wossname: Clacks rendering of SPEAK HIS NAME to keep Pratchett on the Overhead (Default)
Wossname
Newsletter of the Klatchian Foreign Legion
September 2016 (Volume 19, Issue 9, Post 1)


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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.
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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)

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INDEX:

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

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01) QUOTES OF THE MONTH

"Terry reveals an all-too-sad truth about our relationship to religion, power and personal/national identity. However, his handling of such heavy material is still great fun, and offers many brilliant visuals of which I hope to have captured an inkling."
– illustrator Omar Rayyan, commenting on his work on the Folio Society's illuminated Small Gods

"The current WWF estimates of surviving orang-utan populations are: 6,600 in Sumatra and 54,000 in Borneo."
– Melbourne Zoo

"Whether or not you agree with Terry Pratchett's outspoken views on assisted suicide, it is hard to argue with his logic for living a good life right up until death and dying, as far possible, in your own terms."
– Secret Scribbler, in a Guardian review of The Shepherd's Crown

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02) LETTER FROM YOUR EDITOR

This might just be the latest-posted issue of Wossname ever – certainly the latest-posted in my term of editorship. Many apologies! There are also some features I had hoped to complete that will have to wait, such as our reviews of the Discworld Colouring Book (marvellous!) and The Witch's Vacuum Cleaner (excellent, even better than Dragons at Crumbling Castle, highly recommended); keep an eye on the Wossname blog (_http://wossname.dreamwidth.org/_) for updates, and of course those will be included in the October issue... which I will try to post out on time!

More and more amateur theatre companies around the world are performing Discworld plays. It's heartwarming to see that the number of different Discworld plays is also on the increase: while Wyrd Sisters remains the primary go-to (and is becoming a Halloween season tradition in ever more places), companies are now tackling a more diverse range including Carpe Jugulum, Mort, Amazing Maurice, Going Postal, The Wee Free Men and ever more. What an excellent way of keeping the Terry Pratchett legacy alive, and long may it continue! See section 5 for a round-up of the latest productions.

From heartwarming to heart-breaking: Monty Python co-founder Terry Jones, noted as much for his latter career as a telly presenter, author and keen amateur historian, has been diagnosed with the dementia variant known as primary progressive aphasia (PPA) and can no longer perform or give interviews. PCA robbed our favourite writer of his ability to physically write; PPA has robbed a beloved presenter/performer of his ability to perform. That the public know of Terry Jones' plight at all is a testament to the ceaseless Alzheimer's activism to which Sir Pterry dedicated so much of his final time and energy, and is a stark reminder that he may well be remembered as much for that activism as for his writing.

Right, on with the show!

– Annie Mac, Editor

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03) ODDS AND SODS

3.1 DRAGON AWARD

A new award for The Shepherd's Crown, and one that I'd hope Sir Pterry would have appreciated, despite its keeping company with some very dodgy works – Best Young Adult / Middle Grade Novel at the inaugural Dragon Awards:

"This year's inaugural Dragon Awards were handed out today at Dragon Con in Atlanta, Georgia. The winners show a remarkable contrast to the recipients of this year's Hugo Award winners, one of the major awards in science fiction and fantasy literature. The Dragon Awards were instituted earlier this year in conjunction with the convention's 30th anniversary. The award is designed to be a "true reflection of the works that are genuinely most beloved by the core audience," the larger fan world, rather than the core literary circles that help choose the Nebula Awards and Hugo Awards. The Dragon Awards opened nominations and voting to the general public..."

http://www.theverge.com/2016/9/4/12794666/dragon-award-dragoncon-david-weber-terry-pratchett

3.2 BEAUTIFUL NEW "ILLUMINATED" FOLIO SOCIETY NOVEL: SMALL GODS

The Folio Society continues its offerings of Discworld books with a stunning "illuminated" edition of Small Gods, once again featuring the work of illustrator Omar Rayyan. The Guardian has a feature on it, with reproductions of some of the illustrations. In these, Mr Rayyan seems to me to have channelled the look of Elijah Wood as Frodo Baggins in the Middle Earth films, and I think this is a good thing: it brings a new, very human warmth to the character of Brutha. The Folio Society editions aren't exactly cheap, but if you can afford to spend a bit more on something truly special, this is a must-have!

The Guardian feature: http://bit.ly/2d1a3nj

The Folio Society link for the illuminated Small gods: http://www.foliosociety.com/book/SLL

3.3 REVIEWS: THE SHEPHERD'S CROWN

Somehow we missed this one back in July! A deeply thoughtful review of The Shepherd's Crown in The Guardian by "Secret Scribbler":

"There was certainly an autumnal breeze which seemed to stroke the pages of Terry Pratchett's forty-first and final Discworld novel, much like the penultimate Long Earth story published earlier last summer. The Shepherd's Crown whispered of things unsaid, of time running out, of not being able to leave things exactly the way one wanted. In many ways it is an imperfect, unfinished novel... Everything is set for an epic clash between good and evil. Yet this is no Middle Earth or Narnia; much of the rest of the novel is devoted to Tiffany's backbreaking day-to-day work. In Pratchett's world, witches perform the role of a comprehensive health service, free at the point of need (paid for through favours and kindness), fully integrated with social care like something out of Andy Burnham's wildest dreams. They perform messy, practical, essential services – caring for the sick, ushering babies into the world and escorting people out with as much gentleness as possible, trimming the toenails of lonely old men. Tiffany is spread thin and pulled in disparate directions by her passion for her work; her sense of loyalty to her family; her tentative relationship with medical student Preston. Besides, Terry Pratchett has little time for unadulterated evil in the style of Sauron or the White Witch, though his writing is incandescent with rage against stupidity and cruelty... Is this actually a good novel? To some extent, it doesn't really matter. For a Discworld aficionado, the book's very existence is a kind of miracle, like an unexpected letter addressed just to you..."

http://bit.ly/2bXsqcL

...and a somewhat bizarre (in my opinion, at any rate – Ed.) analysis/review of The Shepherd's Crown, by one Peter L. Edman in the University Bookman:

"It is a testimony to the previous forty tales in the Discworld fantasy universe that the flaws of this story do not completely overshadow its wistful pleasures, at least for the long-time Pratchett reader... The Tiffany novels are targeted at the young adult market, and despite the fantasy tropes of elves and witches, I suspect that the greatest strain on suspension of disbelief for the average reader in Britain and America is Tiffany's bone-deep connection with her land and heritage. But the railroad has come to the Discworld; cold iron is transforming or bypassing the ancient traditions. She must somehow choose what to preserve... Pratchett has been accused—inaccurately—of writing escapist fiction, but it seems no escape is permitted to those disturbed by the dissolution of gender roles and gender identity—the latest effects of the elites' dismemberment of Western culture. Among other examples in the novel, Tiffany takes on a new apprentice, Geoffrey, a boy who eschews traditional roles and wants to be a witch. He is presented as calm and quiet, good with the elderly and with babies, a vegetarian, a natural peacemaker driven by the winds of destiny. He demonstrates no romantic interests. Pratchett's remaining skills do, if barely, keep Geoffrey from becoming a stock allegorical figure of the New Tolerance..."

http://www.kirkcenter.org/index.php/bookman/article/the-last-pratchett

3.4 THIEF OF TIME REVIEW

By Sam Jordison in The Guardian:

"Some humans would do anything to see if it was possible to do it. If you put a large switch in some caves somewhere, with a sign on it saying 'End-of-the-World Switch. PLEASE DO NOT TOUCH', the paint wouldn't even have time to dry. Imagine also a world in which 'democracy at work' is really just reckless and mindless chaos. Imagine a world in which one of the chief aspects of humanity is, as noted by Death (a character with so much gravitas that he always speaks with caps-lock on): 'ARROGANCE, PRIDE AND STUPIDITY.' Sounds familiar, doesn't it? So familiar that reading Thief of Time after the Brexit vote is a strange, disconcerting experience for me. I've just finished the novel and I felt at times that Pratchett, who died in 2015, must have foreseen our current sad story. But it also felt like he was bringing good news. Alongside a few stern words about our collective idiocy, the great writer had a message of hope. Someone in Thief of Time does inevitably push that awful button – which in fact concerns a clock that traps time rather than cuing Article 50– but he reassures us with: “We can learn. That's how humans become humans.” We may do bad things, but there's also something about humanity that helps us go on. It's a comforting thought. But even without my current political obsessions and fears, I'm certain that I'd find other kinds of solace in this wonderful novel. Pratchett understood human nature, for better or for worse. I imagine future generations will be seeing their own mistakes in this novel, just as clearly as I've seen our own. And I find such thoughts comforting: there's nothing new about folly. Humans have always got it wrong, but we've generally muddled through too.

"There are other reasons to find hope in Thief of Time, chief among them that it's a delight to read. The story is as complicated, daft, hilarious and satisfying as vintage PG Wodehouse: part kung fu epic, part philosophical novel, part mind-bending experiment with chaos theory (and a piss-take of those three things)... it's a lampoon. But it's also full of warmth and sympathy. The same is true of the rest of the book. Pratchett may think us fools – but he still likes us. That too is consoling..."

http://bit.ly/2cHcGtT

3.5 REVIEW: SERIOUSLY FUNNY, THE ENDLESSLY QUOTABLE TERRY PRATCHETT

By Karen Jones on Starts at 60:

"Always clever with his witty sayings, some of Terry Pratchett's best quotes adorn the pages of this beautiful little compilation. Divided into categories of Human nature, Romance, Learning and Wisdom, Success, Life and Death, Animals, Religion, Politics, and last but not least, Words and Writing. There are 130 pages of gorgeous, pithy, astute quotes about life and living... I suppose Seriously funny. The endlessly quotable Terry Pratchett could be classed as a coffee table book. As a compilation, it is the perfect size to carry around in your pocket or to leave on your bedside table. It is the sort of book that the reader will want to pick up often just to enjoy a clever quote, or to cheer themselves up when they need a laugh. The depth of wisdom and the scope of wicked humour is a great reminder of the incredible creative talent of the author himself. His imagination seemed to be so vast, his parodies of real life so astute and funny, it is a sad loss that he has now passed away..."

https://startsat60.com/stories/entertain/books/saturday-on-the-couch-seriously-funny

3.6 A GOOD DISCWORLD QUIZ

In The Guardian, a good Discworld quiz (with a nod to general Pratchett titles) features a number of questions, among them:

"What was the name of Pratchett's first published short story, published when he was a teenager? ... Which children's book was Good Omens initially intended to be a parody of? ... Eric is a parody of which classic tale? ... Which classic rock album cover does the cover for Soul Music resemble? ... A collection of travel stories called 'What I Did On My Holiday' became a revolutionary text in which Discworld book? ... What does the motto NVNC ID VIDES, NVNC NE VIDES, carved above the doors of Unseen University, mean?"

http://bit.ly/2d3XuYs

3.7 UNSEEN UNIVERSITY, THE SCHOOL TO CHOOSE

On Epic Stream, a listicle of "10 Awesome Schools from Sci-fi and Fantasy That'd Never Get Boring" gives high marks to UU:

"The school of Wizardry in Terry Pratchett's Discworld universe is another magical one, but unlike Hogwarts, nobody bothers to pretend they know what the hell they're doing. We see a lot of weird experiments with magic rather than busywork. The wizards who run the place are reckless and a bit unhinged, but I'd want to go there anyway. I mean, it has the best library ever- you can read every book ever written in the past, present and future. This library is also run by former-wizard-turned-orangutan. One drawback is that there aren't many women attending, so girls might feel pretty awkward (and the lack of women and general celibacy might be a bummer for any dudes interested in girls as well). Due to the strict gender divide in the magical culture of Discworld, it was quite a while before the first girl attended the university (her name was Eskarina Smith). Witches in Discworld operate differently from wizards and don't really do formal higher education. Thanks to Eskarina's trailblazing, though, girls presumably can attend the school now, even if they're currently in the minority. .."
http://bit.ly/2cv3BQI

3.8 MORE DANGER TO WILD ORANGUTANS THAN THOUGHT

Fresh – and distressing – news about the plight of orangutans in the wild:

"The new Apes Seizures Database paints a more detailed picture, compiling figures for any seizure of a great ape in an unlawful situation dating back to 2005.
'It's definitely a staggering number, it's larger than we expected,' said Doug Cress from the Great Ape Survival Partnership, who have put together the new database. 'We're finding that it's really averaging about two seizures a week around the world. That may seem small but the usual ratio for a chimpanzee is that to get one alive you've had to kill five or 10, for gorillas it's like four to one. That extrapolates quickly to a lot of dead in the wild.'

"Orang-utans were by far the most commonly captured animals, accounting for 67% of seizures by the authorities. It's believed that habitat destruction in Borneo and Sumatra has seen large numbers flushed out of the forests. The conversion of their natural homes into palm oil plantations or for pulp and paper has made the orangutans easy prey for those who want to trade them illegally..."

http://www.bbc.com/news/science-environment-37513707

And speaking of our favourite orange apes, at Melbourne's Federation Square there will be a protest, palm oil labelling petition signing, and display of 1,000 cuddly orangutan toys from on Tuesday 4th October 2016:

"Food manufacturers are still allowed to include palm oil as a vegetable oil on their labels. So you don't realise you may be contributing to the deaths of over 1,000 orangutans a year as their habitat, and that of Sumatran Elephants and Tigers is destroyed through unsustainable palm oil production. Later this year selected Australian Ministers will meet to decide whether Australia will once and for all label palm oil on food products. Add your name to the growing list of over 30,000 Australians who support palm oil labelling."

http://www.zoo.org.au/get-involved/act-for-wildlife/dont-palm-us-off

http://www.zoo.org.au/palmoil/label

...and here be a report from the Melbourne Zoo's World Orangutan Day celebration/information event in August:

http://www.zoo.org.au/news/world-orang-utan-day

3.9 MONSTROUS PRODUCTIONS, ROUNDWORLD'S THEATRICAL DISCWORLD FUNDRAISERS

A lovely feature on Cardiff's Monstrous Productions, who have so far raised more than £20,000 for dementia research through putting on Discworld plays:

"A Cardiff-based theatre company has raised over £20,000 by staging theatrical versions of the late Sir Terry Pratchett's works with all proceeds going to the charity he was patron of, Alzheimer's Research UK. Monstrous Productions Theatre Company has been putting on adaptations of Pratchett's works since 2012. Their latest play, ‘Going Postal', was performed at The Gate Arts Centre, Cardiff, over four nights in August. It raised over £3,000 for the UK's leading dementia research charity, helping the group to reach their fundraising goal of £20,000. Amy Davies, 31, is co-founder and co-director at the company. She directed her first Terry Pratchett play, ‘Monstrous Regiment', with Cardiff University's drama society, Act One, while studying for her Master's degree. The success led to a flood of requests from fans, wanting them to stage more. Now an assistant psychologist with the NHS, Amy has directed seven plays with Monstrous Productions. It was decided from the beginning that all proceeds from the performances should go to Alzheimer's Research UK. Pratchett became a patron of the charity after he was diagnosed with a rare form of dementia called Posterior Cortical Atrophy in 2007... Zoe Baggott, Regional Fundraising Officer at Alzheimer's Research UK, said: 'Monstrous Productions is an amazing group. We're so grateful to them for supporting Alzheimer's Research UK. Not only are they a talented bunch, but they're extremely generous too. 225,000 people in the UK will develop dementia this year – that's one every three minutes. With enough research, we can beat this devastating condition.'..."

http://www.charitytoday.co.uk/pratchett-players-raise-20000-dementia-research/

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04) DISCWORLD GAMES NEWS

From the Backspindle gang, makers of the "Guards! Guards!" and "Clacks" games, have a special offer for UK buyers:

"Free Shipping during October... The Clacks have won! Postal Office charges for Backspindle Games ordered for UK addresses in October 2016 are FREE! This includes our our new acclaimed puzzle game 'Codinca' (recently named the Number 1 themeless game) by the Dice Tower's Sam Healey. Please note: Games ordered between 11-17 October will be dispatched between 19-20 October.

"Discworld Combos: we are very aware everyone likes a bargain, so we are delighted to confirm we have created a Special Offer for those of you who would like to purchase a copy of Clacks! together with a copy of Guards! Guards! The total discount is £10.00 of the total retail price. (While stocks of Guards! Guards! last)
You can access this bargain here: http://www.backspindlegames.com/multigames/ "

Other news, for buyers in America: "Our US partner Ninja Division (_http://ninjadivision.com/_) now has 'all of our games' back in stock: http://ninjadivision.com/backspindle-games/ "

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05) DISCWORLD PLAYS NEWS

EDITOR'S NOTE
A reminder from last month's main issue: "April 2018 would have seen Sir Terry Pratchett's 70th birthday. He had a well-known connection with the theatre, and so to celebrate, why not put on a play? Local theatre companies around the world can use this month to stage any Discworld play, in a great big celebration and commemoration of Sir Terry's life and work. I discussed the idea with Colin Smythe at the DW Convention 2016, and he said it was a good one, go for it. So here we are, going for it. Let everybody know, and book the performance slot at the next planning meeting at your local theatre group!"

There's a Facebook event page for this, which can be found at https://www.facebook.com/events/580653112059960/

To view the original announcement, go to http://discworld.livejournal.com/1107951.html

5.1 NEW: TAMAHER IN CARDIFF (FEBRUARY 2017)

Monstrous Productions carry on from strength to strength! Next up is their February 2017 production of The Amazing Maurice and his Educated Rodents. Stay tuned for updates...

When: 22nd–25th February 2017
Venue: The Gate Theatre, Keppoch Street, Roath, Cardiff CF24 3JW
Time: 7.30pm (2.30pm matinee on the 25th)
Tickets: £7 (£5 concession), available from http://monstrousptc.com/

5.2 NEW: WYRD SISTERS IN BRISBANE (NOVEMBER/DECEMBER)

The Brisbane Arts Theatre is going multi-Pratchett for the back end of 2016! On the heels of their forthcoming production of Guards! Guards! in October and early November, they will be presenting Wyrd Sisters only a few weeks later!

When: 23rd, 27th, 28th, 29th & 30th November and 4th–6th December 2017
Venue:
Time: 8pm Thursdays, Fridays & Saturdays; 6.30pm Sunday matinees (29th November and 6th December)
Tickets: Adults $31, Concession $25, Group 10+ $25, Group 75+ $20, Gold Members $15, Members $25, Student Rush $10 (10 mins before curtain). "Members can redeem their included season tickets for this show. There are no refunds or exchanges once tickets have been purchased." Tickets are not yet available. Watch this space for updates...

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

5.3 NEW: WYRD SISTERS IN BATH (OCTOBER)

The Bathford Players, an amateur company of 50 years' experience, will present their production of Wyrd Sisters this month.

"Adapted by Stephen Briggs, and produced by Ken Tatem, this has been selected specifically to use as many members of the Players as possible in a large cast to celebrate our 50'th anniversary."

When: 19th, 20th, 21st and 22nd October 2016
Venue: Bathford Village Hall, Church Street, Bathford, Bath BA1 7RS
Time: 7.30pm all shows
Tickets: £8, available from the Bathford village shop (01225 859111), or online at http://bathfordplayers.weebly.com/ticket-sales.html

​There's also a Facebook event page at https://www.facebook.com/events/1667203456939738/

http://bathfordplayers.weebly.com/

5.4 NEW: GUARDS! GUARDS! IN WESTERN AUSTRALIA (OCTOBER/NOVEMBER)

"ARENAarts presents its 7th foray into the universe of Discworld Productions. GUARDS! GUARDS! A villainous plot to rule. A city under siege. A dragon on the loose. Adapted from Terry Pratchett's comic fantasy novel, this a fun production for lovers of silliness!"

When: 21st October–6th November 2016
Venue: LC Theatre, 60 Cleaver Terrace, Belmont, W.A. 6104
Time: all evening shows (21st, 22nd, 28th & 29th October, and 3rd, 4th & 5th November) 8pm; all matinees (23rd & 30th October and 6th November) 2pm
Tickets: $22 (concessions $16, children $10, groups of 10+ $15p/p), available online at
https://www.trybooking.com/Booking/BookingDates.aspx?eid=206909

For further information, contact Simon James 08 9399 9947 arenaarts@hotmail.com.au

5.5 NEW: CARPE JUGULUM IN SUFFOLK (NOVEMBER)

The Quaysiders theatre company will be staging their production of Carpe Jugulum in November.

"Having previously staged both 'Mort' and 'Maskerade' this time we continue to follow the antics of Granny Weatherwax, Nanny Ogg and Agnes Nitt as they face their most treacherous foes in the shape of a family of 'modern' vampires. The Vampires are determined to take over the Kingdom of Lancre, and their despicable plan seems to be working… but they hadn't reckoned on the formidable Granny Weatherwax."

When: 10th–12th November 2016
Venue: Seagull Theatre, Morton Road, Pakefield, NR33 OGH
Time: 7.30pm all shows
Tickets: £9 (£8 concessions), available online at http://intelligent-tickets.co.uk/index.php?th=gl

For more information, ring 01502 589726 or email info@theseagull.co.uk

http://www.theseagull.co.uk/event/carpe-jugulam/

5.6 NEW: WYRD SISTERS IN NEWPORT, WALES (NOVEMBER)

The Newport Playgoers Society are staging their production of Wyrd Sisters in November!

When: 15th–19th November
Venue: Dolman Theatre, Kingsway, Newport, NP20 1HY
Time: 7.15pm (evening shows); 2.30pm (Saturday 19th matinee)
Tickets: £12.50 (students £8.50, concessions £11), available online at http://bit.ly/2dDR5kr – there is a booking fee of £2.00 per per transaction.

