he was a good author. His writing is relatable, magic, and always a joy to read..."

https://pctelanews.wordpress.com/2017/04/13/book-review-the-wee-free-men-by-terry-pratchett/

Fargo Musings muses on Pratchett:

"Small Gods is the book that matters here. I don't think I read a full chapter the first time I opened it up, but my older brother started reading it, so I had to finish it before he did. By now I've probably read that book more than 10 times. And of the 41 novels set in the same world (the Discworld), I've paged through all but three or four. Picking up Small Gods was genuinely a turning point in my life. I started reading a lot more after I started reading Pratchett. Suddenly I could see the tricks and needles and jokes in the text. It wasn't boring. Pratchett is never boring. If you're reading Pratchett and you're not chortling occasionally, then you probably missed something. For those unfamiliar with his writing, all I have to say is try it. I would suggest starting with Small Gods, Guards! Guards! or Going Postal..."

https://fargomusings.wordpress.com/2017/04/02/introducing-terry-pratchett-a-knight-and-a-scholar/

Waistcoats, Gin and Words on Equal Rites:

"The novel is fast paced and flutters all over the place, into magic, into the brewing and spoiling of ales and into some of the mystic of the Unseen University itself. I am a big fan of objects that have a mind of their own in the Disc, Twoflower's Luggage being the most important example of this. I enjoy knowing a Staff has a will of it's own and will beat people who upset it, just as much as I enjoy a chest that runs around of its own accord eating people that upset it. What starts out as a simple journey to the city very quickly turns into protecting the disc from being invaded by slimy things that aren't sure what animals are so buckle lots of horns and claws and wings onto themselves to appear menacing but in fact, look rather comical. But I'm not going to spoil it any further, you should experience the fun for yourself! This is one of the better Discworld novels and I really enjoyed it..."

https://waistcoatsginandwords.wordpress.com/2017/03/29/54-equal-rites/

...and Yvette Kan aka This Volcanic Heart gives Guards! Guards! a 5/5:

"The first time I read Guards! Guards! was three years ago. Really liked it even then, and rereading it only fuels my obsession with Sir Terry Pratchett's Discworld series... When I last read the Discworld series, I made my way by arc: I wiped out Witches and Tiffany Aching, proceeded to devour Rincewind and Unseen University, ploughed through the delightful Death-centred arc, and finally came to the City Watch books. Left the City Watch books for last, because … well, I didn't think they were gonna be all that interesting. Major regrets. Because holy crap, the City Watch characters are too damn fantastic... The thing about Pratchett's novels is that at the first glance, the plot is all over the place. You are thrown violently into the story, and once you get the hang of the ride with one character, you are introduced to another, which you can't help but like too..."

https://yvettekan.com/2017/03/30/review-guards-guards-by-terry-pratchett/

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09) ROUNDWORLD TALES

9.1 FLORAL CLOCKS

We all know about the famous floral clock of Quirm. But did you know that in our world, floral clocks actually do tell the time? Not quite in the same way, though. For instance, the (also famous) floral clock of Edinburgh has gone through some time-telling changes. The clock first entered time-telling service in 1903 with an hour hand; a minute hand was added a year later, and a mechanism to imitate a cuckoo's call a year after that. The display then changed variously over the years, but the original clockwork carried on working until replaced by an electric one 70 years later.

"With tens of thousands of small, colourful plants, the clock takes two gardeners five weeks to plant, and is trimmed, weeded and watered by one gardener for the rest of the season. The clock flowers from July until October. Plants vary each year but some of the more commonly used varieties include Lobelia, Pyrethrum, Golden Moss and succulents such as Echeveria and Sedum... The minute and hour hands measure approximately 2.4m and 1.5m respectively and when filled with plants, the large hand weighs approximately 36kg while the small weighs 22.7kg. The clock itself is 3.6m wide, with a circumference of 11m."

http://www.edinburghguide.com/venue/floralclock

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Floral_clock

9.2 THE SMELL OF BOOKS AND LIBRARIES

You don't have to be a magically transformed orangutan librarian to love the smell of books and libraries, but did you know there's quite a lot of science behind those smells? And would you agree that old books smell like "a combination of grassy notes with a tang of acids and a hint of vanilla over an underlying mustiness"? New studies have made strides at quantifying those scents. Here be some extracts from a very long but quite fascinating piece in the Heritage Science Journal, by Cecilia Bembibre and Matija Strlič:

"We don't know much about the smells of the past. Yet, odours play an important role in our daily lives: they affect us emotionally, psychologically and physically, and influence the way we engage with history. Can this lead us to consider certain smells as cultural heritage? And if so, what would be the processes for the identification, protection and conservation of those heritage smells?... The smell of historic paper was chosen as the case study, based on its well-recognized cultural significance and available research. Odour characterization was achieved by collecting visitor descriptions of a historic book extract through a survey, and by conducting a sensory evaluation at a historic library. These were combined with the chemical information on the VOCs sampled from both a historic book and a historic library, to create the Historic Book Odour Wheel, a novel documentation tool representing the first step towards documenting and archiving historic smells.