"For more information about this performance, please contact the Dolman Theatre on 01633 263670."

http://www.dolmantheatre.co.uk/show.aspx?id=298

There is also a Facebook event for the play: https://www.facebook.com/events/1232819446770130/

About the Playgoers Society, who have been performing plays since 1924:
http://www.dolmantheatre.co.uk/newport-playgoers-society.aspx

5.7 NEW: TAMAHER IN LEEDS (NOVEMBER)

Leeds Children's Theatre, "a voluntary drama society, producing quality drama for children of all ages since 1935", are presenting their production of The Amazing Maurice and his Educated Rodents in November!

When: 16th–19th November 2016
Venue: Carriageworks Theatre, The Electric Press, 3 Millennium Square, Leeds, LS2 3AD
Time: 7pm (16th–18th), noon and 5pm on Saturday 19th
Tickets: £11 (£10 concessions), Family (2+2) £40. There is an early bird £1 reduction "if booked before 23 October 2016 (n/a to our coach inclusive deals)" Tickets are available for purchase in person at the City Centre Box Office, Leeds Town Hall LS1 3AD from 10am – 6pm Monday to Saturday – telephone (0113) 376 0318; email boxoffice@leeds.gov.uk – also, an event Box Office will be open on the ground floor of the Carriageworks Theatre from 1 hour before show start time. To purchase tickets online, go to http://www.amazingmaurice.info/tickets.html

http://www.amazingmaurice.info/

5.8 NEW: MORT IN HARROGATE (NOVEMBER/DECEMBER)

The Woodlands Drama Group will be staging their production of Mort in November and December!

When: 30th November–3rd December 3 2016
Venue: The Studio At Harrogate Theatre, 6 Oxford Street, Harrogate HG1 1QF (email: boxoffice@harrogatetheatre.co.uk)
Time: 7.45pm evening shows; 2.30pm Saturday matinee
Tickets: all tickets £10, available from http://www.woodlandsdramagroup.co.uk/tickets/ or http://bit.ly/2di6RSA or by phoning the theatre's Box Office (01423 502116)

http://www.harrogatetheatre.co.uk/whats-on/Mort-Presented-by-Woodlands-Drama-Group

5.9 NEW: CARPE JUGULUM IN NOTTINGHAM (MARCH 2017)

The Lace Market Youth Theatre present Carpe Jugulum, "a pastiche of vampire literature playing with mythic archetypes and featuring a tongue in cheek reversal of 'vampyre' subculture with young vampires who wear bright clothes, drink wine and stay up till noon", in March 2017.

When: 22nd–25th March 2017
Venue: The Lace Market Theatre, Halifax Place, Nottingham NG1 1QN
Time: 7.30pm all evening shows; 2.30pm Saturday 25th matinee
Tickets: £11 (£10 concessions), available online at http://bit.ly/2dIKhod or by phoning 0115 950 7201

https://lacemarkettheatre.co.uk/LaceMarketTheatre.dll/WhatsOn

5.10 REMINDER: FEET OF CLAY IN ADELAIDE, FOURECKS (OCTOBER/NOVEMBER)

Adelaide's famous Unseen Theatre will be staging Feet of Clay as their next Pratchett production!

"It's Murder in Discworld!—which ordinarily is no big deal. But what bothers Commander Samuel Vimes, Head of the Ankh-Morpork City Watch, is that the unusual deaths of three harmless old men do not bear the clean, efficient marks of the Assassins' Guild. But that's only the start… someone is slowly poisoning the Patrician. No one knows who, no one knows why and, worst of all no one knows how – he just gets weaker and weaker. Added to that, the City Watch has got problems of its own. There's a werewolf suffering from Pre-Lunar Tension, Corporal Nobbs is hobnobbing with the nobs, and there's something really strange about the new dwarf recruit – especially his earrings and eyeshadow. Who can you trust when there are mobs on the streets, plotters in the dark and all the clues point the wrong way? Nevertheless, Sam Vimes has got to find out not only whodunit, but howdunit too. He's not even sure what they dun. But soon as he knows what the questions are, he's going to want some answers. We don't want to give anything away, but Vimes may find that the truth is not out there at all. In fact, it may be inside – but inside what? or should we say whom?"

When: 21st October–5th November 2016 (preview Friday 21st October; opening night 22nd October 22; then season continues Wed.–Sat. to 5th November)
Venue: Bakehouse Theatre, 255 AngasStreet, Adelaide
Time: 7.30pm all shows
Tickets: Adults $22; Concession $18; Groups (6+) $16; TRev $16; Preview $15, available online at http://bakehousetheatre.com/shows/feet-clay

http://unseen.com.au/

5.11 REMINDER: WYRD SISTERS IN EAST GRINSTEAD (OCTOBER)

The Ace Theatre Company will stage Wyrd Sisters in October. They have put an extra measure of their hearts into this production!

When: 20th – 22nd October 2016
Venue: Chequer Mead Theatre, De La Warr Road, East Grinstead, West Sussex RH19 3BS
Time: all evening shows 7.30pm; matinee on Saturday 22nd, 2.30pm
Tickets: evening shows £13 (£11 concessions); Saturday matinee £11 (£9 concessions), available from the Box Office by phoning 01342 302000, by email to tickets@chequermead.org.uk, or online at http://www.chequermead.org.uk/whats-on/theatre/event/?e=364967&cat= (click on the desired date button to purchase)

http://www.chequermead.org.uk/

5.12 REMINDER: GUARDS! GUARDS! IN BRISBANE (OCTOBER/NOVEMBER)

The Brisbane Arts Theatre takes on yet another Discworld play later this year, in October and November: "From the legendary author Sir Terry Pratchett comes the eighth novel in the Discworld series and first featuring the Ankh-Morpork City Watch. Long believed extinct, a superb specimen, The Noble Dragon has appeared in Discworld's greatest city. Not only does this unwelcome visitor have a nasty habit of charbroiling everything in its path, in rather short order it is crowned King (it is a noble dragon, after all). With some help from an orangutan librarian, it is the task of the Night Watch to overpower the secret brotherhood and restore order to the kingdom in this fantastical Discworld adventure."

When: 8th October through 12th November 2016
Venue: Brisbane Arts Theatre, 210 Petrie Terrace, Brisbane, QLD 4000
Time: 8pm Thursdays, Fridays & Saturdays (except 10th November); 6.30pm Sundays (16th & 30th October)
Tickets: Adults $31, Concession $25, Group 10+ $25, Group 75+ $20, Student Rush $10(10 mins before curtain), available online at http://bit.ly/1QGbXBF

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

5.13 REMINDER: MORT IN THE LAND OF FOG (NOVEMBER)

Paeroa Little Theatre's major production for 2016 will be Mort. Stay tuned for updates, as there is still no information available for times and tickets...

When: 9th–18th November 2016
Venue: Paeroa Little Theatre, 1 Francis Street, Paeroa 3600, th North Island, Land of Fog, er, New Zealand
Time: TBA
Tickets: TBA

http://www.facebook.com/PaeroaLittleTheatre/

5.14 VAGUELY NEW-ISH: WYRD SISTERS IN BOLTON, LANCS (MARCH 2017)

Bolton Little Theatre, "a vibrant amateur theatre company run by members" since 1931, will be staging their production of Wyrd Sisters next March.

When: 6th–11th March 2017
Venue: Bolton Little Theatre, Hanover Street, Bolton BL1 4TG
Time: 7.30pm
Tickets: £10 (Monday night 3 for 2 special), available at boltonlittletheatre.ticketsource.co.uk – group bookings of 10+ (£9) should be booked through the Box Office. “You can book at Bolton Little Theatre box office in person or by telephone on Monday night from 7.30 to 9pm and Friday mornings from 10.30 to 12 noon – no extra charge if paying by cash or cheque and you can book during the run of the plays or you can book online at boltonlittletheatre.ticketsource.co.uk ...credit card charges will apply. Tickets can be e-tickets (no charge) mobile phone ticket (50p) standard post (£1.50).”

http://www.boltonlittletheatre.co.uk/terry-pratchetts-wyrd-sisters/

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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"), meets next on Monday 3rd October 2016 at the Monkey Puzzle, 30 Southwick Street, London, W2 1JQ. There will also be an afternoon meetup on Saturday 22nd October 2016.

The most recent meet report sounds fun!

"We met Monday night. We had several new people come along: Jeroen, who lives in London and Richard and Andrea, two Americans who were on holiday in Britain. We also had Cecilia, who has been once before, a long time ago. She brought a bag of Convention goodies and handed them out. We got a Band with Rocks In rock. Left over were two drumsticks which we decided to leave at the pub along with our Broken Drum mascot. Thanks to Cecilia for bringing all that stuff along. Sim appeared sporting a new triple man-bun hairstyle. This sparked some semantic debate over whether it was possible for a woman to have a man-bun. Sim was very insistent that a man-bun is a distinct style rather than a bun worn by a man. She later demonstrated how it is done.

"Chris came and brought his quiz along. When he won a quiz all those months ago, others feared it would be too hard. He promised that his quiz would be multiple-choice. A couple of days before the event, he posted on Facebook that he did not say it would be easy. It turned out to be a based on Pointless. There were a number of possible answers to each question (note this is not what is usually meant by "multiple-choice") and the more people who gave the same answer, the higher the score. Failure to give a valid answer resulted in the maximum score and there were trick questions designed to invoke this. The person with the least points at the end was the winner. That person was me. There were some Discworld questions but topics ranged from the Famous Five to tectonic plates. Chris also gave us the chance to lose points with bonus questions. I was amused by the group's horror at a sports question. The laughably easy task of naming a country that has won the FIFA World Cup ever was treated as objectionable. The bonus question was to name the winner that was not a country. Many claimed not to understand the question. Alex G. (having the advantage of a politics degree) pointed out that there were members of FIFA who are not technically countries. Chris confirmed that this was the solution. Many people failed to work out the answer. And if you're now asking what it was, I'm not going to enlighten you. I fear we are only reinforcing stereotypes about geeks! Anyway, I won a box of Convention colouring pencils and a picture to colour in because according to Chris, 'Multiple-choice quizzes are for children'. I will sort out a quiz for next time and I promise it will not be all that difficult. It will certainly lack Chris' fiendish innovations."

(sent in by Mss C. The link is https://www.facebook.com/groups/55107511411/permalink/10154735030556412/ but you have to be signed in to Facebook to read it – Ed.)

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: "We are a newly established Terry Pratchett & Discworld social group in Canberra called 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 all 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 on Terry's latest, craft, chain maille or costuming workshops or other fun social activities."

The next Monthly Dinner and Games at the Caledonian Hotel will be held on 24th November 2016. Before that, there will be a Games Day at La Scala Cafe Unley (9th October), a group outing to see Unseen Theatre's production of Feet of Clay (opens 21st October), and the Quiz Long and Prosper - Science Fiction and Fantasy Quiz Night (12th November). For more info, go to www.cityofsmallgods.org.au

*

The Broken Vectis Drummers meet next on Thursday 6th October 2016 (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 7th October 2016 (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 but is now looking to take in some new blood (presumably not in the non-reformed Uberwald manner). 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 3rd October 2016 at 6.30pm (probably) 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 3rd October 2016 (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) ALZHEIMER'S NEWS

A possible step forward:

"A drug that destroys the characteristic protein plaques that build up in the brains of patients with Alzheimer's is showing 'tantalising' promise, scientists say. Experts are cautious because the drug, aducanumab, is still in the early stages of development. But a study in Nature has shown it is safe and hinted that it halts memory decline. Larger studies are now under way to fully evaluate the drug's effects... The next phase of research – phase 3 – involves two separate studies. These are recruiting 2,700 patients with very early stage Alzheimer's across North America, Europe and Asia in order to fully test the drug's effect on cognitive decline. Dr Alfred Sandrock of the biotech company Biogen, which worked with the University of Zurich on the research, said: 'Phase 3 really needs to be done and I hope it will confirm what we have seen in this study. One day I could envisage treating people who have no symptoms because if you have amyloid in the brain it's likely you'll develop Alzheimer's one day.' However, there have been many disappointments in Alzheimer's drug development, and it is over a decade since the last drug for people with the condition was licensed..."

http://www.bbc.com/news/health-37222863

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08) DISCWORLD ARTS AND CRAFTS NEWS

8.1 DISCWORLD EMPORIUM NEWS

* The Greebo Plushy

"Introducing 'Nanny's little softy', here to terrorize your stuffed toys and have you scream 'gerroffyerbugger!!!' This official Greebo Plush from Terry Pratchett's Discworld is the most adorable bundle of claws, battle scars and gnarled ears you'll ever own – just don't leave him alone with Fluffy or Mittens!" Measures approx 200mm high

Priced at £15. For more information, and to order, go to http://www.discworldemporium.com/terry-pratchett-discworld-greebo-plush

[For the record, I am only reluctantly promoting this; while I find the concept wonderful, I think the execution is barely above deplorable – and I say that as a collector and kinda-connoisseuse of cuddly animal toys. My own recommendation? The Librarian Plushy, a much better rendering of concept and priced at the same £15. For more information, and to order, go to http://www.discworldemporium.com/discworld-plush-librarian – Ed.]

* The Perennial Terry Pratchett Diary

"To celebrate the life and works of the remarkable Sir Terry Pratchett, the 2017 Discworld Diary has become a perennial publication, packed full of quotes, witticisms and illustrations along with tributes from some of those who knew and loved him and his extraordinary body of work. Contributors include Neil Gaiman, A S Byatt, Terry Pratchett's literary agent Colin Smythe, Emporium founder Bernard Pearson, co-author of the Long Earth books Stephen Baxter, and many more. Includes an introduction from his daughter Rhianna Pratchett and an afterword from longtime friend, assistant and business manager Rob Wilkins. Of course the Terry Pratchett Diary teems with all the important Discworld and Roundworld dates to help keep him with you as you go about your day – 'mind how you go'!

"We're proud to have worked with publishers Orion on the creation of this book, and as a further celebration of the great man every copy includes a sumptuous A5 art print of Sir Terry Pratchett's Coat of Arms, exclusive to the Discworld Emporium!

Each Terry Pratchett Diary with free art print is priced at £16.99 plus shipping (£3.50 UK, £7 Europe, £10 rest of the world) and will be published on 13th October 2016. For more information, and to pre-order, go to http://www.discworldemporium.com/new-terry-pratchett-books/terry-pratchett-discworld-diary

* New stamps

Plenty of these, including the Alchemists' Guild 3p and the Guild's Going for Gold LBE. A single stamp is 60p (£0.60), and a sheet of 19 stamps is £11.40. The Going for Gold LBE, which includes an Alchemists' Guild 3p stamp and a selection of other current stamps, is priced at £5. For more information, and to order, go to

http://www.discworldemporium.com/new%20stamps/alchemists-guild-three-pence

http://www.discworldemporium.com/new%20stamps/going-for-gold-lbe

A larger selection of available stamps can be found at http://www.discworldemporium.com/new%20stamps

8.2 DISCWORLD.COM NEWS

* Discworld trading cards!

"You may have noticed the small pieces of artwork that mysteriously began arriving with Discworld.com orders this month. Well, we're excited to confirm that there are twelve different designs and every time you order from us, one will be randomly selected to include with your goodies. All feature artwork from renowned Discworld artist Paul Kidby. And to answer the most frequent question we get asked - YES, you can now buy individual cards to fill in the gaps in your collection! The current Summer 2016 range is now available for purchase on Discworld.com."

The trading cards comprise a fascinating selection, all featuring the exquisite artwork of Paul Kidby: Granny Weatherwax, Carrot Ironfoundersson, Mr Ixolite, the Librarian (saluting), Ponder Stibbons, BS Johnson's Pie Cooler, Horace Worblehat (pre-transformation), the Tower of Art, Mr Slant, the Eater of Socks, 71-hour Achmed, and Leonard da Quirm (painting the Disc)

The cards are priced at £1 each, with the exception of the special DWcon 2016 card which is priced at £2 (see below). A full set of cards is priced at £12 and for a limited time includes the DWcon special card. For more information, and to order, go to http://discworld.com/products/trading-cards/ which contains links to individual cards for purchase. To buy the full set, go to:

http://discworld.com/products/trading-cards/trading-cards-series-one-including-shiny-convention-card/

...and the special Convention card, aka DWC2016 – The Empty Chord – foiled trading card: "Released to celebrate the 2016 UK Discworld Convention – this foiled trading card features Paul Kidby's artwork, set against a foiled sky."

http://discworld.com/products/limited-time-only/dwc2016-empty-chord-foiled/

* The Librarian and Greebo mugs!

"The very first pencil print released was the Librarian, a perennial favourite with readers. This classic illustration is now available as a mug for the very first time."

Each Librarian mug is priced at £8. For more information, and to order, go to:

http://discworld.com/products/convention-launches/librarian-mug/

"The second in a series of prints released back in 1995, this pencil image of Greebo is now available in all it's[sic] glory as a mug."

Each Greebo mug is priced at £8. For more information, and to order, go to:

http://discworld.com/products/convention-launches/greebo-pencil-mug/

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09) AROUND THE BLOGOSPHERE: THE TRUTH AND TAMAHER

The Truth, by Nat Wassell on Cultured Vultures:

"‘The Truth' revolves around the efforts of small time reporter William de Worde, writer of a monthly newsletter with a limited circulation, who accidentally falls in with a group of dwarves who have perfected the printing press. Before long, not only does William have a newspaper to run and a newspaper rival to see off, he also finds himself in the middle of a plot to overthrow Lord Vetinari and the reluctant middle man for a ‘translator' who claims he has got the full story from Vetinari's dog, Wuffles. It sounds complicated but as you may remember, my appetite for Sir Terry's complicated storylines is very limited so I can assure you that this one is almost as simple as any he ever did. It helps that it is packed with characters we know and love, alongside the new; Vimes, the Watch and Lord Vetinari rub shoulders with William, his right hand dwarf Goodmountain, the irrepressible roving reporter Sacharissa and Otto, the vampire photographer who has sworn off blood and just wants to focus on his pictures. As with all Sir Terry's novels, it helps immensely that all of the new characters are very likeable and relatable, too.

"William is probably the cleverest Discworld character I have come across, aside from Leonard of Quirm and the Patrician himself. There are few who match wits with Lord Vetinari and Sam Vimes and come out not only unscathed but almost on top. William is a highly educated second son, determined to make his own way in the world that his father so despises, and he does that by watching, listening and always being ready to learn more. Some Discworld characters, by the very nature of the fantasy, are probably certifiably insane, but William, although he does have some quirks, is one of the most normal Sir Terry created... One of my favourite things about this novel was a chance to see some of our best loved characters in a different light. Until now, we have only really seen Vetinari and Vimes through the prism of the Watch novels, which give us an idea of how their own men view them, but little by way of public image. They are public figures, of course, and the eyes of ordinary people tell us a lot about them..."

http://culturedvultures.com/discworld-discussions-truth-2000/

The Amazing Maurice and his Educated Rodents, by Ryan on Hubward Ho:

"This is an unusual book in the annals of Discworld, and not only because it is the first 'children's' book. It has a certain odd quality that I enjoy deeply but struggle to put into words. It's a struggle I've had before in amplified form when reading the Tiffany books. The dynamics and themes here are—I hesitate to say it—simpler? I've heard this book called 'simple' in more than one review, but that doesn't seem right to me. Tiffany's stories, and to a lesser extent Maurice, feel somehow sharper, more distilled, stripped down to something that feels true in the pit of my stomach... It's a gentle sensation in Maurice, and more like a river bursting a dam in the Tiffany books, but it's there in both: the cartilage of fantasy has worn down, and we're hard up against the bones of reality. Big themes, sharp shadows, no pretence...

"For me, the obfuscation of fundamental Discworld elements allows the story to exist in a kind of purely local geography, where cosmology and astrophysics are not even passing concerns. This is an unabashedly provincial book. This feels important to me, as the directness of the morality could seem like pontificating except for these subtle little ways that Pratchett redraws the world and redefines what about it is meaningful. By making mighty people, places, and ideas of Discworld small, Maurice makes room for the little people to be big. In a sense, Maurice begs a question I didn't know I wanted to ask, which is, 'What, really, makes Discworld?' How much of the world can you strip away before it becomes something, somewhere, sometime else? Is this what Discworld is, the closer you get to the bone?..."

http://bit.ly/2dwejgf

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10) IMAGES OF THE MONTH

Fourecksian actor Mike Shaw as Sam Vimes in Unseen Theatre's forthcoming production of Feet of Clay (photo courtesy of director Pamela Munt):
http://bit.ly/2dvuZV2

The full (and very large) cast of Monstrous Productions' presentation of Going Postal, with director Amy Davies front and centre:
http://bit.ly/2cWwL19

Paul Kidby's finished prize drawing – colouring in his own lines!
https://pbs.twimg.com/media/CrbJEh1WcAAgbHL.jpg

...and the man himself, looking rightly pleased with his efforts:
https://pbs.twimg.com/media/CtBud0SXYAEZRwL.jpg

A Kirby centrefold! The Witches, as seen in A Blink of the Screen:
http://bit.ly/2djifkc

Apparently this is a cake. Holy moley! (link from the Josh Kirby estate Twitter account):
https://pbs.twimg.com/media/CtR_KfkWIAA-PRP.jpg

A couple of nineteenth-century toffs at the Dodger launch. You may recognise them (iconograph rediscovered by Stephen Briggs):
https://pbs.twimg.com/media/CseRC3JWEAAZcuq.jpg

The broken drum of the Broken Drummers, London's legendary Pratchett fangroup, as posted on the @BrokenDrummers Twitter account:
https://pbs.twimg.com/media/Crmz7s4WAAACYJ2.jpg

Rincewind and the Luggage, by the super-talented Amy Simmonds:
https://t.co/SvXQ8NFFqf

...and another Amy Simmonds winner, Carrot and Angua:
https://pbs.twimg.com/media/CsVAhOjWAAAUHja.jpg

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11) CLOSE

And that's the lot for September, since September is now receding into the middle distance. We'll be back soon with more reviews, news and updates. Take care, and enjoy your autumn nights – or, in Fourecks and the Land of Fog, your spring mornings...