"Our knowledge of the past is odourless. Yet, smells play an important role in our daily lives: they affect us emotionally, psychologically and physically, and influence the way we engage with history. In this work, we propose that smells are part of our cultural heritage, and that a structured approach to researching them is required... Odours are powerful triggers for emotions via the limbic system of the brain, which deals with emotions and memory. They are an effective way to evoke recollections; certain aromas can even act as part of the common memory of a generation..."

"The vocabulary we use to describe smells is important and it is essential that a methodology to describe odours for archival purposes includes a sensory description, in addition to the chemical one. In some industries, the human nose is the main tool to characterize odours due to its accuracy and sensitivity... Often, the smell of books intrigues and inspires: a copy of the novel Ulysses which belonged to T. E. Lawrence, and documented as having 'a sweet, somewhat smoky aroma that suffuses every bit of paper and leather', embarked several researchers in a quest to find out the author's life experiences behind the fragrant notes. In this case, association with a prominent author gave significance to the information resulting from the VOC analysis. O. These aromas, along with those of the surrounding furnishings of a historic library space, create the unique smell that many visitors appreciate, conferring significance to this aroma through its communal value. Similarly, users of archives consider smell as an important characteristic of documents; this could be related to the fact that, in the age of digitization, working with physical records is an increasingly rare practice, and therefore the opportunity to touch and smell the documents is perceived as valuable..."

http://bit.ly/2pdgYxa

9.3 SUCKROSE AND AKWA, THE ROUNDWORLD VERSION

According to the British Homeopathic Association, common salt is far more than a condiment: "Salt preserves and it retains – not only fluids, but also old emotions, and unfortunately hoards them like a miser hoards his gold" and is "a remedy of profound importance in the treatment of emotional suffering: the pangs and hurts of life, which are most often hidden from others". If that sounds ridiculous, it's because it *is* ridiculous, but we should never forget the power of the human mind to effect a cure based on belief alone. Granny Weatherwax certainly understood that principle! So if you fancy reading the link below for the lulz, remember that there can sometimes be a grain of sense, if not actual truth in, sugar-water – or salt-water – "cures".

http://www.britishhomeopathic.org/charity/how-we-can-help/articles/homeopathic-medicines/n/nat-mur/

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10) IMAGES OF THE MONTH

A proper Discworld band with rocks in – Sebastian Barwinek, Christian Reiter and friends, who entertain at every Scheibenwelt convention and will be there again next month:
http://www.discworld-convention.de/images/booth/band.jpg

A cute 1st April photo from the Discworld Emporium – all that's missing is Adam and the Them:
https://pbs.twimg.com/media/C8QvviNXYAA8ZG5.jpg

A collage of the exquisite new Tiffany hardcovers by Paul Kidby:
https://pbs.twimg.com/media/C8lSH6BW0AMmtoe.jpg

...and a glimpse of Mr Kidby's new map of the Chalk, as posted by him on Twitter:
https://pbs.twimg.com/media/C8qOigjXYAIDRGq.jpg

The cover of the forthcoming 2018 Discworld calendar:
https://pbs.twimg.com/media/C-HNQAvXcAALYr2.jpg

A Kidby classic – Attack of the Fifty Foot Ginger, from Moving Pictures:
https://theidlewoman.files.wordpress.com/2017/03/moving-pictures-kidby-e1488706241464.jpg

Another small Kidby masterpiece – Dwarf family values:
https://pbs.twimg.com/media/C7_zAQnXgAAX5l6.jpg

A print-and-keep graphic of the various names under which palm oil is disguised on ingredients lists – remember, buying products that use palm oil is contributing to the deforestation that endangers orangutans:
https://pbs.twimg.com/media/C7xhUA5XwAIX7G4.jpg

...and finally, a picture of two baby hedgehogs. Definite cuteness overload, even if we know they can't be... well, you know:
https://pbs.twimg.com/media/C8Gx-1IVAAAubZA.jpg

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11) CLOSE

On the subject of World Book Day, Wikipedia says, "From Middle Ages to 18th century books were often chained to a bookshelf or a desk to prevent theft" and provides a familiar-looking image: https://pbs.twimg.com/media/C-G9MgsUIAAfped.jpg – but we know better, don't we...

And that's the lot for April. Don't forget to start gathering your violets for the Glorious 25th, in a month's time. Take care, and we'll see you in May!

– Annie Mac

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The End. If you have any questions or requests, write: wossname-owner (at) pearwood (dot) info

Copyright (c) 2017 by Klatchian Foreign Legion

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