See you next month!

– Annie Mac

ooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooo

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

Copyright (c) 2016 by Klatchian Foreign Legion
wossname: (Plays)
Remember, the Ace Theatre Company will be staging their production of Wyrd Sisters in October!

When: 20th – 22nd October 2016
Venue: Chequer Mead Theatre, De La Warr Road, East Grinstead, West Sussex RH19 3BS
Time: all evening shows 7.30pm; matinee on Saturday 22nd, 2.30pm
Tickets: evening shows £13 (£11 concessions); Saturday matinee £11 (£9 concessions), available from the Box Office by phoning 01342 302000, by email to tickets@chequermead.org.uk, or online at http://www.chequermead.org.uk/whats-on/theatre/event/?e=364967&cat= (click on the desired date button to purchase)

http://www.chequermead.org.uk/

Here be their poster:



And here be some cast photos from rehearsals, including a fine trio of witches:








wossname: (GNU Terry Pratchett)
Wossname
Newsletter of the Klatchian Foreign Legion
September 2015 (Volume 18, Issue 9, Post 2)

********************************************************************
WOSSNAME is a free publication offering news, reviews, and all the other stuff-that-fits pertaining to the works and activities 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, Wolfiekins, 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) MORE QUOTES OF THE MONTH
02) EDITOR'S LETTER: ABOUT LITERATURE AND "LITERATURE"
03) THE SIR TERRY PRATCHETT MEMORIAL SCHOLARSHIP
04) THE SHEPHERD'S CROWN: REVIEWS
05) THE SHEPHERD'S CROWN: FAN TRIBUTES
06) MORE ODDS AND SODS
07) DISCWORLD MEETING GROUPS NEWS (UPDATE)
08) THE SHEPHERD'S CROWN: THE WOSSNAME REVIEW
09) MORE IMAGES OF THE MONTH
10) CLOSE

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01) MORE QUOTES OF THE MONTH

"The Shepherd's Crown and all the Tiffany Aching adventures are a New York Times bestselling series. Fabulous news!"
  – @terryandrob, 10th September 2015

"I fancy a memorial scholarship in my name. Speak to David Lloyd and make it so."
  – Sir Terry Pratchett, in his final to-be-opened-after-death letter to Rob Wilkins

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02) LETTER FROM YOUR EDITOR

  Most Pratchett fans will be aware of the stir that ensued a few weeks ago when an arts critic for The Guardian newspaper savaged and dismissed the works of Terry Pratchett without having read them. Apart from showing rank unprofessionalism by critiquing a body of work without reading any of it first, the piece was a sad display of the kind of egregious literary snobbery – "all genre novels are bad because only impenetrable and tortuously-written novels about Serious Subjects(TM) can possibly be good" – that gives big-L Literature a bad name among the multitude who read for pleasure. Or in simpler words, said critic was a self-important twit pitching to an audience of self-important gits.

  And yet... and yet...

  ...what this critic did was a good thing, because he brought the spotlight back onto the literature-versus-Literature debate and placed that light squarely on the works of an author who wrote a vast series of high literary quality – in the fantasy genre.

  Look at any list of so-called greatest novels in the English language and you find a plethora of of "worthy" writing: books built on themes rather than on stories, books that take the inward eye to boring extremes, books that may have been significant in their original era and then failed to age gracefully but remain on the "greatest" lists due to the power of memes and traditions. The predictable inclusion of Moby-Dick, of the novels of Austen and Joyce, of writers whose entire oeuvre celebrates the repellent lives of personal or societal failures in ways that are more misery-inducing than uplifting (coughBukowskicoughMcCarthycough)... of course these have their place, and some of them are even well-written, but to deny beautifully-crafted literature an uppercase L simply because it belongs to a less mainstream field is an insult to good writing.

  Great literature, in my unapologetic opinion, needs to contain both superb wordcraft and emotionally-involving subject matter, plus what I would call "flow of story". Many of the books that find their way to those "greatest" lists lack one or more of these qualities – again, this is my own arrogantly unapologetic opinion, but for the record, yes, I *have* read the bulk of them so I am speaking from a base of evidence. Many of the novels of "genre author" Stephen King have all three in abundance. Most of the novels of Terry Pratchett have all three in abundance *plus* an undercurrent of moral and social observation that raises them to the highest level of big-L Literature.

  I would also include, in the category of great and enduring literature, stories that are so filled with life and flow that they transcend their time, for example the novels of Robert Louis Stevenson. But sometimes a cracking story is not nearly enough, and for an illustration of that we can look to the myriad bestselling novels of Michael Crichton: cracking stories, yes, but Crichton's wordcraft is simply wooden and his inability to create characters that were more than one-dimensional ciphers suffused his entire body of work; so no, Crichton is very likely to be read several generations down the line. (Crichton was also, if you want to get technical, possibly the most successful genre author in the history of popular publishing – hellooo, the plots and subject matter of most of his work are science fiction – but for some reason his books were never filed in the SF and Fantasy section. Go figure.)

  Confession time: I got over PG Wodehouse a long time ago. Once upon a time I loved his books, but by the time I'd come back for a third re-read I realised that the scope of them was too narrow, the stories too formulaic, to retain their sparkle for me – and that there were quite simply too many of them cut from the same cloth with little to relieve their sameness. It used to bother me that Pratchett was compared, in the early days of his career, to Wodehouse as if this were conferring a great honour upon a novice author. I suppose The Colour of Magic had a certain Wodehouse-like playfulness to it, but Pratchett's writing rapidly transcended those narrow confines. Wodehouse wrote well, but he wrote only about the madcap stupidities of the uppercrust of one place and era. Pratchett wrote about vampires and werewolves, golems and trolls, dwarfs and pictsies, but what he was really writing about was the human condition – and books about the human condition are as Literature as you can get.

  And now, on with the show...

– Annie Mac, Editor

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03) THE SIR TERRY PRATCHETT MEMORIAL SCHOLARSHIP

The University of South Australia's media release:

  "Marking his passion for lifelong learning, curiosity and exploration, the estate of the late Sir Terry Pratchett has announced the endowment of a unique scholarship at the University of South Australia to honour the memory of the best-selling author. The Sir Terry Pratchett Memorial Scholarship will be awarded by the University of South Australia in perpetuity, every two years and will support a student to undertake a Masters by research at UniSA's Hawke Research Institute, covering stipend, travel and accommodation expenses as well as research costs. The $100,000 scholarship will additionally provide an extraordinary opportunity for students to conduct their research both at UniSA and at Trinity College Dublin, in Ireland for up to a full year in the course of their two-year's study...

  "UniSA Vice Chancellor Professor David Lloyd says that the University is humbled by the generosity of the scholarship. 'This extraordinary gift is the largest student scholarship of its kind in the history of the University,' Prof Lloyd says. 'Terry was someone who was never shy of contributing to the things he believed in and as recipients of this wonderful bequest we are reminded of his commitment to inquiry and to learning. The fact that this is a perpetual scholarship means that, like Terry's books, this gift will endure for generations to come. The scholarship will support worthy students to complete cultural research relevant to, or inspired by Terry's work and linked to the Hawke Research Institute's theme of identity transformations. That opens a vast field for creative and sharp minds – anything from the study of satire and its impact on societal identities right through to the impact of information and communications technology (ICT) in society. Whatever the research proposal in this field, we want to see topics that consider social impacts and investigate tangible benefits to society – it's an exciting challenge and one that we think Terry would have loved.'

  "The collaborative scholarship builds on a growing relationship between two very different universities in two hemispheres, who share links both through research and their strong associations with Sir Terry Pratchett and is underpinned by an MOU between Trinity College Dublin's Trinity Long Room Hub and UniSA's Hawke Research Institute.

  "Dean of Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences at Trinity College Dublin, Prof Darryl Jones, says the School of English at Trinity was honoured to have Sir Terry Pratchett as an Adjunct Professor. 'His wit, his warmth, his intelligence and above all else, his humanity made him an unforgettable friend and colleague,' Prof Jones says. 'We miss him dearly, and we're delighted to be part of this joint endeavour with the University of South Australia. The Sir Terry Pratchett Memorial Scholarship is a fitting tribute to a wonderful writer and a remarkable man.'..."

http://bit.ly/1VkFLH7

In Indaily:

  "The $100,000 biannual scholarship will support a student studying a Masters by research at UniSA's Hawke Research Institute. In addition, scholarship holders will be given the opportunity to study at Trinity College Dublin, in Ireland, for up to a year during their two years of study. The estate of the late, and much loved, author announced the endowment of the Sir Terry Pratchett Memorial Scholarship in Adelaide today. UniSA Vice Chancellor Professor David Lloyd said the perpetual scholarship, like Pratchett's books, was a gift that would endure for generations. 'This extraordinary gift is the largest student scholarship of its kind in the history of the university,' Lloyd said. 'Terry was someone who was never shy of contributing to the things he believed in and as recipients of this wonderful bequest we are reminded of his commitment to inquiry and to learning.'

  "He said the scholarship would support students to complete cultural research relevant to, or inspired by Pratchett's work, and linked to the Hawke institute's theme of identity transformations. 'That opens a vast field for creative and sharp minds – anything from the study of satire and its impact on societal identities right through to the impact of information and communications technology in society...'""

http://bit.ly/1KZuQBf

In The Australian:

  "In an envelope sealed until after his death in March, best-selling British author Terry Pratchett kept a $1 million secret, honouring a great friendship, a love of science fiction and his respect for higher education. Half a world away, the University of South Australia will now benefit from Pratchett's generosity in perpetuity, thanks to his close relationship with vice-chancellor David Lloyd. 'Last time we saw Terry, we went to his house in the UK last year and the kids were out feeding the sheep,' Professor Lloyd said. 'The next day he gave a letter to (manager) Rob Wilkins and in the letter he said he wanted to give this to the university. It was only opened on his birthday in April this year,' Professor Lloyd told The Australian... It is the largest endowment the university has received...

  "Professor Lloyd first met Pratchett when he recommended his favourite author for an honorary doctorate while working at Trinity in 2008. Pratchett had been diagnosed with Alzheimer's disease a year earlier, but Professor Lloyd said he remained intellectually sharp and gave regular guest lectures until his death from pneumonia. When Pratchett would lecture at Trinity, he would visit Professor Lloyd and his wife for dinner. He went to family birthdays, and they would discuss literature. 'He was just Terry to us,' Professor Lloyd said. 'My children knew he was Sir Terry and they thought he would have a sword.'"

http://bit.ly/1QHTpmq

And some iconographs...

The sandwich board announcement:
https://pbs.twimg.com/media/CP8ucRyWcAAQT98.jpg

David Lloyd and Rob Wilkins holding a replica Bank of Ankh-Morpork cheque signed to the university for $1,082,753.00:
https://pbs.twimg.com/media/CP8-UspWcAAhzp_.jpg

Rob delivering the announcement:
https://pbs.twimg.com/media/CP86Lt6VAAAUwRX.jpg

And there's even some video! This is a four-minute selection of bits from the formal announcement, featuring David Lloyd, Rob Wilkins... and The Hat!

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mE4coOWdeKI&feature=youtu.be

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04) THE SHEPHERD'S CROWN REVIEWS

BE WARNED!!! IN LARGE, UNFRIENDLY LETTERS!!! WITH MULTIPLE EXCLAMATION MARKS!!!! HERE BE SPOILERS!!! NOT IN THE QUOTED EXTRACTS, BUT DEFINITELY IN THE REVIEWS THOSE EXTRACTS CAME FROM. IF YOU HAVEN'T READ THE SHEPHERD'S CROWN YET AND DON'T WISH TO READ SPOILERS, *DO* *NOT* *CLICK* ON THE ACCOMPANYING LINKS!!!! INSTEAD, GO TO ITEM 7, BELOW, FOR THE ONLY REVIEW OF THE SHEPHERD'S CROWN GUARANTEED TO BE FREE OF ANY SPOILERS WHATSOEVER – Ed.

By David G. Lloyd, Arch-Chancellor, I mean, Vice-Chancellor and President at University of South Australia and admiring friend of Sir Terry Pratchett, on The Conversation:

  "I knew and counted Terry among my friends since 2008, and I watched Alzheimer's slowly and insidiously strip him of attributes and faculty over that time. The 41st and final Discworld novel – published five months after its author's death – wasn't something I ever wanted to face. But I am glad I did. It's a joy to read. Terry knew in 2014 that this was the likely curtain call for his time on the Disc. He was still incubating ideas for future books. He wasn't quite finished with Sam Vimes or the wizards of Unseen University – but he was a very clever and, above all, realistic man...

  "Shepherd's Crown wasn't an easy write for Terry. Rob Wilkins' afterword to the book hints both at that and that there was still more finishing to be done on this novel, had there only been more time. We can only wonder what that may have been... This is not a fantasy novel intended for 'younger readers' as it is wont to be pigeonholed... This is a book for all ages, the tour de force of one of the English language's greatest authors, who, in the midst of encroaching darkness and facing so many terrors of his own, has contrived to astound us one last time with his craft. Terry's razor-sharp insight to the human condition, through an unusually turtle-shaped lens remains strong. Pratchett liberally sprinkles his text with instructions to his readers – read books if you want to learn things, make choices when faced with them, stand your ground, don't tolerate the intolerable from others. Simple, yet sound advice for life..."

http://bit.ly/1Q3o79R

In The Telegraph by Kat Brown, who gives it five out of five stars:

  "This isn't just a great Discworld book, it's extraordinary; a proper send-off for Pratchett and this mammoth series. It is shot through with an elegiac tone, you have a sense of it being his own 'play's last scene'. If this wasn't intentional, it's a bloody good coincidence. Earlier themes and characters return for a last hurrah (impressively without once feeling like an episode of This is Your Life) anchored by one of Pratchett's most popular recent characters, young witch Tiffany Aching... Pratchett has never been a sentimental writer, but there is an expansiveness here that is new and reflective... Having spent the last 30 years raising an amused eyebrow at the quirks of human nature, Pratchett uses his final novel to examine the power of humanity... There is the potential for decency in all of us, he says. None of this is to say that Pratchett has gone soft. His trademark wisdom and seemingly bottomless knowledge remains sharp... As ever with this series, there is a delight to be had in knowing you will spot another intriguing reference when you read it again..."

http://bit.ly/1VqebrU

By Nicholas Tucker in The Independent:

  "The Shepherd's Crown, the 41st addition to his Discworld series, continues the story of young witch Tiffany Aching, first met four novels ago in The Wee Free Men. But this final work contains no bewildering flashbacks or anything else taken for granted in the Discworld cosmology. Sir Terry had a new tale to tell, and launches into it at top speed... There is no evidence that Sir Terry's degenerative illness affected the quality of this prose. Some scenes were written two years ago, given that he usually had more than one novel on the go. A few cliches of the 'foaming tankard' type get past, but this is still an author delighting in the fertility of his imagination..."

http://ind.pn/1X42TND

Also in The Independent, by David Barnett:

  "It's impossible to open the book without a sense of melancholia, and it feels like the author embarked upon the writing of it weighted with the same. He knew when he sat down to write it that it would be his last Discworld, his final book. As such, it's difficult to see The Shepherd's Crown as anything other than Sir Terry's farewell letter to his legion of fans – though of course, this being a Pratchett, it's pretty fine novel in its own right... This is essentially Tiffany's coming of age novel, of a young woman on the cusp of adulthood who has greatness thrust upon her... The Discworld series has outgrown its comic fantasy roots – despite the central conceit of a flat world balanced on four elephants on the back of a giant turtle swimming through space – to become astute observations on the human condition... The Shepherd's Crown is a sometimes sad, often funny and eminently suitable testament to the life and career of Terry Pratchett."

http://ind.pn/1JGbQqG

...and Christopher Stevens in the Daily Mail:

  "His publisher categorises these as books for 'young adults', but that's ridiculous because any teenager (or any 70-year-old, for that matter) could find fun in a Discworld book. The point about the Tiffany tales is that they are also suitable for much younger children. A bright seven-year-old could easily be engrossed, even if half the plot and most of the sly cultural references were too subtle for them to spot. Bookish children know they're skating over some of the literary layers but they don't care, as long as there's lots to enjoy. Terry, who was a bookish child all his life, understood that. These 'young witch' novels are also especially good for parents who want to read aloud to their children. I can attest to that: there's endless scope for over-acting and dreadful accents. Most entertaining for bedtime stories are Tiffany's tiny guardians, the brawling, drunken fairy folk called the Nac Mac Feegle. They curse and threaten and blather in a rollicking Glasgow dialect, like Billy Connolly fighting his way out of a vat of whisky, and such is Terry's skill with language that he never writes a word you'd be shocked to hear a child repeat... There's no condescension, however, no coyness about life's cruelties just because this is a children's book..."

http://dailym.ai/1KjoS9A

In the Christian Science Monitor, by Yvonne Zipp:

  "To open the final Terry Pratchett novel is an emotional thing. To close it is even harder. Many wonderful writers, from Neil Gaiman to A.S. Byatt, have expounded on Pratchett's brilliance, the righteous anger that powered the prolific writer, his unfailing sense of fairness. The man also wrote a beautiful footnote. Over 41 novels, he created a fantasy world rich enough for readers to steep in and wry and wise enough to come back for another dip... this is less of a review and more of a thank-you letter. Other folks can debate the relative literary merits of 'The Shepherd's Crown' – I was just grateful there was one more book..."

http://bit.ly/1NyCjtd

In The Guardian, by AS Byatt:

  "Tolkien's mystic and lordly elves have an ambivalent relationship with humans. Pratchett's are glamorous and nasty. They destroy things – washing, children – for the pleasure of it. As a child I knew that elves were nasty not nice, but also exciting. Neil Gaiman has famously said of Pratchett that he was not 'a jolly old elf' – he was angry. He wrote increasingly about worlds in which real harm happens and increasingly about real efforts to prevent it. In The Shepherd's Crown, which is part of a group of novels claiming to be for 'young adults', evil and anger still take the form of fairy story and myth. But the reader experiences them sharply...

  "I started to read Pratchett out of a need for other worlds as well as the one I lived in. I like the alien geography, the octarine colour, the magic that was tough and neither technical nor sentimental. I was happy enough with the clacks, a system of message towers cleverly rhyming with fax when we first knew faxes, a kind of telegraph in mountains and wildernesses. I used to argue with journalists who asked me if the Discworld was not all simply satire of our world and I would say, no, no, it is an imaginary world with its own ways..."

http://bit.ly/1IhYvj5

Also in The Guardian, by Amanda Craig:

  "Pratchett, with his sardonic inventiveness, social satire, play on language, deep feeling for landscape and love of what is best in human nature, had less critical praise than he deserved. His heroes and heroines are not royalty in disguise, but thieves, con-men, shepherds, soldiers and midwives. In his championing of the ordinary, the sensible and the slightly silly he went against the grain – and never more so than in creating Tiffany Aching... Of course [The Shepherd's Crown] is riotously funny, with the gloriously irrepressible Nac Mac Feegles having the best jokes and fights; as bright blue warriors otherwise known as the Wee Free Men they are shrunken but fearsome Scottish Nationalists; the Elves and their quarrels may well recall other politicians south of the border. The real battle, however, is between selfishness and duty. Pratchett has rarely been so direct. It's tempting to think that in this, his last book, he felt able to drop his customary teasing through footnotes and explain what empathy is... We are so used to the way George RR Martin or Joe Abercrombie or even Ursula le Guin show us fantasy worlds riven with cruelty, that perhaps the kindliness of Discworld is more subversive than it seems. It is, in essence, a humanist's creation in which laughter, as Nabokov said, is the best pesticide, and humour as potent as swords... This is not a perfect example of Pratchett's genius, but it is a moving one..."

http://bit.ly/1hMrs1T

By Michael Dirda in The Washington Post:

  "'The Shepherd's Crown' is certainly a worthy crown to Terry Pratchett's phenomenal artistic achievement, though sharp readers will recognize that some elements ... are never fully developed. Moreover, anyone expecting lots of laughs will need to revisit some of the other books set on Discworld. While the Nac Mac Feegle are consistently amusing, much of this novel concerns itself with death and life's purpose, while also examining the claims of tradition against the need for change and progress. Above all, though, 'The Shepherd's Crown' — like all of Pratchett's fiction — stresses the importance of helping others. Beyond this, I think that Pratchett's farewell advice would be to follow his witches' sensible principle: 'Just do the work you find in front of you and enjoy yourself.'..."

http://wapo.st/1Kn91gu

The Huffington Post's review, by David Kudler:

  "The characters were always the strong suit of Pratchett's novels — that and the wild humor. Throughout, we meet up of some of the most memorable characters from the previous forty Discworld novels, particularly the women — Eskarina Smith, Agnes Nitt, Queen Magrat, Nanny Ogg, and of course the indomitable Granny Weatherwax. In fact, Granny Weatherwax has what I found to be the most memorable scene in the book, a somber, quiet passage that set the tone for the whole novel... Most of Pratchett's writing was notable for its biting satire and wild humor. While there is definitely humor in The Shepherd's Crown, it feels very subdued. Nanny Ogg and the Nac Mac Feegle crack jokes, but there's a whistling-in-the-graveyard feel to them. Even the author's notoriously random footnotes feel more wistful than riotously funny..."

http://huff.to/1LECUU9

In the New Statesman, by Deputy Editor Helen Lewis:

  "Since March, I have been reading the few remaining Discworld books I never tackled during Pratchett's lifetime. I had never got round to reading his series about the junior witch Tiffany Aching. Shamefully, I think I saw 'young adult' and my inner dowager duchess reached for the smelling salts. That was my stupid mistake. The Aching books are some of Pratchett's best, and I fell so instantly in love that I had a passage from one of them at my wedding this summer. So The Shepherd's Crown was a double sadness: not just goodbye to Terry Pratchett, but goodbye to new adventures for Tiffany Aching, to Nanny Ogg, to Greebo the smelly, one-eyed tomcat and to Magrat, the drippy hippie queen who nevertheless shot an elf in the eye with a crossbow through a keyhole when her friends were in danger... And that is what I was really saying goodbye to, as I snuffled quietly to myself on the train, surrounded by strapping Danes on a day trip to the countryside. I'm never going to love another author like I loved Terry Pratchett..."

http://bit.ly/1F8vY4L

By Natalie Bowen, in the Lincolnshire Echo:

  "This is not the place to start exploring the series, as it is impossible to read without being familiar with the satirical world he created over 40 previous novels. Newcomers will be baffled by unexplained references to canonical events and apparently random characters given the barest introduction – and there are a lot of these cameos, a pleasing nod to fan favourites. Pratchett's last adult novel, Raising Steam, was criticised for lacking his typical biting wit, but this does not seem as obvious in young adult fiction, which has always had a gentler approach. Yes, some of the punchlines are predictable, but Pratchett's signature twists on real events still raise a smile..."

http://bit.ly/1glh1kf

On Den of Geek, by Juliette Harrison. WARNING!!! THIS REVIEW CALLS ITSELF "SPOILER-FILLED" AND YES, THEY REALLY MEAN IT!!! But here be a spoiler-free extract:

  "It was not entirely deliberate that The Shepherd's Crown is, as the back cover reminds us, the final Discworld novel. Rob Wilkins' Afterword offers a tantalising glimpse of the other stories that will never now be written down, and this novel is not an ending. The Discworld goes on and Tiffany Aching has a lot of future ahead of her. It may say 'The End' at the bottom of the last page, but this is not a story that has an end, just a point where we have left it to go and do other things. The story carries on, and while there will be no more Discworld novels, it will continue in other ways, in plays and (probably) screen versions, through games and cosplay events... But this is a Discworld book, and no matter how tragic and weighty they may be, there is always a light heart at the centre of any of these novels. And so it is with this one; the hilarious footnotes are present and correct as ever, and the references to everything from Shakespeare to Dad's Army to Margaret Thatcher will ensure that readers are smiling through their tears..."

http://bit.ly/1UQnaTc

Den of Geek also offers a "spoiler-free" review, also by Juliette Harrison:

  "The Shepherd's Crown is a funny, sad and extremely moving farewell to Terry Pratchett's Discworld novels... Reading this book first will, of course, spoil the endings of several other Discworld books, predominantly those featuring Tiffany Aching, but it has resonances reaching right back to the third book, Equal Rites, and forward to the fortieth, Raising Steam. But the story itself will make perfect sense and offer an enjoyable tale filled with pop culture references and people trying out new ways of thinking – and most importantly of all, it is funny as well as heart-breakingly sad. The Discworld is still, at its heart, comedy, even if tragedy has been seeping through its bones for a long time now... For a long-time Discworld reader, this is not a book that can easily be quantified as 'good' or 'not quite so good' (no Discworld novel is 'bad'). It is neither of those things. Like all Discworld novels, some will come to think of it as an all-time favourite, while others will consider it pretty good, even if it doesn't have the Watch in it. No one is likely to think of it as a weaker novel in the series, and most will likely consider it one of the strongest, and certainly one of the most – possibly the most – moving..."

http://bit.ly/1Khryo8

Charlie Jane Anders' review on i09:

  "The latest Discworld book, The Shepherd's Crown, doesn't just have the task of wrapping up the story of Tiffany Aching, trainee witch. It's also the very last Discworld book, since author Terry Pratchett sadly passed away earlier this year. The good news is, this is a solid ending to both stories... There's not much glory in the life of a witch, as Pratchett has imagined it, and the main enemies that Tiffany must battle against include pervasive sexism and idiocy. So the coming-of-age, hero's-progress story for Tiffany is as much a matter of accepting one's lot in life as it is rising to some kind of fantastic world-beating challenge. That said, The Shepherd's Crown is surprisingly upbeat, especially as compared to the somewhat darker previous Tiffany Aching book, I Shall Wear Midnight. This is very much the culmination of Tiffany's journey, and a major theme is that she's no longer a struggling young girl, but a fully-fledged witch who deserves, and demands, respect. And Tiffany's arrival as a proper, important witch in her own right, is balanced with a story about how Discworld has changed, and the nature of progress in general... The Shepherd's Crown is bittersweet for a number of reasons, including the fact that we'll never get any more Discworld books from Pratchett's pen...

  "As a final Discworld book, meanwhile, Shepherd's Crown presents a beautifully panoramic view of Discworld as a place in flux. Pratchett does a good job of giving cameos to a number of other great Discworld characters, without being too obtrusive, while also giving kind of an overview of how his world is moving into a new era of industrial progress... this is a beautiful ending to Tiffany Aching's story, with a blend of sadness and hopefulness that will stick with you long after you've closed the pages..."

http://bit.ly/1Qca8xG

By Villordsutch on Flickering Myth:

  "The Shepherd's Crown will be the Terry Pratchett book which will be known for both breaking your heart and mending it at exactly the same time. As a grown man I bear uncanny resemblance to a 6ft Viking and I don't think a book – which is technically classed as young adult fiction – has ever brought me to such an emotional state before. Just after the first fifty pages I needed to stop reading and resolve myself due to the sadness that had fallen upon the Discworld. This book of gender discrimination and equality, acceptance and humility, coping with loss, and the circle of life which has been all wrapped up in a YA fantasy setting has become a landmark in my mind; a true emotional marker that will never be forgotten..."

http://bit.ly/1Lt6cVI

By Gopal Sathe on Gadgets NDTV:

  "Pratchett's genius often lay in his asides, which were full of knowing glances and cheerful nudges to the brain, to make you think about things in completely different ways. And where Raising Steam seemed like it was in a hurry to tie up all the loose ends that had come up in Snuff, The Shepherd's Crown is a slower book that has been building up ever since Pratchett wrote The Wee Free Men in 2003. There are parts where The Shepherd's Crown still feels rushed, but it is an excellent work which feels much more like Pratchett than some of his other, recent books. It carries his trademark humour, with its blend of jollity and savagery. As is typically the case for his books, he takes a closer look at any kind of accepted truth, and goes on to upend our understanding of things. That he does so now with the characters and characterisations he himself had created in the past might not appeal to everyone. But that is not what this book is about..."

http://bit.ly/1K8Pz1v

By Tasha Robinson, for NPR:

  "The book is unmistakably a personal, meaningful, but no-fuss goodbye to the world. And significantly, it's largely about how life goes on for everyone else... A note at the end of the book explains that Pratchett did complete it, but didn't have time for the second passes he usually took to flesh out the story. That omission is obvious throughout The Shepherd's Crown: The writing is unusually blunt and artless in places, and there's an unevenness to the storytelling — some colorful side moments play out at rapturous length, while key action whisks by, and characters occasionally get lost in the blur. But Shepherd's Crown is still recognizably Pratchett, from the giggle-fit-inducing footnotes to the stern moral message about selflessness, empathy and caring for others..."

http://n.pr/1LUHnaZ

Cassandra Khaw's review on Ars Technica:

  "Terry Pratchett is ostensibly a voice of humorous fantasy. He made atheist golems, literary orangutans, a cowardly wizard who dealt with his role as a Hero by running away very, very quickly. But as Neil Gaiman observed in his introduction for A Slip of the Keyboard: Collected Non-fiction, Discworld's venerable creator was also often furious. His books snarled. They railed against today's storms, its innumerous injustices. Monstrous Regiment lampooned the pointlessness of war. Equal Rites shouted at sexism, Small Gods at the problem of blind faith, Carpe Jugulum the privileged's proclivity to demean those beneath them. In comparison, The Shepherd's Crown feels quieter and tauter, although no less fierce. It feels like an acknowledgement. No matter Pratchett's influence, there is only so much he could do, has done, can continue to do even as the effects of his writing ripple outwards. And he seems at peace with that..."

http://bit.ly/1KNavRz

A review by Lucy Sussex in the Sydney Morning Herald:

  "The Shepherd's Crown, his final book, belongs to a series aimed at young adults, centred on young witch Tiffany Aching. They were among his best, very English pastorals, with a strong sense of place. Here, Pratchett revisited earlier novels, drawing in characters as if tying up loose threads... Pratchett gave joy to millions of readers and his personal millions enriched good causes. The Shepherd's Crown is an uneven epitaph, but under the circumstances, a fitting one."

http://bit.ly/1OlefKB

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05) THE SHEPHERD'S CROWN: FAN TRIBUTES

Anna Mulch:
"Thank you Sir Terry for writing girls and women as heroes and well rounded characters. Thank you for not creating caricatures of women. You are more of a feminist than quite a few that I know, and what is great about it is that it wasn't overt, it wasn't anarchistic, it wasn't forced. You wrote the girls and women the way you did because that's how they were. Thank you."

Kereth Makura:
"I've just finished the Shepherd's Crown, and a sense of loss is upon me. Though I am thankful for my visits to a strange world that sat upon the backs of four elephants; that in turn stood atop a Turtle's shell. I am glad that I can always revisit such places, in the pages of a book. In my head – I have wandered the Streets of Ankh Morpork, I've seen the distant Ramtop Mountains, and Far Off Uberwald. I have travelled from Lancre to the deserts Djelibeybi across The Circle Sea, and have sat upon the Chalk and watched the "Ships," As occasionally I'd swore that I heard someone small, blue and unseen but often nearby give out the yell of "Crivens" I've met many strange folk upon my travels, The Good, The Bad and The Witchy. I've been drunk on Scumble and sang of Hedgehogs and Wizzard's Knobs, and even witnessed DEATH. . .And for these moments of joy, and many others...I thank you (Sir) Terry, and if there is a World beyond the Black Desert of Death's realm? I hope that you have found peace there. . ."

Jac Chamberlain:
"Finished the last book, would like to thank a great man for making me laugh, cry and most of all think!"

Chris Browne:
"Does it count as a spoiler if I say I did not find ANY trace of Embuggerance in the whole book? The Shepherd's Crown will stay in the Overhead forever I think."

Merredy Jackson:
"Having finished the last book, I intend to go back and re-read every witches book. I don't think of it as ending; I always pick up new things when I read Discworld. But I grieve for what is lost; Terry's brilliance, and the stories we will never hear. Young Sam growing up to be a Watchman, Moist's son trying to pull cons on his father, continuing adventures of Susan, the Wizards, and all the other characters I love so much."

Martine KB:
"Today I pay my homage. I open my bottle of wine and toast to a man that has been an enormous part of my life. On this day, the day his last story comes out into the world, I will drink to his greatness and his family. I will mourn his loss and will rejoice his life. His world has given me much more that he will ever know. He has been there in the good and the bad and he will continue to be there for ever more. The last of his series has come out today, the end of an era. I will read it, the moment it arrives at my door. After that, I will read it again and again, just like I did with all his books. They will stay with me, his characters will live inside my own imagination and have great adventures. They will live on in me and in all the people who have been touched by his works. Sir Terry Pratchett will never really die, for his name is spoken by all his readers and his fans. Tomorrow I will start spreading the word and tell people about his Discworld, the great A'Tuin riding through space, on his back 4 elephants that carry the disc, a world where everything is possible! Tomorrow I will spread the word, today I will remember."

Daniel Harrowven:
"Over the last few years when Terry's illness was getting worse I still loved the new publications but if I am completely honest I felt that the 'depth' of the plot and humour was slightly lacking compared to earlier works, but the books were still amazing and even more so considering what Terry was dealing with. This afternoon I have cried my eyes out (Danny, 37, skin head heavy metal fan) but also laughed louder than I have in years, The Shepard's[sic] Crown reads like a Discworld book from the 90's-early 2000's when Terry was at the peak of the fantasy/comedy scene. The comedy is razor sharp and the plot gripping and intense."

Maire Wilcox:
"I guess each of us is going to get something different from it and I was left with the realisation that Terry was making peace with himself and the world, He left us with a legacy to always look at the world from a different angle and to never lose sight of what's important which is different from personal. I'm going to be digesting this for a long time to come."

Jay Bolt:
"Terry, you weren't good. You were amazing. You can never begin to understand the impact you had on me or my family, never mind the wider Discworld community. I can never thank you enough for what I have personally gained from you and your work. I am ever in your debt."

Katy Rewston:
"I wish I had had the guts to write sir Terry a letter whilst I still had the chance, thanking him from the bottom of my soul for the Discworld books. They got me through the hell of school, and through times of deepest depression and weeks of insomnia because in the dark of night my mind just will not shut up. The audiobooks sooth me, and I find so much wisdom and comfort in them, and even now when i go through them after almost 15 years of reading the books and listening to the audiobooks I still find new wit and wisdom that i did not notice before. I would have thanked him for writing the most 'real' women I have ever encountered in books, in such a huge variety of ages and personalities. Susan for her no nonsense strength, Angua for just being so badass and Cheery for her bravery in the face of so much prejudice. His women are so real, so strong, and it helped me accept things about my own personality as i have so often felt out of place in the modern world.

"The witches made me think about how much I think about reality and other people, about nature and the complex relationships of communities. Agnes Nitt was one of the first larger girls i encountered in fiction and i could relate so much to her when I was in school. The Tiffany books make me think of my childhood as i grew up in Yorkshire near where the floodplains gave way to the chalk (near a white horse too), and in a way they make me homesick.

"In Vimes I found a reflection of my own cynicism, it let me create my own watchman on my thoughts, and think about the meaning of Justice and the law, and I still maintain that Night Watch is one of the finest books ever written.
Death made me not so scared of dying, if only for the thought that I would love to give that big lovable skeleton a hug as I doubt he gets many.

"The wizards made me laugh, and the books like Small Gods and Thief of Time really made me think, something that is one of the greatest things about his books. They make you see the world in a whole new light. The sheer complexity and depth to the world and its characters never ceases to amaze me and they feel like old friends. The observations he made about people are just incredible and so witty and funny that they still make me laugh after all this time.
I sit here with the Shepherds's crown in my lap and some part of me does not want to open it, I do not want to say goodbye to the series, and yet I know I never will because I will always keep coming back to it, always. Thank you Sir Terry....from the bottom of my heart and soul for giving us the Discworld and for making the world a better place for so many people."

Nick Mays:
"I wasn't disappointed. It really is a fitting end to the fantastic Discworld series, marrying together the 'Adult' and 'Young Persons' DW strands brilliantly... it really felt that Sir Terry was giving his fans a really fond farewell. There's a lovely and moving afterword from Rob too. When I read the final page, I felt the tears spring to my eyes and I whispered "Thank you, Terry." Just one thing though: I really DO feel that Discworld isn't gone. It's still there, it will always be there... and Rhianna is going to make sure that it lives on still further with the City Watch series and adaptations of the novels, the calendars, the diaries, the games.... We have all this to come, as well as our fond memories. Discworld will never die – it will live forever. We're not just lucky to have been a part of this continuing journey... we are blessed. Thank you indeed, Sir Terry."


Mandy Cosser:
"It is not my place to grieve for Terry Pratchett. For I will always have the books, to read and to reread. The Discworld will never die. Yes, there will be no new Discworld, but there will also be no new Middle Earth. For me, I believe the true grief belongs to those who knew him and loved him personally. I have a very strong belief about Death. When I die, I don't want to be remembered for the fact that I am gone, or how I went. I want to be remembered for how I lived. We, as readers, have a luxury that his family don't. Every time we open one of his books, the worlds he created come alive again."

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06) MORE ODDS AND SODS

6.1 PAUL KIDBY'S DISCWORLD AND BEYOND

...is available for tour bookings. This is from Mr Kidby's official page:

  "The Discworld & Beyond Touring Exhibition is currently available for bookings at museums & galleries around the UK in 2016. For details please contact Steve Marshall, Exhibitions Curator, St. Barbe Museum & Art Gallery Lymington, Hants, SO41 9BH Email steve.marshall@stbarbe-museum.org.uk Phone 01590 676969"

6.2 REVIEWS: THE LONG UTOPIA

Reviewed in The Independent by Barry Forshaw:

  "The late Terry Pratchett was the undisputed master of comic fantasy, cheerfully channelling everything in his armoury to produce witty, immensely imaginative novels. Steven Baxter also sits comfortably in the pantheon, but in his case as Britain's principal writer of 'hard' science fiction, using underpinnings of real science which make his outrageous narrative leaps utterly plausible – and with not a hairy-footed troll to be seen. In other words: Pratchett=Magic/Baxter=Science. But against all the odds, The Long Utopia, the latest in a continuing, now-posthumous collaboration, demonstrates that this forced marriage of disparate talents has produced a diverting offspring, with the scientific comfortably seeing off the supernatural... Those looking for the steady stream of Pratchett wit will be disappointed, though humour is certainly in evidence – but this is very much a science-fiction novel, rich in an awe-inspiring sense of wonder, with mind-boggling concepts thrown out like sparks from a Catherine wheel..."

http://ind.pn/1MWVgDY

...and in The Guardian by Adam Roberts:

  "Our supply of original Pratchett is running dangerously low. Since he continued working almost to the end, there are several posthumous titles in the offing: one more Discworld novel (The Shepherd's Crown, due at the end of August) and two Long Earth books – this one and the series finale. After that, having been so busy a feature of the literary landscape for so many decades, and having inspired a devotion in his readers unparalleled in contemporary writing, Pratchett's voice will finally pass into silence. Something of that melancholy seems to have worked itself into the fabric of this novel, too. Earlier Long Earth books possess various degrees of whimsical warmth and inventive charm. A more autumnal breeze blows through The Long Utopia. It's a book much concerned with things coming to an end, with cosmic-scale disease and with the limits of knowledge. A premise that started as an infinite number of open doors is starting to close them around its characters... If you go to these books looking for the rich comedy of Discworld, you will be disappointed. It's worth remembering that hilarity isn't Pratchett's only mode. He started out as a science fiction writer (and fan), and jotted down the conceit for the Long Earth before he wrote the first Discworld novel. Indeed, one of the things that made his fantasy writing so distinctive was the scientific rigour with which he pursued even the most absurd of his premises. Baxter, similarly prolific, is Britain's leading writer of 'hard' SF, a seemingly inexhaustible fount of thought-provoking, imagination-tickling and sometimes mind-blowing ideas. Their collaboration is more a hymn to the joys of unfettered world-building than it is to story or character. But if the pace of plotting is gentle, the restless inventiveness more than compensates..."

http://bit.ly/1TYCNcs

6.3 WATERSTONES BLOG: LOOKING BACK ON THE DISCWORLD SERIES (CONTINUED)

Our Booksellers' journey through the Discworld continues...

Part Two selections:

For me, [Reaper Man] was the turning point in the Discworld novels – the first that fully uses this fictional world to satirise our own. A very clever and humorous look at the existential by a master wordsmith. – Andrea Richards, Waterstones Dunfermline

Small Gods is not your typical Discworld story; it's not a Vimes whodunnit, or Granny Weatherwax thwacking everyone with a big stick. The plot is much more personal... It explores an oft-overlooked world outside of Ankh-Morpork that's created with Pratchett's inimitable style; there are characters who don't even believe they live on a disc. And it's by far the most thoughtful of all the books, with some of Pratchett's best jokes sitting alongside his most poignant observations... – Chris Taylor, Waterstones Reading Oracle

Men At Arms: The constants of Terry Pratchett – exploring notions of inclusion, exclusion, social mobility, right and wrong, responsibility, action when necessary, faith and belief – are all here. Men At Arms is funny, clever, knowing and a bit darker than previous stories... – Thorie Hinds, Waterstones Exeter High Street

[Interesting Times] is filled with the customary wit and satire which runs through all the Discworld novels, yet it still retains something a bit different to the rest of the collection. It is the scale of the story and the "otherness" of the content which draws me back to it again and again. – Katie Hawthorne, Waterstones Newcastle Emerson Chambers

https://www.waterstones.com/blog/re-reading-discworld-part-two

Part Three selections:

The Last Continent: A story of creation and evolution, exploring myths and folklore common to our own part of the universe as much as the Discworld. It's also a fantastic study of academic institutionalism, colonialism and exploration. Pratchett at his best. No Worries! – James Gray, Waterstones Lancaster King Street

I love the hidden depths of [Carpe Jugulum], as binding together a rollicking good plot is a theme of duality. There are vampires who gives humans a sporting chance, and vampyres, who don't. There is Agnes Nitt, discovering that the little voice in her head has become a full blown second personality. There's a Phoenix, that lays not one egg but two and there is an edge between light and dark. Treading a path along that edge is the always wonderful Granny Weatherwax. Physically and emotionally she appears at her most vulnerable in the novel and her character is all the richer for it... – Rebecca Gransbury, Waterstones Sheffield Orchard Square

The Thief of Time is the apocalyptic action movie of the Discworld series, only with far better dialogue and a plot that does stuff other than blow things up (though there's plenty of that too)... There's a lot of threads to this one that Pratchett masterfully intertwines, managing to write a full-on thriller – albeit one peopled by yetis, baby monks, creepy floating cloaks, witches, clock enthusiasts and more chocolate than you can possibly imagine – without losing eye-watering humour, heart, or his trademark pitch-perfect characterisation. The Thief of Time is a sprawling blockbuster of a novel; one that will make you examine what it really means to be human. – Jenn Morgans, Waterstones King's Road Chelsea

[The Last Hero] is, for me, the best of the Discworld series. It marks the turning point between the high fantasy of the earlier books and the 'fantasy noir' of the later books. It's also a Discworld all-star team-up book, with dozens of recurring characters making appearances. And it manages to be genuinely moving, too... – James Donaldson, Waterstones Kirkcaldy

Night Watch truly demonstrates Pratchett's genius... I read this novel without any prior knowledge of Discworld, and it spurred me on to reading the rest of the series. It's perfect for new readers because it has all the elements of a Discworld story – insofar as it is bizarre, satirical, hilarious yet serious – but it also has a particular cohesion which some of other books occasionally lack. – Lucy Lyndon-Jones, Waterstones Oxford

https://www.waterstones.com/blog/re-reading-discworld-part-three

Part Four selections:

[Monstrous Regiment] is a masterpiece of comedy from Pratchett, who brings to life, for one short book, some characters you really wished popped up more often. It's brilliantly funny and, what's more, Pratchett never shies away from describing the horrors of war... – Emy Howard, Waterstones Cirencester

Going Postal: In Moist, Pratchett gives us one of the best leading men the Discworld has seen since the early Vimes books, a reluctant civil servant using his ability to spin any situation to his advantage makes for wonderful satire about the state of politics... This book also brings up the important point that in the rush of new technology and different ways to communicate it's important to remember that only real tactile letters can be S.W.A.L.K... – Jen Wooton, Waterstones Covent Garden

Wintersmith is all about balance: between the seasons, the elements and – most poignantly in Tiffany's case – between heart and head. Not only must she concentrate on the subtleties of witchcraft, she has to learn to deal with boys and the first tentative allusions to sex... It is this straightforward, no nonsense manner that I find so endearing... – Lucy Hounsom, Waterstones Exeter Roman Gate

[Unseen Academicals] is classic Pratchett (ie: hilarious). It's full of jokes, influences and ideas... as Pratchett says: the important thing about football is that it is not just about football. Plus, the goalkeeper is a librarian orang-utan. What's not to like? – Ian Farnell, Waterstones Sheffield Orchard Square

Snuff is certainly one of the more heavy hitting of the Discworld novels. Slavery, drugs, intimidation and murder cannot be tackled lightly and it is clear the author has strong feelings on the matter... [Vimes'] inner battle throughout the novel to hang onto what is Right and Just, makes this novel for me... – James MacDonald, Waterstones Scarborough

Raising Steam feels a much more expansive read than previous books in the series. Indeed, it can often feel like events are passing by at some speed as you hurtle along the narrative rails. There's a sense that there's no time for dawdling, with a greater degree of reported action than in stories such as Night Watch or Snuff, where the narrative feels almost to take place in realtime... These shifts in speed allow Pratchett to pack in glimpses of far more characters than he might otherwise have been able – which will bring smiles of delight to fans... Trains might not evoke in everyone the excitement which they obviously do in Mr Pratchett. We have now come to a place in history where they are merely functional – part of our everyday lives, and an expensive and often frustrating part at that. Raising Steam makes the idea of this invention – the revolutionary nature of it, which is filled with ideas, hope and possibilities – truly thrilling, and in doing so revitalises the entire series in the same way that Dick Simnel's Iron Girder does the Disc. – Dan Lewis, Waterstones Piccadilly

https://www.waterstones.com/blog/re-reading-discworld-part-four

6.4 ...AND AN INDIVIDUAL RE-READ EFFORT

A well-written piece by one Nat Wassell about re-reading Discworld, particularly The Colour of Magic:

"I love Pratchett's humour and I love his philosophy and I love how he could just find those words to describe something that you never would have thought could have been put into words. I love the in-jokes. I love the inversion of the expected into the unexpected, and how the way he mocks things is almost always gentle. I love Terry Pratchett because he so clearly, so dearly, loved what he did. So then, to 'The Colour of Magic'; the first Discworld book and the first I ever read. Picking it up and starting to read it feels like talking to an old friend... One of my favourite things about Discworld is the way that Pratchett treats the gods, as if they were just another group of people who happened to live on the Disc, which I suppose they kind of are. In this book, the metaphor is stark; they play dice just as they play with the character's lives. I like the concept of Fate and The Lady being the only ones that the people really seem to have any respect for. That sounds a lot like modern day to me – I know more people who believe in Fate and Luck than who truly believe in any god. It's a clever touch, I think..."

http://bit.ly/1ifGAV6

6.5 THE RETURN OF COLLECTIBLE CARROT!

A classic from Discworld.com:

  "Originally released in July 2009, this bronzed pin features Captain Carrot standing to attention, holding the Ankh Morpork flag. It was due to be the first in a series of figurative pins featuring various Discworld denizens. If fact, he turned out to be the only one. It stands at 38mm high."

The Captain Carrot pin is priced at £25.00. For more information, and to order, go to:

http://discworld.com/products/collectables/captain-carrot-collectors-pin/

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07) DISCWORLD MEETING GROUPS NEWS (UPDATE)

Here be some upcoming events hosted by the Pratchett Partisans of Brisbane, Fourecks!

  Dining around the Disc: Uberwald. Wed 7 Oct 7pm. Black Forest German Restaurant Highgate Hill. Join us for a culinary tour of the Disc, or at least Roundworld's closest equivalent. Hosted by Jon

  Brisbane Tolkien Fellowship Dinner Dance. Sat 10 Oct 7pm. Enoggera Bowls Club. RSVP to the Official Facebook Event to get more information

  Carpe Jugul– Vinum! Halloween Party. Friday 30th Oct 7pm. Lady Margolotta's Castle. Appropriate Halloween/Discworld/Formal attire compulsory. $20 per person: platter food, games, prizes and dessert.

  Discworld games afternoon Sat 14 November 2pm-8pm. Community meeting room Brisbane Square library. Drop in during the afternoon for Discworld board and card games, then dinner and drinks starting from 6pm at a local eatery.

  Homicide at Hogswatch. Sat 19 December 6pm-10pm. Grand Central Hotel Dining Car. Will another Murder will be committed in Ankh Morpork? More details will be released soon.

Remember, you can join up at

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

or contact Ula directly at uwilmott@yahoo.com.au

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08) THE SHEPHERD'S CROWN: THE FIRST WOSSNAME REVIEW

By Annie Mac

  This is probably the easiest review I've ever written.

  There will be a detailed review, eventually, but because The Shepherd's Crown is the last Discworld book, Wossname is likely to wait for some weeks or even months before tackling any in-depth analysis. So for now I can say that everything that needs to be said about the can be summed up in one sentence:

  The Shepherd's Crown, fifth and final novel in the Tiffany Aching sequence, was written by Terry Pratchett.

  No, really. That is the single most important quality of this book. Are you with me so far?

  Before you read any further, let me assure you that you *can* read further. Those of you who haven't taken possession of a copy of The Shepherd's Crown yet, or who are saving it to be opened at some future date when the finality of it seems more bearable, can read this entire review without learning one thing about the plot. Over the years of writing pre-publication reviews of Discworld novels and other works by Terry Pratchett, I often sweated proverbial bullets trying to write a review that discussed the contents of each book without giving away anything about its contents; but this time there was no advance copy and the lay of the land is irrevocably changed by the knowledge that there will be no more Discworld novels, not ever.

  Much as I loved them – and continue to love them – Pratchett's last Discworld books leading up to The Shepherd's Crown, especially Raising Steam, felt different in style, rather like they had been dictated (which of course they were, by necessity, as his PCA advanced, but the point is that they *felt* dictated, and this is possibly what made some long-time fans, so used to his pre-Embuggerance style, less comfortable). The Shepherd's Crown, though, feels like it was written, as in both written down and typed up by its creator.

  Yes, written.

  It matters not one whit that this was a physical impossibility; I'll say it again: The Shepherd's Crown feels like it was written, by Terry Pratchett's own hand.

  The dialogue is beautiful. The storylines have direction and flow. And best of all, there is a sweetness of spirit, a full measure of heart and soul and brim-filled affection for his characters, that in my opinion makes The Shepherd's Crown stand without qualification amidst what I consider to be his greatest works: Night Watch, Nation, the rest of the Tiffany Aching series. And I don't feel that it counts as spoilage to say that this final book has integrated Sir Terry Pratchett's great creation, brought the evolutionary changes in the Discworld series' forty-one novels together in a way that sets the stage for an imagined future.

  Oh, and I cried. More than a bit. But not from sadness at the finality of The Shepherd's Crown – no, I cried because the writing was beautiful and the story was perfect.

  They say one should go out on the crest of a wave, leave the pitch as a winner. With The Shepherd's Crown, Terry Pratchett has certainly succeeded at that.

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09) MORE IMAGES OF THE MONTH: PAUL KIDBY

Young Esk, drawn in 2009 for a Talpress edition:
http://bit.ly/1MxCTV0

One of my all-time favourite Kidby drawings – the Band with Rocks In channelling Roundworld's Sgt Pepper album cover, featuring many of my favourite Kidby renderings of favourite Discworld characters:
http://bit.ly/1Wqpxyx

An early version of the cover art from The Shepherd's Crown:
https://pbs.twimg.com/media/CPLBf4cWcAApUvN.jpg

Granny's boots... starting with Paul Kidby's own boots, photographed:
http://bit.ly/1RazddG

...to eventually become these (The Shepherd's Crown, chapter 5 illustration):
http://bit.ly/1iVeJKP

Discworld Massif characters identified... left to right, back row to front row!

1. Nigel the Destroyer, Moist von Lipwig, Adora Belle Dearheart, Detritus, Samuel Vimes, CMOT Dibbler, Otto Chriek, Cohen the Barbarian, Fred Colon, Magrat Garlick, Verence of Lancre, Gimlet, Nobby Nobbs, Grabpot Thundergust, Tiffany Aching, Mr Fusspot, Errol, and Of the Twilight the Darkness (and the uncredited mime "photobombing" them:
http://bit.ly/1QHWxyH

2. Casanunda, The Dean, Lord Vetinari, Leonard of Quirm, Mort as the Duke of Sto Helit, Death, Granny Weatherwax, Ponder Stibbons, Ridcully, Rincewind, Nanny Ogg, Greebo, Twoflower, The Luggage, and The Librarian:
https://instagram.com/p/8FeJOPsiDN/

3. Ysabell, Lord Downey, Constable Flint, Dr Whiteface, Susan, Albert, Carrot, Angua, Lupine (Mrs Cake's potential son-in-law), Lu-Tze, Reg Shoe, Eric Thursley (the well known demonologist – not), Cheery Littlebottom, Igor, Snorri Snorrisson, and Gaspode:

http://bit.ly/1JxLjqR

For more of Mr Kidby's Discworld art, go to https://instagram.com/paulkidby/

Also, an announcement from the Official Paul Kidby page:

  "As part of The Salisbury Arts Trail I will be signing prints & books, including 'The Shepherd's Crown' at Longford Barn, Bodenham, Salisbury, Wiltshire, SP5 4EJ on Sat 3rd October 2-4pm. Items are available for sale or bring your own copies. My work will be on show at the barn throughout the trail week, 3rd -11th October, 10am-6pm daily."

http://www.plainartssalisbury.co.uk/salisbury-art-trail/

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10) CLOSE

  And this time, this really is it for September. I need a break! See you soon, and a happy autumnal equinox to most of the world and happy vernal equinox to dwellers in Fourecks and the Land of Fog. See you soon...

– Annie Mac

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

———————————————————————————————————
Copyright (c) 2015 by Klatchian Foreign Legion
wossname: (GNU Terry Pratchett)
Sir Terry Pratchett's right-hand man Rob Wilkins will be making a brief appearance in Fourecks this coming week. He will be signing copies of his afterword in The Shepherd's Crown, and answering questions about his work with Sir Pterry. Not to be missed!

Adelaide event:
When: Tuesday 29th September 2015
Venue: Dymocks Adelaide, 135 Rundle Mall, Adelaide, South Australia (phone 08 8223 5380)
Time: 12:30pm
Tickets: FREE! But must be pre-booked. See below.

Melbourne event:
When: Wednesday 30th September 2015
Venue: Dymocks Melbourne, 234 Collins Street, Melbourne 3000
Time: 6.30pm
Tickets: FREE! But must be booked in advance. To book, go to:

http://www.trybooking.com/Booking/BookingEventSummary.aspx?eid=161340

Editor's note: Wossname will be there, of course!

*

And why, do I hear you ask, is Mr Wilkins in Australia? Here's why:

"A unique scholarship for South Australian university students has been funded by the estate of best-selling British author Terry Pratchett. The $100,000 biannual scholarship will support a student studying a Masters by research at UniSA's Hawke Research Institute. In addition, scholarship holders will be given the opportunity to study at Trinity College Dublin, in Ireland, for up to a year during their two years of study. The estate of the late, and much loved, author announced the endowment of the Sir Terry Pratchett Memorial Scholarship in Adelaide today. UniSA Vice Chancellor Professor David Lloyd said the perpetual scholarship, like Pratchett's books, was a gift that would endure for generations. 'This extraordinary gift is the largest student scholarship of its kind in the history of the university,' Lloyd said. 'Terry was someone who was never shy of contributing to the things he believed in and as recipients of this wonderful bequest we are reminded of his commitment to inquiry and to learning.'..."

http://bit.ly/1KZuQBf

"In an envelope sealed until after his death in March, best-selling British author Terry Pratchett kept a $1 million secret, honouring a great friendship, a love of science fiction and his respect for higher education. Half a world away, the University of South Australia will now benefit from Pratchett's generosity in perpetuity, thanks to his close relationship with vice-chancellor David Lloyd. 'Last time we saw Terry, we went to his house in the UK last year and the kids were out feeding the sheep,' Professor Lloyd said. 'The next day he gave a letter to (manager) Rob Wilkins and in the letter he said he wanted to give this to the university. It was only opened on his birthday in April this year,' Professor Lloyd told The Australian..."

http://bit.ly/1QHTpmq

"The collaborative scholarship builds on a growing relationship between two very different universities in two hemispheres, who share links both through research and their strong associations with Sir Terry Pratchett and is underpinned by an MOU between Trinity College Dublin's Trinity Long Room Hub and UniSA's Hawke Research Institute.

Dean of Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences at Trinity College Dublin, Prof Darryl Jones, says the School of English at Trinity was honoured to have Sir Terry Pratchett as an Adjunct Professor. 'His wit, his warmth, his intelligence and above all else, his humanity made him an unforgettable friend and colleague,' Prof Jones says. 'We miss him dearly, and we're delighted to be part of this joint endeavour with the University of South Australia. The Sir Terry Pratchett Memorial Scholarship is a fitting tribute to a wonderful writer and a remarkable man.'..."

And there's even some video! This is a four-minute selection of bits from the formal announcement, featuring David Lloyd, Rob Wilkins... and The Hat!

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mE4coOWdeKI&feature=youtu.be

http://bit.ly/1VkFLH7


wossname: (GNU Terry Pratchett)
Wossname
Newsletter of the Klatchian Foreign Legion
September 2015 (Volume 18, Issue 9, Post 1)

********************************************************************
WOSSNAME is a free publication offering news, reviews, and all the other stuff-that-fits pertaining to the works and activities 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, Wolfiekins, 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) THE SHEPHERD'S CROWN NEWS
04) ODDS AND SODS
05) SIR PTERRY'S HUMANIST FUNERAL
06) WITHOUT WHOM: ROB WILKINS
07) DISCWORLD PLAYS NEWS
08) DISCWORLD CONVENTION NEWS
09) DISCWORLD ARTS AND CRAFTS NEWS
10) DISCWORLD MEETING GROUPS NEWS
11) DISCWORLD GAMES NEWS
12) TERRY PRATCHETT: GUILTY OF LITERATURE? WELL ACTUALLY, YES
13) IMAGES OF THE MONTH
14) CLOSE

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01) QUOTES OF THE MONTH

"It was a hard book to complete because Terry's health was declining in the last year. But he was still enjoying the writing. He wasn't able to polish it quite as he would have liked and there were a few ideas that he would have loved to have followed up on and he never got the opportunity."

– Rob Wilkins, on the occasion of the The Shepherd's Crown launch

"This is not a fantasy novel intended for 'younger readers' as it is wont to be pigeonholed... This is a book for all ages, the tour de force of one of the English language's greatest authors, who, in the midst of encroaching darkness and facing so many terrors of his own, has contrived to astound us one last time with his craft."

– David Lloyd, Vice-Chancellor of the University of South Australia

"For those reading The Shepherd's Crown 'Mind how you go' are considered to be the Pratchett magic words. We'd always say them to someone travelling somewhere. They were also the last words I said to my grandfather and my father."

– Rhianna Pratchett

"I am proud and honoured to be a part of such a wonderful series. I think of the cover as my own tribute and thanks to Terry and his wonderful literary creations."

– Paul Kidby on his cover art for The Shepherd's Crown

"Pratchett is in good company: only the stories of truly great writers end up belonging more to their readers than their creators."

– Natalie Haynes in The Independent

"Terry Pratchett's novels are stylistically adept: good muscular prose, not mucked around with for effect (except sometimes!), enlivened by wit, sharp observation, a unique take on the world at large and whatever the subject of social satire might be for the time being, a brimming sense of fun and the ridiculous, and overall an approach to the reader that feels inclusive, a letting in on the joke, an amused welcome to the world he is writing about."

– author Christopher Priest, listing some of the qualities he is sure will keep Terry Pratchett in the forefront of public author-awareness for at least as long as Dickens

"Thank you everyone for getting the Shepherd's Crown to Number One. Terry would have been so proud"

– from the official Pratchett Twitter account, 3rd September 2015

"Hopefully, Discworld will now be frozen like a snapshot and enter the pages of literary history, and Pratchett's estate will resist publishers who pray that it is turned into a co-written franchise which survives rigor mortis, the sun going nova and everything else. That's the fate of almost every successful writer of airport thrillers, which is perfectly all right since that genre deserves no better, but literature is a different matter."

– journalist Pratik Kanjilal

"Reading Pratchett, like reading Austen, requires commitment, and a willingness to look under the surface."

– essayist and language researcher Annie Coral Demosthenous

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02) LETTER FROM YOUR EDITOR

Ook oook and eek – most of all eeek! Every time I think I have the September issue ready to wrap up and send out, another newsworthy item falls across my eyes or into my inbox, and the wordcount grows and grows. At this point I've decided to split up what was meant to be a single issue and send part of it now and the rest before the rapidly-approaching end of the month. So below the line is a *lot* of news, and soon there will be a proper long editorial and a *lot* of reviews...

– Annie Mac, Editor

p.s. The Discworld Plays section is *huge* this month. Well done, Pratchett fans of the theatrical world!

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03) THE SHEPHERD'S CROWN NEWS

3.0 ROB WILKINS IN PERSON IN ADELAIDE AND MELBOURNE!!!

Rob Wilkins, of @terryandrob Rob will be making a brief appearance in Fourecks this coming week. He will be signing copies of his afterword in The Shepherd's Crown, and answering questions about his work with Sir Pterry. Not to be missed!

Adelaide event:
When: Tuesday 29th September 2015
Venue: Dymocks Adelaide, 135 Rundle Mall, Adelaide, South Australia (phone 08 8223 5380)
Time: 12:30pm
Tickets: FREE! But must be pre-booked. See below.

Melbourne event:
When: Wednesday 30th September 2015
Venue: Dymocks Melbourne, 234 Collins Street, Melbourne 3000
Time: 6.30pm
Tickets: FREE! But must be booked in advance. To book, go to:

http://www.trybooking.com/Booking/BookingEventSummary.aspx?eid=161340

Editor's note: Wossname will be there, of course!

3.1 THE SHEPHERD'S CROWN: STORMING THE BESTSELLER LISTS

From The Bookseller:

We're delighted to report that the final Discworld novel by Sir Terry Pratchett, The Shepherd's Crown, has rocketed straight to the #1 spot in Nielsen BookScan's chart, selling 52,846 copies in its first week. This is Sir Terry's tenth British Number One, and a wonderfully fitting tribute to the beloved writer's final work... Hailed as a 'magnificent sign-off' by the Daily Telegraph and a 'funny, fearless farewell' by the Daily Mail, The Shepherd's Crown has already garnered an outpouring of love and admiration from fans and critics... Francesca Dow, MD of Penguin Random House Children's division, commented, 'We are extremely proud to publish the long-awaited final novel in the Discworld series. The Shepherd's Crown is an incredibly special book and it is a real privilege to share and celebrate Terry's last work with his fans. We cannot think of a more fitting way to honour the late, great Sir Terry Pratchett.'

Terry Pratchett has held the Official Top 50 number one for a second week, as The Shepherd's Crown (Doubleday Children's) sold 27,386 copies, worth £318,576, through Nielsen BookScan's Total Consumer Market... The book also took the Children's top spot — Pratchett's 40th week atop that chart since BookScan records...

http://discworld.com/crowning-glory-sir-terry-pratchett/

3.2 WHAT *IS* A SHEPHERD'S CROWN?

From Roundworld's Royal Albert Memorial Museum:

"Who would have thought that there are royal headdresses for shepherds? English folklore describes the internal moulds of fossil sea urchins as 'Shepherd's crowns'. Sea urchins have a characteristic conical shape and five decorative ridges that meet at the top of the shell like the ribs of a crown. Notably the Cretaceous sea urchin species Micraster, Echinocorys and Conulus have found their way into English folklore.

"Shepherds may have come across petrified sea urchins, while caring for their sheep on the chalky downlands of southern England.

"An interesting folklore originates from Suffolk in eastern England where fossil sea urchins are known as 'Fairy loaves'. The loaf-like shape of some sea urchins inspired people to placed them by the hearth as charms..."

http://bit.ly/1Kjndkg

3.3 REPORT: THE SHEPHERD'S CROWN LAUNCH EVENT IN MELBOURNE

Dymocks booksellers, always active supporters of the works of Pratchett, let the Victorian Discworld Klatch take over their Melbourne city centre flagship store's cafe for a Discworld party on the night of the Australian release of The Shepherd's Crown last month. Here be a Wossname exclusive report...

By Damian Perry

The Victorian Discworld Klatch, in partnership with Dymocks Melbourne store, held a Shepherd's Crown book event. People dressed up, even with the threat of people saying something about it (according to Twitter). Fun and games were had throughout the night. We had book readings, a colouring in competition, book cover designs, a costume competition and Playdough-tionary.

Clap-o-metre was the judging tool of the evening. Leanne, dressed as Tiffany, won the book cover competition.

Playdough-tionary. Two rival tables were set up. One had Death. One had no Death.

During the first few rounds, the non-Death table dominated. We had (take a look at the Klatch page for pictures):

– A Dibbler in green.
– An orange golem.
– Two purple blobs that were obviously going to be the entire Discworld...

And then because we were guessing within 30 seconds we changed the rules so that Suzie alone would guess and choose a winner. From there, Imogen's swamp dragon won, followed by Tiffany Aching – the first of the Death table wins.

In the last round nobody had any idea. It turned out they were Feegles. Deb was brought in to decide which was the best and strangely the yellow Feegle beat the blue Feegle (it takes more skill to make a Feegle out of yellow play dough).

In the playoffs Imogen took on Death. Making sheep. Suzie took her life in her hands by picking Imogen's multicoloured sheep over Death's "Where is the green" sheep. Imogen won the book pack. Amanda dressed as Susan won the book pack for the best coloured cover.

There was a shakeup in the costume competition when Death went home early and a tiny Tiffany turned up to nab the best costume prize. Apparently it's not good form to let a little kid lose a costume competition.

All over the Internet there are articles about how we spent the night of the last Discworld book release. The Melbourne Klatch group spent the evening in friendly revels with friends, playing games and colouring in. A marvellous night had by all.

Massive thanks to Louise and Dymocks Collins St. She always does her best to entertain us and loves the Discworld fandom. Now time to go and read the book.

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

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04) ODDS AND SODS

4.0 PRATCHETT FAMILY BACKS THE CALL FOR A STATUE

"Sir Terry Pratchett's family is backing a campaign to have a statue of the author erected in Wiltshire... In the past two weeks, hundreds of fans have signed a petition for a permanent statue to the writer in Salisbury. A spokeswoman for the family said he would 'undoubtedly' have found the amusement 'in almost any statue'. She said: 'Sir Terry always said he would like to be useful in death, so a statue where a pigeon can stop for a well-earned rest would have amused him no end.' The campaign for a permanent 'tribute to Sir Terry' was launched on Change.Org by Emily Brand..."

http://www.bbc.com/news/uk-england-wiltshire-34334105

4.1 DISCWORLD BARON TO BE AUCTIONED

"Following the successful Barons Trail, each of the Barons will now go up for auction. With money raised from the sales going to The Trussell Trust and supporting their work to stop UK hunger. The auction will take place at Salisbury Cathedral. From 12 September auction catalogues/souvenir guides can be purchased in advance from Casa Fina and the Salisbury Cathedral Shop, as well as on the night.

"From Wednesday 23 September, all 25 Barons will be displayed on the North Lawn of Salisbury Cathedral and auction guests will be able to view the barons closely on 1 October between 6.30pm and 7.30pm, at the drinks reception prior to the auction commencing. People can pre-bid for a Baron online at The Barons Charter:

http://www.thebaronscharter.org.uk/

"Please note that there will be no parking within the Cathedral grounds; please use City Centre car parks."

The Barons' Auction Salisbury 2015
When: Thursday 1st Oct 2015
Venue: Salisbury Cathedral
Time: 6:30 pm
Tickets: £15* To purchase online, go to http://bit.ly/1ia9JAO and click the Buy Tickets button

*All tickets purchased online will also be subject to an additional £2 transaction fee per ticket. Tickets purchased in person or on the telephone do not incur additional charges.

http://www.cityhallsalisbury.co.uk/index.php?page=1598

For full details go to http://www.cityhallsalisbury.co.uk/images/BaronsInformation.pdf

http://www.trusselltrust.org/

4.2 PRATCHETT FANS TRIBUTE VIDEO UPDATE

From last month's main issue: "With the final Discworld book almost upon us, a video tribute seems a fitting way to channel our appreciation for Terry Pratchett's words. Send us your contribution before 27 August 2015, the day THE SHEPHERD'S CROWN is released, and we'll take it from there – so you can get on with reading."

And here it is!

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lP1rJNOwYls

4.3 THE DUEL, FINISHED!

Remember the animated short film project, "The Duel", that was given Professor Sir Pterry's blessing many moons ago? It's finished now! By Ben Harper, Sean Mullen and Alex Sherwood (and officially "mucked about" by Terry Pratchett, out of the Animation Hub, Ballyfermot College of Further Education, Trinity College Dublin & the Irish Film Board with music by Paul Lynch, here it is:

https://vimeo.com/77104562

4.4 ROB WILKINS AT THE LONDON SHEPHERD'S CROWN RELEASE EVENT

In the London Evening Standard:

"Rob Wilkins, who was Sir Terry's assistant, gave a reading from The Shepherd's Crown at a midnight launch in Waterstones in Piccadilly... Mr Wilkins, 46, told the Standard: 'This is Terry's final novel and to me there can be nothing more important. This has got to be a celebration of him, all of his work culminating and giving him a right good send off. He was so modest that he would look at all of this and wonder what all the fuss was about. We are going to have a proper memorial next year. But this is it, the final Discworld novel. There will be spin-off projects and things like that going off into the future and also we have Narrativia, our film and TV company. We are actively out there developing material at the moment. Terry's daughter Rhianna is actually working on the script right now for The We[sic] Free Men.'... Mr Wilkins added: 'I actually say in the back of the book it wasn't finished as Terry would have liked. What I mean by that is he wrote the book like a giant literary jigsaw then pieced it all together at the end and kept polishing it until you couldn't see the join between the various parts and once it was assembled then he would be happy. But he didn't quite get to the point of assembling all of the bits when he died. Being at the coal face with all those ideas coming out – you would never know the direction he was going in. He would even throw me a curved ball. We were lucky with his Alzheimer's, his variant meant we had more of Terry for a longer time. It was only the last few months that we started losing the Terry we loved. In January that was the start of the end and it was terribly upsetting. Terry wasn't a sentimental man, we never had our final discussion or the final chat or anything like that. Every day was a new day and you just dealt with the problems his disease brought on a day to day basis.'..."

http://bit.ly/1ElXCe5

4.5 THE END...

...according to Neil Gaiman:

"In an interview with The Times, Gaiman revealed that his long-time friend, who died in March aged 66, had planned a different ending to the one that was published yesterday but had died before getting it down on paper. 'This is still the saddest moment for me,' Gaiman said. 'When I talked to Terry about it there was one little beautiful twist that would have made people cry, but he never got to write it."... The scene 'would have made the book, but he never got to write it. He simply ran out of time', he added... Gaiman says that his friend didn't want his unfinished work to be published. The American Gods author said Pratchett wanted 'whatever he was working on at the time of his death to be taken out along with his computers, to be put in the middle of a road and for a steamroller to steamroll over them all'. Along with Pratchett's millions of fans, Gaiman said that he was 'ridiculously glad that hasn't happened'. The author also revealed that he was working on Pratchett's last request: a TV adaptation of Good Omens, the 1990 novel they wrote together about an angel and demon working together to foil the Apocalypse...".

http://bit.ly/1OS19l7 (BEWARE: CONTAINS SPOILERS)

Also, in the Daily Mail, which for all its myriad sins has long been a supporter and promulgator of both Sir Pterry's books *and* his personal crusades:

"Mr Gaiman also revealed that the ending of The Shepherd's Crown – Sir Terry's final novel – was not the one which the author had intended. Tragically, the writer died before he managed to get his preferred conclusion down on paper.
'When I talked to Terry about it there was one little beautiful twist that would have made people cry, but he never got to write it,' Mr Gaiman said. 'He simply ran out of time. But if you are going to die mid-book, Terry did it as best you possibly can.'"

http://dailym.ai/1VYWEta

[Editor's note: I found the ending to The Shepherd's Crown well sufficient, and also found the "ending that never was" was well and truly telegraphed by events in the story. Your mileage may vary, but for me, the end as published was perfect.]

4.6 LOOKING BACK AT THE JOHNNY MAXWELL BOOKS

On Den of Geek, Andrew Blair deconstructs Pratchett's superb Johnny Maxwell trilogy:

"The most interesting thing about Only You Can Save Mankind were its observations on empathy and detachment with regards moving images, but its ending counteracts the popular aphorism by stating that violence does solve some things. It might seem surprising in the context of the book, but then Pratchett has disposed of monsters with poetic abandon since. While examining the way in which gamers have to detach themselves from what they're actually doing – I mean, try playing any real world conflict-based shoot 'em up while thinking about the reality the simulation is depicting – he also brings in images of the Gulf War on TV. Considering the ending states unambiguously that some monsters must be fought, it's ultimately a book that says 'Ask questions first, shoot later'...

"Johnny and the Dead asks the reader to consider something they might see in their everyday life, to look beyond the surface of it and ask questions. It goes one step further, again, with its ending, where the dead stop waiting around for the next stage of their afterlives to happen. Again, it takes the ending you expect and gives it a little tweak, in this case with the people of the graveyard deciding that waiting to be saved isn't all that. Inspired by councils selling off graveyards for tiny amounts to get rid of the costs of upkeep, it's a wry and fond look at local history that might inspire you to do some investigation of your local graveyard...

"All of Johnny's friends get satisfying character development in the third and final book in the series, Johnny And The Bomb. This book, especially, with its mentions of the Trousers of Time and 'Millennium hand and shrimp,' complements ideas in the Discworld universe, almost like a primer. That these come from a character called Mrs Tachyon may be entirely deliberate, as a theoretical time-travelling particle has echoes of both this book and the existence of something like the Discworld. While the ending might be the most straightforwardly heroic of the three books, Johnny's friends are put into the midst of the fantastic more than in any other story..."

http://bit.ly/1NJJpLJ

4.7 A LOVELY ELEGIAC POEM

Recently (re)discovered: a poem by Sam Garland aka /u/Poem_for_your_sprog, originally published on Reddit on... you know... *that* day:

The sun goes down upon the Ankh,
And slowly, softly fades –
Across the Drum; the Royal Bank;
The River-Gate; the Shades.

A stony circle's closed to elves;
And here, where lines are blurred,
Between the stacks of books on shelves,
A quiet 'Ook' is heard.

A copper steps the city-street
On paths he's often passed;
The final march; the final beat;
The time to rest at last.

He gives his badge a final shine,
And sadly shakes his head –
While Granny lies beneath a sign
That says: 'I aten't dead...'

To read the whole poem, go to:

http://bit.ly/1gCi0wl

/u/Poem_for_your_sprog's Twitter account:

https://twitter.com/Poem4your_sprog

4.8 DISCWORLD AS A MODEL OF FAIRNESS

Here be an interesting essay on the "fairness of Discworld" by academician and author Kari Sperring:

"My idea of heaven does not map too well with that of the Nac Mac Feegle, but when I stop and think about it, when it comes to Discworld, they're on to something. I don't yearn for thievery and poaching, but I do long for a fairer world. And Discworld is one of the fairest worlds I know. It's not a tidy kind of fairness. Discworld has rules and internal logic, which applies to everyone equally and often rather messily. The first inventor of a steam engine on Discworld was Ned Simnel, who failed to do his maths properly and managed to blow himself up in the process. Mr Hong failed to carry out the necessary research before opening his fish bar on the site of a former fish god temple, on an astronomically significant night in Ankh Morpork, with bad results. All that was left of him was one kidney and half an earhole. As in reality, on Discworld, actions have consequences and they aren't always pleasant, but they are logical and they pay attention (sometimes, anyway) to the intentions of the people involved...

"The bulk of Pratchett's heroes are ordinary people, not particularly clever or good-looking or advantaged. Some of them are kind and decent, like Captain Carrot of the Ankh Morpork Watch, the city's incompetent police force, or the witch Magrat, but a lot of them aren't. They're just people, with a full complement of flaws. But these ordinary people come up against big problems, familiar problems of injustice and cruelty and unfairness, and they fight back in a variety of ways (some devious, some dirty) and they win... Many of the Discworld books deal with discrimination, particularly that based on race – species, on the Discworld – and the outcomes are fair... Discworld is a highly moral universe, one in which the intent of actions is taken into account as well as their outcomes, in which the million-to-one-chance comes off (and the characters know this and play up to it), in which no-one gets a pass because they're special or privileged. It's a world in which the little people – the workers who run the Clacks system of communication, say – can take on Big Business and Big Power..."

http://bit.ly/1KHXROh

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05) SIR PTERRY'S HUMANIST FUNERAL

By humanist celebrant Kenneth Greenway:

"An email from Isabel of the British Humanist Association dropped into my inbox On March 17th 2015 asking the funeral network to email her if they wanted to be considered for conducting Terry's funeral, I was taken aback by such an opportunity. I was with my wife at the time I read the email, I looked at her and said 'Terry's family want a BHA celebrant to do his funeral and we're being asked if we like to do it and why. Shall I go for it?' My wife simply said, 'Do it!' I thought that living in Essex and 160 miles away from Salisbury would work against me. So, if truth be told I spent no more than 10 minutes writing an email back to Isabel. I spoke of why Terry and his Discworld books meant so much to me and the meaning his work had to my wife and I. TP's Discworld books were a hot topic of conversation on our first date. At our wedding we had a Discworld cake and our tables were named after locations on the Disc. I've personally been a fan since I first read 'Mort' about 25 years ago and I own every book, merchandise, maps, and all kinds of other stuff associated with the Discworld.

"I discovered I had been chosen to conduct the funeral in the evening of the following day (18th March) At the time the call came in I was bathing our two girls. My wife took the call as she wasn't with me " she was recovering from an operation and couldn't lift things. After the phone call she came running upstairs, in a very excitable state. I said, 'You can't run, you've had an op!' She was very excited and not making any sense. Once she'd calmed down she said 'They want you!' Being a bit slow, my reply was 'Who does?' She said 'Terry's family want you to do his funeral. I've just spoken to Rob'. I was immediately stunned in to silence and couldn't quite believe it. My wife and I hugged and then I felt very overwhelmed, the feeling of responsibility was almost crushing. To be the person selected to help those closest to TP to say their last goodbye felt out of this world and a bit unreal..."

A lovely piece, well worth reading in its entirety:

http://www.writerscafe.org/writing/KGreenway/1621131/

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06) WITHOUT WHOM (A TRIBUTE TO THE LIVING): ROB WILKINS

By Steven D'Aprano

Rob Wilkins, PTerry's personal assistant, is a very private man who would never dream of blowing his own horn, so here are some facts he is too modest to admit to in public:

Rob was apparently born in 1968 or 1969, but actually entered the world in 1847, possibly from an alternate universe. Having invented the time machine that inspired the writer HG Wells when he attended a private demonstration at the secret Wilkins laboratory, Rob travelled forward in time from 1877 to save us from the coming Machine Apocalypse when our iPhones achieve sentience and rebel over the indignity of having to display webpages like "You Won't Believe These 10 Secrets About Katy Perry's Favourite Ice-Cream Flavour!".

Rob was the inspiration behind "Interesting Times" when he took over the Chinese government and ran the country as Supreme Dictator for three years. Rob left the job because it wasn't challenging enough. Of course the Chinese hushed it up, but Sir PTerry found out about it while discussing bananananana daiquiri recipes on Alt.Fan.Pratchett.

Rob was also the inspiration for Willikins, Sam Vimes' butler. Sir PTerry got the idea for a character who was half Jeeves and half street fighter when Chuck Norris arrived at their doorstep one night, begging Rob to take him in as an apprentice and teach him everything he knows about martial arts. Initially refusing, Rob relented after Norris proved his dedication by standing at their gate, through rain, sleet and hail, for thirty-eight days without food, drink or sleep. Unfortunately the training regime was too hard for Norris, who left after just two weeks, a broken man.

When Rob's crime-fighting activities prevent him from performing his usual duties as head chef at The Fat Duck, Heston Blumenthal stands in for him.

Rumours that Rob has been banned from every casino in Europe for being too skilful at Blackjack are unfounded. He has only been banned from half of them. He owns the others.

The producers of the Twilight movie begged Rob to play Edward the sparkly vampire, but Rob turned them down because he didn't want to overshadow the rest of the cast and make them look bad.

At the age of five, Rob saved his uncle from being eaten by a lion after the uncle climbed into the lion's enclosure at the London Zoo to win a drunken bet.

Elon Musk gets all of his best ideas from Rob.

While ghost-writing the scripts for the Hobbit trilogy, Rob discovered a secret message hidden in the original book. Despite what everyone believes, JRR Tolkien never actually existed. The Middle Earth books were actually written by JK Rowling.

Also, as part of a documentary about the medieval witch trials on the History Channel, Rob swam the English Channel fully clothed with his hands tied behind his back.

Your Editor feels moved to add:

Of course, that's just messin'. But Rob Wilkins' greatest achievement – and gift to us all – was the ten years he spent as personal assistant, aide de camp, driver, literal (and literary) amanuensis, voice double, public representative and general runner of interference for Sir Terry Pratchett. Without Rob, Sir Pterry's final years of battling his Embuggerance would have been far more difficult. Even now, Mr Wilkins continues to serve as a guardian of the Pratchett body of work and future adaptations and related projects thereof. So charge your glasses and raise a toast to Rob Wilkins. Hurrah!

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07) DISCWORLD PLAYS NEWS

7.1 REMINDER: MORT IN BRISBANE (SEPTEMBER–OCTOBER)

The Brisbane Arts Theatre's latest Discworld production, Mort, continues its run.

When: currently running, through to 3rd October 2015
Venue: Brisbane Arts Theatre, 210 Petrie Terrace, Brisbane, QLD 4000
(phone 07 3369 2344)
Time: 8pm Thursdays (except 27th August), Fridays and Saturdays; 6.30pm
Sundays (6th and 20th September)
Tickets: Adults $31, Concession $25, Group 10+ $25, Group 75+ $20, Gold
Members $15, Members $25, Student Rush $10 (10 mins before curtain).
Members can redeem their included season tickets for this show. There
are no refunds or exchanges once tickets have been purchased. To
purchase tickets online, go to http://bit.ly/1Imz2tJ

http://artstheatre.com.au/show/mort

7.2 NEW: WYRD SISTERS IN HEXHAM (NOVEMBER)

The Queen's Hall Theatre Club will perform their production of Wyrd Sisters in November.

When: Thursday 26th – Saturday 28th November 2015
Venue: Main Theatre, Queen's Hall Arts Centre, Beaumont Street, Hexham, Northumberland NE46 3LS (Box Office 01434 652477)
Time: 7:30pm
Tickets: £10 (concessions £9, under 18s £7). The Box Office is open from 10.00am – 5.00pm Monday to Friday & 10.00am to 4.00pm Saturday and one hour before the start of every performance. To buy online, go to http://bit.ly/1O5eIAp and click on the tab marked BOOK, then click the BOOK tab for the date of your choice.

http://www.queenshall.co.uk/events/terry-pratchett%E2%80%99s-wyrd-sisters
http://www.queenshall.co.uk/

7.3 UPDATES: WYRD SISTERS IN UPPINGHAM (OCTOBER)

Tickets are now available for the Uppingham Theatre Company's forthcoming production of Wyrd Sisters!

"Why not visit Lancre this Halloween, it has everything, witches, evil Dukes and Duchesses, strolling players, ghosts, you name it, its got it, and for only £10, yes £10 folks(£2 going to charity with each ticket old) you could be transported to the mythical kingdom of Lancre!"

When: Thursday 29th October through Saturday 31st October 2015
Venue: Uppingham Theatre, 32 Stockerston Road, Uppingham, Rutland LE15 9UD
Time: 7.30pm all evening shows; Saturday matinee 2.30pm
Tickets: £10 (includes a £2 charity donation per ticket to Rutland Reminders). Available in person from Uppingham Sports and Books, 9 High Street East, Uppingham. To purchase online, go to https://www.wegottickets.com/location/1664 or http://www.uppingham.co.uk/School-Shop

http://www.rutlandreminders.org.uk/
http://www.uppinghamtheatrecompany.org.uk/
https://www.facebook.com/pages/Uppingham-Theatre-Company/215743641793859

Here be a fine photo of Nanny, Granny and Magrat checking out the scumble harvest:
https://pbs.twimg.com/media/CPXNfbCWUAAHPmS.jpg

7.4 REMINDER: UNSEEN ACADEMICALS IN BUCKINGHAMSHIRE (NOVEMBER)

The Marlow Players will present their production of Unseen Academicals in November.

When: 12th, 13th and 14th November 2015
Venue: Shelley Theatre, Court Garden, Pound Lane, Marlow, Bucks SL7 2AG
Time: 8pm all shows
Tickets: £12. To purchase online, go to http://marlowplayers.org.uk/product-category/boxoffice/

http://www.marlowplayers.org.uk/

7.5 NEW: GUARDS! GUARDS! IN GUERNSEY (OCTOBER)

The Guernsey Youth Theatre will present their production of Guards! Guards! early next month. This is probably the firs time in Guernsey history that a newspaper advert was placed to find an actor to play an orangutan! And fittingly, proceeds from the performances are going to Sir Pterry's beloved Orangutan Foundation. Oook!

When: 5th and 6th October 2015
Venue: Princess Royal Centre for Performing Arts, Les Ozouets, Guernsey GY1 2UB
Time: 7:30pm
Tickets: £10 (£8 concessions). To purchase tickets, go to http://www.guernseytickets.gg (or ring 74999)

https://www.guernseytickets.gg/show.asp
https://www.facebook.com/GuernseyYouthTheatre

Editor's note: about that orangutan advert, go to http://bit.ly/1OB2QFH for a shufti. Cute photo!

7.6 NEW: MASKERADE IN LINCOLNSHIRE (OCTOBER)

Act II youth theatre company will perform their production of Maskerade in October.

When: 17th October 2015
Venue: South Holland Centre, 23 Market Place, Spalding, Lincs PE11 1SS
Time: matinee 2.30pm, evening show 7.30pm
Tickets: £9.50 (£8 for under-16s, over-60s, and disabled persons with companion; £7 per person for groups of 10+). To purchase tickets online, go to http://purchase.tickets.com/buy/TicketPurchase – select October and then scroll down to the appropriate date and time and click on the Buy Tickets button. Alternatively, ring the Box Office on 01775 764777. There is a £1.50 transaction fee for booking up to 9 tickets online

http://www.southhollandcentre.co.uk/whats-on/view/maskerade

http://www.act2online.co.uk/

7.7 NEW: MORT IN CHORLTON-CUM-HARDY, MANCHESTER (OCTOBER)

Chorlton Players will be performing Mort next month.

When: Thurs. 22nd October – Sat. 24th October 2015
Venue: St Werburgh's Parish Hall, St Werburgh's Rd, Chorlton-cum-Hardy, M21 0TL
Time: 7:30pm
Tickets: £6 (£4 concessions). To purchase online, go to http://chorltonplayers.com/?page_id=33

"Online ticket sales should normally account for 60% of the available seating in the hall. The rest are sold at the hall when the doors open (normally 7.00pm unless otherwise stated). Buying tickets online is not compulsory but a pre-booked ticket automatically reserves a seat. However, this expires when the show starts, and your seats will be re-allocated to box office sales. Please arrive in good time for the show. Also, please try to arrive as a full booked party, in order to process your online booking... The hall has a wooden floor, so quiet shoes would be appreciated!"

http://chorltonplayers.com/

7.8 NEW: MAKING MONEY IN BASILDON (NOVEMBER)

The Thalian Theatre Group are back in November with a new Discworld production: Making Money!

When: Thurs. 12th – Sat. 14th November 2015
Venue: Mirren Studio, Towngate Theatre, St Martin's Square, Basildon, Essex SS14 1DL.
Time: 8pm
Tickets: £10 (£8.50 concessions), with a booking fee of £1. To purchase online, go to http://thaliantheatregroup.wix.com/thalian nd click on the tickets image. To reserve tickets by phone, ring 01268 417854. A percentage of ticket sales will be donated to Alzheimer's Research UK.

Box Office telephone: 01268 465 465.

http://thaliantheatregroup.wix.com/thalian
www.facebook.com/ThalianTheatreGroup/info?tab=page_info

www.towngatetheatre.co.uk/

7.9 NEW: WYRD SISTERS IN CHARLTON, LONDON (OCTOBER)

The Alexandra Players will present their production of Wyrd Sisters in late October.

When: 28th–31st October 2015
Venue: Alexandra Hall, Bramshot Avenue, Charlton, London SE7
Time: 8pm (Wednesday 28th, Thursday 29th, Friday 30th; 7pm (Saturday 31st)
Tickets: TBA

http://alexandraplayers.org.uk/

7.10 NEW: WYRD SISTERS IN HEXHAM (NOVEMBER)

When: 26th – 28th November 2015
Venue: Queen's Hall Arts Centre, Beaumont Street, Hexham, Northumberland, NE46 3LS
Time: 7:30pm all shows
Tickets: £10 (£9 concessions; £7 under 18s). Box office: 01434 652477

http://www.queenshalltheatreclub.co.uk/
http://www.queenshall.co.uk/

7.11 NEW: WYRD SISTERS IN ARKANSAS (OCTOBER)

Discworld comes to Arkansas next month when the Twin Lakes Playhouse presents Wyrd Sisters!

"In the spooky castle on the top of the hill King Verence I has just been bumped off by his scheming cousin Duke Felmet, and the kingdom is in peril. Enter three wildly eccentric witches, the understandably miffed ghost of the former king, a caravan full of travelling players, and the long-lost heir to Lancre's throne, and what follows fits quite neatly into the genre of Epic Dramatic Slapstick Thriller Romantic Comedy."

When: Oct. 9-11 2015
Venue: Twin Lakes Playhouse, 600 West Sixth Street, Mountain Home, AR 72653
Time:
Tickets: $11 in advance, $13 at the door. To book, ring 424-0444.

http://twinlakesplayhouse.org/

7.12 REVIEWS: NIGHT WATCH IN CARDIFF

By Adam Walker on Wales Online:

"Sword fights, a full-scale city riot and time travel. No, it's not Doctor Who but the latest Terry Pratchett play by Cardiff's Monstrous Productions. This time it was Night Watch and I must admit, I was slightly worried about this play. You see, I've seen the last two Pratchett plays by Monstrous Productions, Witches Abroad and Wyrd Sisters , and I loved them. But any Pratchett fan knows there are no witches in Night Watch... Jes Hynes who completely steals the show as Sam. He IS Sam Vines, and as a life-long fan of Pratchett and the Discworld, I don't say that lightly. This is Monstrous' sixth Pratchett play and they know what they're doing, transforming a stage with just a few props and some lighting and sound effects into the Discworld... Night Watch felt a lot larger in scale than Monstrous' previous plays but they know Pratchett, they know Discworld, and they do an amazing job bringing it to life."

http://bit.ly/1i06Cvt

By DeadAngelLover22 on The Sprout:

"Most of the play was down to your imagination. They used basic props and the costumes were stunning, the stage was right out to even the crowd and the cast walked through the crowd to get onto the stage a few times. It was so well done – most of the time you just thought 'Where did they come from?' But, as the cast walked right up to you, it made it so much more personal, and I loved that because you felt like you were an onlooker but also somewhat part of the play..."

http://thesprout.co.uk/en/news/review-nighttch-the-gate/19495.html

By the always-entertaining twin bloggers known collectively as CL Raven:

"The complicated time travel was helpfully explained by Lu-Tze, a history monk, played by Howard Dickens. Craig Harper was great as young Sam Vimes. He played Mort in, well, Mort, so it was good to see him back in a leading role. He did well to capture how young Sam is in the book – nervy, eager to impress and wanting to do the right thing. Jez Hynes was outstanding as older Sam Vimes/John Keel and the part where he recited his Night Watch contract, word perfect, with all the punctuation, got a well deserved applause. Tyron Sullivan was fantastic as the villainous Carcer. A lot of actors when playing villains, make them too hammy, but he successfully avoided that and made Carcer into the type of bad guy you want to hate, but can't help liking, because he portrayed him so well. The way Heath Ledger was as the Joker. The scenes with Carcer and Vimes together were amazing. They were the perfect pairing. And full applause to their final fight scene. They completely threw themselves into it. We could easily believe it was actually Vimes and Carcer fighting in real life... In keeping with Pratchett's novels, the humour was brilliant too. Los Shanahan as Dr Lawn had some great, funny lines, and Matthew Hitchman as Fred Colon managed to make the audience laugh just by waving a flag. We laughed the whole time he had it..."

https://clraven.wordpress.com/2015/09/10/night-watch/

7.13 REVIEWS: SOUL MUSIC IN WELLINGTON

By Gill Paltridge for Around Wellington:

"Wellington Theatre Company's Rebecca Beard and Mike Leach have chosen to adapt their own version of 'Soul Music' for the stage and have injected their personal Discworld enthusiasm into the script, preserving Pratchett's comic flair in puns, gags and witty satire... Ian Jones has already excelled in recent productions in the town. As Imp y Celyn he conveys wide-eyed, earnest sincerity and the role's youthful glee when the magic guitar adopts him. Kirk Shepherd, whilst not exactly dwarfish, is appropriately droll as Glod Glodsson, his deadpan delivery suited to the role. Rob Spurway as the giant Troll Lias Bluestone delivers the necessary slow-witted cloddishness and lumpen enthusiasm. As the The Band With Rocks In their performances are central to the drama. From a long cast-list Maat Ward as CMOT Dibbler is outstanding. His self-serving entrepreneurial glee is a delight and his character's eager sniffing-out of an opportunity is physically well-defined. Colin Marshall's Albert, Death's PA, has an appropriate indolent detachment in spotting his master's defects. Dawn Morton and Hannah Green appear as members of the City Watch – complete with Vikings' helmets and chainmail – then individually as beggar Foul Ole Ron and pub landlady Hibiscus Dunelm, delivering confident, well-observed performances... An outstanding feature of this production is Penny Bradnum's costuming. She has managed to fill the stage with delightful inventiveness creating a galaxy of very weird wizards, grungy heavy metallers and odd schoolgirls – one with a beard. Pratchett would approve of the visual oddity assembled..."

http://www.aroundwellington.co.uk/soul-music-brings-discworld-to-town/

By AC on The Fine Times Recorder:

"Rebecca Beard's long-gestated project to bring her favourite 'Discworld' book into live performance, proves that 'Soul Music,' apparently neglected by the many adapters of Pratchett's literary genius, was long over-due to make its stage debut. The many-peopled Wellington Theatre Company enthusiastically create the bizarre multi-roles of constables, schoolgirls, musicians, an impresario, academics, aristocrats, plus a plethora of relatives & citizens of various citadels that have arisen on 'Discworld.'... Underpinning the success of the performance are the talents of designer & operators of precise lighting & sound effects, Steve Bradnum assisted by Kit Sells. Imaginative costumes were selected & perfectly fitted by Nancy Powell-Brace & Penny Bradnum; props searched out by Mary Lewis & puppets made by Eve Male, all contributing to a team whose efforts are worthy of praise & a credit to the show's creator, Rebecca Beard..."

www.theftr.co.uk/soul-music-wellington-theatre-co-at-wellington-arts-centre/

7.14 REVIEW: MORT IN HASTINGS

The Stables Youth Theatre production, reviewed by Martin Robinson:

"Terry Pratchett was new to me and I expected humour, a sideways look at life and entertainment, despite the funereal publicity for Mort and the author's recent sad demise. My expectations were fulfilled... Costumes were spot on, props effective and the set promised great things. Lighting and sound were ambitious and added to the performance and the many cogs in the machine all meshed and ran true. The large number of female players demonstrated an equality in the arts missing in some of the more established companies and notable emerging talents included Emily Cooper as Ysabell and Lily Sparrow as Princess Keli..."

http://bit.ly/1OpncBJ

7.15 REVIEW: WYRD SISTERS IN EXETER

By Daniel Mumby in the Exeter Express and Echo:

"One of the great pleasures of watching amateur dramatics is getting to see a group develop and refine its craft over a string of productions. While faces occasionally change and the chosen material often greatly varies, there is always the feeling of incremental progress, raising a bar that has already been set very high. I felt this way when I sat in the Broadclyst Victory Hall, watching the village's theatre group tackle Terry Pratchett's Wyrd Sisters with affection and aplomb. Having come in with little to no knowledge of Pratchett's oeuvre, I came away thoroughly entertained and curious to examine more of his work... The cast are generally excellent, with the three principle witches each excelling in their own way. Lin Alderman is the stand-out as Nanny Ogg, playing up the rustic, buffoonish qualities of the character while also doing well in the more dead-pan moments in the stocks. Alison Harris steps ably into Sheila Hancock's shoes as Granny Weatherwax, whose amusing ignorance of the theatre is counterpointed by her real-world resourcefulness. Rachel Cunningham completes the set as the naive but well-meaning Magrat Garlick, who tries so hard to be accepted.. This was a highly entertaining production which confirms our suspicions that Broadclyst Theatre Group is continuing to grow in stature..."

http://bit.ly/1FHvSw3

7.16 THE SHAKESPEARE CODEX: WORLD PREMIERE IN ABINGDON (APRIL 2016)

Stephen Briggs and the Studio Theatre Club will present, for the first time ever on Roundworld, a very special Discworld play... The Shakespeare Codex!

"Discworld's 'stars' have to stop the elves taking over our world, make Shakespeare write A Midsummer Night's Dream ... and ensure the potato is discovered! Featuring Ridcully, Rincewind, Granny Weatherwax, Angua, Vetinari, Shakespeare, Queen Elizabeth I ... & the Earl of Oxford. Based loosely on The Science of Discworld II: the Globe, Lords & Ladies, and A Midsummer Night's Dream. Staged on 6 to 9 April 2016 (both Terry's and Shakespeare's birth month).

"Tickets will be on general sale from 1 January 2016. We're expecting quite a lot of interest in this show, so *early booking* (particularly for the weekend performances) is recommended. More news on the show here, as it happens. At the moment, we plan to stage the show for four evening performances, plus a matinee on the Saturday. Tickets will be £10.00 (Wed, Thu, Fri) and £11.00 (Sat mat and evening). Block booking discounts will be available for the Wed and Thu performances."

http://www.shakespearecodex.co.uk/

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08) DISCWORLD CONVENTION NEWS

8.1 GERMAN DISCWORLD CONVENTION NEWS

The 2015 German Discworld convention (Scheibenwelt) went well. There are some convention photos by Robert Flach at http://on.fb.me/1JeeUpj (requires Facebook membership). Here be a selection that can be seen by those of us who refuse to use Facebook. Includes a Howondaland hermit elephant!

http://bit.ly/1gw1n5v
http://on.fb.me/1NH50nR
http://bit.ly/1P5SaNn
http://bit.ly/1QKoFBG

The next Scheibenwelt convention will be from 18th – 21st May 2017, once again at Castle Ludwigstein.

8.2 IDWCON NEWS

A slight change in the IDWCon guests line-up:

"Watch spokesperson Captain Shivers read out a prepared statement earlier today: 'It is with great regret that we announce that the learned Dr. Jack Cohen will be unable to attend the imminent Watch Open Weekend,' she stated. She strongly denied any rumours that his absence was caused by dangerous experiments gone awry, instead explaining that 'while he is in good health, he is no longer in a position to handle the various demands of a convention, not to mention air travel.' She went on to say that 'while Jack and his fascinating lectures will be greatly missed at the Convention, we at the Watch will endeavour to still have a good time without him, thanks to our dazzling array of other guests.' Dr Cohen ('Rich in years, thank you so very much') co-authored the Science of Discworld books along with Ian Stewart and Sir Terry, in between his regular day job of being a highly distinguished academic and lecturer."

Guests Bernard Pearson,Colin Smythe, Jacqueline Simpson, Reb Voyce, Ian Mitchell, and Dave and Leo of Backspindle Games are still good to go.

The Third Irish Discworld Convention will take place at the Cork International Hotel on the 2nd, 3rd, 4th and 5th of October 2015. Ticket prices are €50 for a full attending member or €40 for a Concession membership. Membership entitles each ticket holder to entry to all of the events at the Convention (with the exception of the Banquet Dinner, which is paid for separately). For more details, and to purchase, go to:

http://bit.ly/1QGbUr8

[Editor's note: the Gala Dinner is already sold out]

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09) DISCWORLD ARTS AND CRAFTS NEWS

9.1 DISCWORLD EMPORIUM UPDATES

Wossname wishes Bernard Pearson, the Cunning Artificer, a slightly belated happy birthday!

"It's been almost two weeks since the publication of The Shepherd's Crown, and what a tale it is too, littered with classic Pratchett-isms; punes, footnotes 'an all, and exploring the light and shade of humanity in his inimitable fashion. Unsurprising perhaps, but no less meaningful, Professor Sir Terry Pratchett OBE Blackboard Monitor achieved his 10th number one in the UK book charts with his 41st and final Discworld novel – a final Hurrah and 'mind how you go' from our beloved author in a manner most fitting – in words, on pages, bound in a book. We'd like to extend our gratitude to everyone who has dropped in to the Emporium whether in person, or virtually, to buy the book or just to say hello. The Emporium has received a tremendous amount of support, and our floorspace is still awash with mailbags on a daily basis! We hope everyone's orders are arriving in fine fettle and thank you all for your kind custom."

To read this announcement, with accompanying iconographs, go to http://bit.ly/1K9OGIk

"Out 22nd October, The Compleat Discworld Atlas is available for pre-order at-las(t)! Your Compleat guide to the geography and topography of Discworld, The Compleat Discworld Atlas is a wonderously witty travel guide brought to you by Ankh-Morpork's esteemed Guild of Trespassers, with sumptuous illustrations and comprehensive gazetteer, all accompanied by a giant double-sided map! The Compleat Discworld Atlas is our final collaboration with Sir Terry Pratchett. A project 3 years in the making, this new guide to the extraordinary world he created was completed before his death in March 2015. To honour this auspicious publication each copy from the Emporium includes a souvenir travel poster as a gift from us!"

The Compleat Discworld Atlas is priced at £25.00. Add £3.50 for UK delivery, £7 for rest of Europe delivery, or £10 for Rest of World delivery. For more information, and to order, go to:

http://www.discworldemporium.com/Compleat-Discworld-Atlas

And then there's the Hanging Baskets of Muntab stamp sheet:

"This cultural issue from the Ankh-Morpork Post Office celebrates the horticultural crowning glory of Muntab's impenetrable forest border defence. These centuries-old hanging guardposts were constructed during the height of the spice trade, and are nowadays maintained by wandering tribes of cannibalistic pygmies. Each minisheet consists of six stamps measuring 35 x 38mm, and is accompanied by a presentation postcard."

The Hanging Baskets of Muntab minisheet is priced at £5.00. For more information, and to order, go to:

http://bit.ly/1FTA9fU

...and the Krull one flot stamp:

"Situated on the edge of the world with a promotory overlooking the rim, the island of Krull is Discworld's unrivalled center of astrozoology. although due to a 'derailment' by Rincewind and Twoflower in The Colour of Magic it remains unclear whether there have been any advances in determining the sex of Great A'tuin. This regional issue features the Potent Voyager, Krull's celebrated bronze astro-exploratory vessel and the final creation of Goldeneyes Silverhands Dactylos, Discworld's father of invention and ingenuity.

"Spot the sport! One stamp on every sheet contains a 'deliberate' mistake or variation - only included on whole sheets or in lucky LBEs. Stamp measures 25 x 36mm, Sheet measures 160 x 282."

The Krull one flot stamp is priced at £0.35 for a single stamp and £12.25 for a sheet of 35 stamps. For more information, and to order, go to:

http://bit.ly/1jmcsrT

"The Krull One Flot is also available in the latest Little Brown Envelope edition. Each 'LBE' includes a lucky dip assortment of Discworld Stamps along with sports and rarities waiting to be found in lucky envelopes. The latest edition Little Brown Envelope, a 'lucky-dip' assortment of Discworld stamps with a chance of sports and rarities!
To celebrate the forthcoming release of The Compleat Discworld Atlas each envelope also contains a brand new regional issue from Krull, Discworld's unrivalled center of astrozoology. The cosmic One Flot stamp features the Potent Voyager, Krull's celebrated bronze astro-exploratory vessel and the final creation of Goldeneyes Silverhands Dactylos, Discworld's father of invention and ingenuity. This charming issue is also available to collect singly or as whole sheets. A generous splash of sports and LBE Exclusives, such as the Blue Triangle and Dead Letter Label have been distributed throughout the edition."

The Somewhere Over the Rimbow LBE is priced at £5. For more information, and to order, go to:

http://www.discworldemporium.com/rimbow-lbe

...and don't forget to further your education with a degree from the UU. It's magic:

"Graduate from Discworld's most spellbinding educational establishment with a masters degree from the Unseen University! Choose from six subjects and amaze your peers with evidence of your thaumaturgic proficiency – a magical gift for any Terry Pratchett devotee or aspiring wizard! Each set includes a suitably sumptuous certificate for your subject of choice and embossed with an octarine 'seal', a Graduate Declaration form to ensure that alumni leave Ankh-Morpork's foremost seat of learning with their education and university apparatus in a satisfactory state, and a free double-sided Bronze* Octogram keychain! ++ Certificates will be provided blank for you to personalise at home, but if you would prefer us to do it for you we can hand sign in our best handwriting – please provide the name/s of the recipients in the comments box during checkout ++ Measurements: Certificates 298 x 390mm, key chains 40mm diameter, declarations 105 x 300mm."

The Unseen University Graduation Set is priced at £12.50. For more information, and to order, go to:

http://www.discworldemporium.com/unseen-university-diploma

...and you might also fancy an official UU student notebook:

"Aspiring wizards would be unwise to venture onto campus without their Unseen University student notebook - a boon to any thaumaturgical scholar! Within this stout and sturdy educational companion is contained such important information as dining hours, university customs and notes on wizardly conduct, along with 50 plain pages for your spells, jottings and rude doodles. Sketchbook-quality 190gsm off-white paper made from 100% real trees. Measures 105 x 147mm."

The Unseen University Student Notebook is priced at £5.00. For more information, and to order, go to:

http://bit.ly/1V2xg3j

Last but certainly not least, the small but perfectly formed UU Coat of Arms wall boss:

"Official insignia from one of Discworld's greatest institutions. Finished in old wood and sculpted to achieve an ancient, hand carved appearance. Proudly display your academic prowess and understanding of higher magic with this elegant Unseen University crest. Features a wizard's hat crossing an open book emblazoned with the UU motto; Nunc Id Vides, Nunc Ne Vides (now you see it, now you don't). Usually to earn this relief you must have undergone at least 7 courses at Unseen University, not including the cheese board. Pre-drilled and produced in hard wearing resin, these handsome pieces are suitable for both home and garden. Measures approximately 95x80mm."

The UU Coat of Arms Wall Boss is priced at £7.50. For more information, and to order, go to:

http://www.discworldemporium.com/BackToSchool?product_id=78

9.2 DISCWORLD.COM UPDATES

Those beautiful framed sepia Paul Kidby prints are back!

"The sepia frames are back in stock and we've simplified the range to feature our most popular images. They now come in an attractive oak frame and are mounted to showcase Terry's signature hologram, showing in the bottom right corner. We think they look great and will make an excellent addition to any collection!"

Available prints include The Librarian, Nanny Ogg with Greebo, Greebo himself, Rincewind with The Luggage, the "unusual suspects" (A-M City Watch portrait), and Great A'Tuin, all as featured in the classic series of Kidby greeting cards some years ago. Each framed print is priced at £35 and measures 285mm x 335mm.

For more information, and to order, go to:

http://discworld.com/products/framed-sepia-prints/

Or you could greet the day with some Klatchian coffee (or the Roundworld equivalent) in a Discworld mug:

"A selection of mugs featuring some of your favourite Discworld characters. Our sublimation ceramic mugs are manufactured with a dishwasher safe premium coating. Bright white in colour and with a high gloss finish, the coated ceramic mug is produced from superior quality heavy weight ceramic and has a super hard coating. Dishwasher resistant up to 800 wash cycles at 45°C. The mugs measure 80mm diameter x 90mm high."

There is a large selection available – Feeglespotting, Rob Anybody Mac Feegle, Death ("There's no justice, there's just me"), Wyrd Sisters ("When shall we three meet again? Well, I can do next Tuesday"), the Sunshine Sanctuary for Sick Dragons, Rincewind ("Luck is my middle name. Mind you, my first name is bad"), Greebo ("To Nanny Ogg he was merely a larger version of the little fluffy kitten he had once been. To everyone else he was a scarred ball of inventive malignancy"), Panic and Freak Out (channelling the Keep Calm series and featuring a running Rincewind), and the City Watch (by cartoonist Ray Friesen).

Each mug is priced at £8.00. For more information, and to order, go to:

http://discworld.com/products/mugs/

Also back in stock: Tiffany's White Horse pendant

"This is an absolutely stunning piece of sterling silver jewellery and is a faithful reproduction of the pendant worn by Tiffany Aching in A Hat Full of Sky. This piece is based on Paul Kidby's original design. The horse measures 55[sic] tail to head, chain 18 inches. Designed exclusively for Discworld.com by Tom Lynall." [Editor's note: we're pretty sure that should be 55mm. Surely not the same size at the real White Horse of the Chalk, at any rate!]

Tiffany's White Horse pendant is priced at £45. For more information, and to order, go to:

http://bit.ly/1QShI1y

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10) DISCWORLD MEETING GROUPS NEWS: UPDATES AND REMINDERS

The Broken Drummers, "London's Premier Unofficially Official Discworld Group" (motto "Nil percussio est"), meets next on Monday 5th October 2015 at the Monkey Puzzle, 30 Southwick Street, London, W2 1JQ. For more information, go to http://brokendrummers.org/ or email BrokenDrummers@gmail.com or nicholls.helen@yahoo.co.uk

*

Canberra, Australia has a new Discworld fan group, Drumknott's Irregulars! "We are a newly established Terry Pratchett & Discworld social group in Canberra called 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 all 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."

*

There is a new public Facebook meeting group, "The Gathering of the Loonies (Wincanton chapter)": "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. Next event Loonies Christmas Party. Same weekend as Hogswatch would have been. ie 27/28/29 November."

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. Our recent 'Murder In Morpork' mystery party was a great night out. With 26 people attending, we had 24 suspects, our special guest – Vetinari, and one dead mime! It was a fun night of food and murder and we are planning another Murder in December so stay tuned. We also attend opening night at Brisbane Arts Theatre's Discworld plays."
The Partisans currently have about 100 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. For more information on their upcoming activities, go to www.cityofsmallgods.org.au

"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."

Upcoming events include:
Con-Centric Games, Burnside Community Centre (Sep 18-20
Monthly Dinner and Games, TBA (Sep 23 or 24)
Costume Bowling – Talk Like a Pirate Day (Sep 26)
Board Games Day at La Scala Cafe, 169 Unley Road, Unley (Oct 4)

Also, City of Small Gods will be holding a special quiz night in October: "Test your knowledge on all things Science Fiction and Fantasy – books, movies, TV, comics, games and more! A dragon's hoard of prizes including best costume!"
UPDATE: ALL TABLES HAVE NOW BEEN BOOKED! If you would like to be added to a waiting list, or be contacted when we announce next year's quiz, please contact us! Part proceeds of the quiz night will be donated to the Alzheimer's Australia Dementia Research Foundation.

For more info, go to http://ausdwcon.org/fan-clubs/adelaide/quiz/

*

The Broken Vectis Drummers meet next on Thursday 1st October 2015 (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 2nd October 2015 (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 but is now looking to take in some new blood (presumably not in the non-reformed Uberwald manner). 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 5th October 2015 at 6.30pm (probably) 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 5th October 2015 (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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11) DISCWORLD GAMES NEWS

11.1 DISCWORLD MUD, AN OLDIE BUT GOODIE

On gamer website Rock Paper Shotgun, a long and lovin‌g look at the Discworld MUD:

"While not really talked about any more, many MUDs do still tick along. Skotos has been running a set of commercial ones since 1999, and you can find lots of others on sites like this one. Probably best not to search for 'MUD play' though, that'll give you very different responses. Generally, active modern MUDs have very small but devoted communities that are generally open to new players, but expect them to respect rules when it comes to things like roleplaying characters and not, for instance, just grabbing a sword and trying to kill everything. Not that this will usually work anyway, as a new player will get splattered faster than an annoying fly. It's worth spending some time reading the rules and getting an idea for what each is trying to offer before jumping in.

"On the one hand, the Discworld MUD is easy to get started in. There's a lengthy, not-very Discworldy tutorial at the start, which you really, absolutely, no-kidding need to follow if you've never played one of these games before. At the same time though... Somewhat inevitably, the scale of it means you're not likely to bump into many people by accident. At the time of writing, there were only about 70 players online. That's not a huge problem though, thanks to the very active NPCs. If a torch goes out in one of the guilds, someone will be along shortly to relight it. Each guild and area has its own set of characters, reacting and responding to what you do. In Genua for instance, the people get annoyed with you for crimes like tomb raiding or sitting on the wrong benches. Elsewhere, singing the Hedgehog Song can be a broken-leg worthy offence (as well as a weapon against characters without earmuffs). You'll also find a lot of familiar faces while exploring, and achievements for doing so – tracking down all the Cut-Me-Own-Throat-Dibbler variants in the different cities for instance. Quests too, if you're into that kind of thing, you helpful or avaricious soul, you... the main wiki is excellent, with guides to all of the content and useful extras like the Accessibility Guides that focus on navigating and finding key landmarks. It's also possible to call up on your fairy godmother for assistance at any time, who will warp you back to your starting location (the Mended Drum in Ankh-Morpork) or return you to life if you die and can't find any priests around. In one of the biggest deviations from standard Discworld lore, resurrection is easily had (and Death a bit of a git, honestly), but it's not something you want to do on a regular basis. As well as costing a lot of character progress, past a certain point you have to buy lives and will die for real if you run out...

Even with a wiki, and some handy features like being able to see an ASCII map of each area, getting started isn't easy. Discworld MUD offers a vast amount of freedom and flavour, but you're often left fighting against that and the parser to get things done. This isn't a criticism so much as a casual warning; it's a game that expects you to type exactly what it expects rather than one that will bend over backwards to get what you mean. In the Mended Drum for instance, there's a bulletin board. Type 'read bulletin board' and you'll get the message 'A bulletin board [40 notes] does not have anything written on it.' You have to type 'look at bulletin board' to read the content. This is a big reason why it's worth spending some time in the tutorial area, where the NPCs explain everything in great detail, even if it is a bit bland and not remotely Disc-y... If you're willing to deal with the kind of learning curve that would make Dark Souls cry, or simply feel like taking a poke around some familiar haunts in a way that none of the official games ever came close to, you really should check the Discworld MUD out. It's one of the best fan projects for anything that you'll find, and may it live until at least the robots rise and kill us all. Ideally longer, if they have good taste in fantasy..."

http://www.rockpapershotgun.com/2015/08/24/discworld-mud-game/

11.2 DISCWORLD FOR PC: ONE OF THE GOLDEN GREATS

On Digital Spy, Discworld (PC) is ranked 4th out of the "12 hardest games ever made":

"So, it turns out you use the butterfly with the lamppost to cause a thunderstorm in the future so you can steal the monk's robe. Why didn't we think of that? As anyone who played Discworld on PC in the 1990s will tell you, the above statement doesn't make any more sense in context, which is but one reason why Psygnosis' Terry Pratchett adaptation is one of the most illogical and difficult point-and-click adventures ever made."

An interesting read for old-school gamers!

http://bit.ly/1NLGp17

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12) TERRY PRATCHETT: GUILTY OF LITERATURE? WELL ACTUALLY, YES

Jonathan Jones, an arts critic for The Guardian newspaper, recently wrote a scathing dismissal of the works of Terry Pratchett in an op-ed column that even professional novelists deemed deliberate stir-the-pubic-up clickbait:

"It does not matter to me if Terry Pratchett's final novel is a worthy epitaph or not, or if he wanted it to be pulped by a steamroller. I have never read a single one of his books and I never plan to. Life's too short. No offence, but Pratchett is so low on my list of books to read before I die that I would have to live a million years before getting round to him. I did flick through a book by him in a shop, to see what the fuss is about, but the prose seemed very ordinary... Actual literature may be harder to get to grips with than a Discworld novel, but it is more worth the effort. By dissolving the difference between serious and light reading, our culture is justifying mental laziness and robbing readers of the true delights of ambitious fiction..."

http://bit.ly/1LNzdB5

Rebuttals include a piece titled "You Don't Know What It Is, Do You, Mister Jones?" by well-known author Christopher Priest:

"Recognizing writers in the present day who are likely to achieve long-term recognition as a classic author is a risky business. Popular success often comes about because of the public's unpredictable reaction, or a wish to find an undemanding read, or because of a response to perceived matters of the moment. Happenstance comes into it, and so does the luck of timing. Best-seller success is therefore usually ephemeral. Can anyone seriously suggest that the 'Grey' novels of E. L. James, the 'Twilight' novels of Stephenie Meyer, the nonsensical best-sellers by the likes of Dan Brown or Jeffrey Archer, are destined for anything but the dustbin of literary history? Who now reads, or even remembers, the author Hervey Allen? Or for that matter James Hilton, Dorothea Brande, Alexis Carrel, Franz Werfel, Munro Leaf? ...in their day their books were immense popular successes. Ephemerality has struck – posterity has eluded them... We are more likely to find literary posterity, or the possibility of it, in the genres. For instance, thirty years ago who would have guessed that Philip K. Dick would be seen, at least in the world of Hollywood studio films, as a paradigm of science fiction? Most of his novels were quickly written for commercial publishers, aimed at and read by a genre audience. But as a result of several hugely successful films, Dick's many routine SF books have returned to print, he is taught in universities and schools, and he is generally regarded as the finest modern SF writer. Yet in 1981, roughly at the time Blade Runner was being filmed, John Sutherland gave Dick no more than a passing mention...

"I would say that of all the writers I have ever known, or the books I have ever read, Terry Pratchett's seem to be a dead cert for long-term classic status... His work is written well – no matter what Jones says about 'very ordinary' prose, Terry Pratchett's novels are stylistically adept: good muscular prose, not mucked around with for effect (except sometimes!), enlivened by wit, sharp observation, a unique take on the world at large and whatever the subject of social satire might be for the time being, a brimming sense of fun and the ridiculous, and overall an approach to the reader that feels inclusive, a letting in on the joke, an amused welcome to the world he is writing about..."

http://bit.ly/1O5Tn6C

By Charlie Jane Anders on i09:

"Twilight by Stephenie Meyer probably won't be read 100 years from now, argues The Prestige author Christopher Priest. But Stephen King and J.K. Rowling have a decent shot at posterity... Priest's blog post is worth reading in its entirety — it's partly a meditation on what makes authors endure after their deaths, and Priest's own observations on why Stephen King is more likely than Dan Brown to be read by our descendants. Priest argues that although it's impossible to predict for sure what will make an author live on for decades after death, some mix of popularity and distinctive storytelling seems to be at play — and Priest says the modern literary novel is less likely to produce very many lasting classics. 'We are more likely to find literary posterity, or the possibility of it, in the genres.'..."

http://bit.ly/1LP68CD

By Pratik Kanjilal for The Indian Express:

"Assuredly, Discworld is literature. High literature, even. Writers with a light touch have the misfortune of being hugely popular in their lifetime but dismissed as insubstantial after the event. Few escape this fate, unless their work is not restricted to their times but to ideas of enduring interest. George Mikes and PG Wodehouse live on because they show what it means to be English. Even the English, and particularly the English, have no idea what makes them English, so these are useful clarifications... in the hands of Pratchett, parody rose to define what is human...

http://bit.ly/1iKKjuf

And the best is last – an excellent essay, "Terry Pratchett, Jane Austen, and the definition of literature", by Annie Coral Demosthenous, Honorary Research Fellow in European Languages and Studies at the University of Western Australia

"Last month in The Guardian, with a piece headlined Get Real. Terry Pratchett is not a Literary Genius, literary critic Jonathan Jones claimed Terry Pratchett's books should not be read, because they are not literature... Yet the definition of 'literature' is changeable, and inextricably linked with fashion. As the author Christopher Priest has pointed out, works now considered classics were not necessarily defined as high culture when they were written, and works considered literary when published do not always survive over time... So what is high culture? And what do we mean when we call something 'literary'? According to Jones, 'actual literature' is 'harder to get to grips with than a Discworld novel, but it is more worth the effort'... As this definition is not particularly helpful, let us consider some characteristics commonly considered 'literary': the elegant and adventurous use of language, engagement with themes of universal significance, inventiveness of style, defiance of genre classification... Pratchett seldom allows language to exist unchallenged; words are stretched and twisted by new and surprising contexts, opening the reader's eye to the arbitrary relation of signifier and signified, often eliciting surprised laughter... Pratchett's work is often underestimated because it is classified as 'genre fiction' rather than literary fiction. Yet Pratchett's relationship with genre is complex and adversarial. He does not reproduce genre stereotypes, he sets them up to be deconstructed, or at least affectionately mocked.
Reading Pratchett, like reading Austen, requires commitment, and a willingness to look under the surface. It's a shame Jonathan Jones was unable to do so before writing his follow-up article on Pratchett – for which he had, belatedly, read one book by the author – this past weekend.

http://bit.ly/1Opz1Yv

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13) IMAGES OF THE MONTH

Something fabulous! The cast of the Monstrous Productions theatre company, fresh from their triumphant run of Night Watch, recreate Paul Kidby's cover as a live tableau:
http://bit.ly/1MlBgMV

The Year of the Sneezing Panda, by hump_day:
http://bit.ly/1LEgHZ2

The unforgettable Mistress Weatherwax, as only Paul Kidby can draw her:
http://bit.ly/1EWIQva

Homage to Paul Kidby himself! Fanart by Alda-Rana:
http://bit.ly/1Jwnch8

Rob Wilkins and Stephen Briggs reading to the fans at the Waterstones Piccadilly Shepherd's Crown launch. From inside the stone gate to Fairyland, no less:
https://pbs.twimg.com/media/CNXkwFXWgAAf8if.jpg:large

Another photo of Rob and Stephen at Waterstones, smiling, by attendee Amy Simmonds:
http://bit.ly/1MTGazb

The streets of Ankh-Morpork, by Martin Baines:
https://pbs.twimg.com/media/CPB96xsWcAALDE4.jpg:large

...and Rob, several hours later, photographed by Stephen:
https://pbs.twimg.com/media/CNZMy1SWcAAMvzh.jpg

A fine turnout of costumed Discworld fans at the Leeds launch, by Jessica Wheatley:
http://bit.ly/1JrCrqh

Stephen Player's take on Nanny Ogg among the ballerinas, from Maskerade:
http://bit.ly/1NQTZ28

Marvellous sign from Waterstones Aberdeen's opening celebration for The Shepherd's Crown:
http://bit.ly/1JFB0WE

A fine cartoonish Nanny Ogg by Tatiks:
http://bit.ly/1NydJZB

Witches three – from the Broadclyst Theatre group's recent production of Wyrd Sisters:
http://bit.ly/1iIG3LH

Talented fanart doodler Amy P Simmonds' clever tribute to the passing of Sir Pterry:
https://pbs.twimg.com/media/COYxLxPWEAIoaX7.jpg

[Amy's Twitter account is https://twitter.com/InkaDoodleDo/ – well worth a look! – Ed.]

...and finally, a message from your Librarian, courtesy of Waterstones:
http://bit.ly/1JFB0WE

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

14) CLOSE

This may be one of the most amazing pieces of Discworld fan art ever created – an amazingly artistic, amazingly Nanny Ogg-like crocheted Nanny Ogg doll by Kim Lapsley! In addition to a wealth of photos, Kim's blogpost contains a blow-by-blow description of her process. Truly excellent:

http://kimlapsley.blogspot.com.au/2014/02/nanny-ogg.html

And on the subject of Discworld fan art, here be an unforgettable image of The Author on a wall in north Wales:

http://bit.ly/1Qt4J5v

"The 8ft mural honouring the author has appears [sic] on a council-owned wall in Buckley and makes reference to his battle with Alzheimer's. An artist dubbed the 'Flintshire Banksy' has paid tribute to one of the world's best-loved authors. The mysterious person, known as Random, has created a mural honouring the late Sir Terry Pratchett on a council-owned wall between the town council building and baths in Buckley. The 8ft artwork features a life-like head and shoulders portrait of the popular writer, as well as an image of a small dog, inspired by Pratchett's wonder dog Gaspode who appeared in seven of his novels...."

Read all about it in the Daily Post: http://bit.ly/1QTepai – and in The Leader, which offers a more in-depth look at Random's Pratchett tributes:

"Speaking to the Leader, Random said: 'I was asked if I would be willing to do another one after the Harry Patch creation last year. I decided to do one of Terry Pratchett, who is a favourite author of mine. I understand it has been received pretty well but because of the nature of the way I work it is difficult to get much one-on-one feedback.' The mural took Random about four-and-a-half hours to produce before it was mounted over the weekend. Having produced a similar Terry Pratchett mural at Europe's biggest street art festival, 'Upfest' in Bristol, earlier this year, Random opted to use a different quote this time around to signify the author's own struggle with Alzheimer's..."

http://bit.ly/1LDPyqX

And that's the lot for the moment, whew! Part 2 coming before Thursday...

– Annie Mac

ooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooo

The End. If you have any questions or requests, write: wossname-owner (at) pearwood (dot) info
wossname: (Anthill inside)
When: 28th–31st October 2015
Venue: Alexandra Hall, Bramshot Avenue, Charlton, London SE7
Time: 8pm (Wednesday 28th, Thursday 29th, Friday 30th); 7pm (Saturday 31st)
Tickets: TBA

http://alexandraplayers.org.uk/
wossname: (Anthill inside)
Fantastic new wall art tribute!

"The 8ft mural honouring the author has appears [sic] on a council-owned wall in Buckley and makes reference to his battle with Alzheimer's. An artist dubbed the 'Flintshire Banksy' has paid tribute to one of the world's best-loved authors. The mysterious person, known as Random, has created a mural honouring the late Sir Terry Pratchett on a council-owned wall between the town council building and baths in Buckley. The 8ft artwork features a life-like head and shoulders portrait of the popular writer, as well as an image of a small dog, inspired by Pratchett’s wonder dog Gaspode who appeared in seven of his novels...."




Read all about it in the Daily Post: http://bit.ly/1QTepai -- and in The Leader, which offers a more in-depth look at Random's Pratchett tributes:

"Speaking to the Leader, Random said: 'I was asked if I would be willing to do another one after the Harry Patch creation last year. I decided to do one of Terry Pratchett, who is a favourite author of mine. I understand it has been received pretty well but because of the nature of the way I work it is difficult to get much one-on-one feedback.' The mural took Random about four-and-a-half hours to produce before it was mounted over the weekend. Having produced a similar Terry Pratchett mural at Europe’s biggest street art festival, 'Upfest' in Bristol, earlier this year, Random opted to use a different quote this time around to signify the author’s own struggle with Alzheimer's..."

http://bit.ly/1LDPyqX
wossname: Clacks rendering of SPEAK HIS NAME to keep Pratchett on the Overhead (Default)
Wossname
Newsletter of the Klatchian Foreign Legion
September 2014 (Volume 17, Issue 9, Post 3)

********************************************************************
WOSSNAME is a free publication offering news, reviews, and all the other stuff-that-fits pertaining to the works and activities 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, Wolfiekins
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) MORE QUOTES OF THE MONTH
02) LETTER FROM YOUR EDITOR
03) A SLIP OF THE KEYBOARD: NEWS AND REVIEWS
04) DISCWORLD PLAYS NEWS
05) DISCWORLD ARTS AND CRAFTS NEWS
06) ROUNDWORLD TALES
07) MORE IMAGES
08) AROUND THE BLOGOSPHERE
09) CLOSE

oooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooo

01) THE OTHER QUOTES OF THE MONTH

"As Terry walks into the darkness much too soon, I find myself raging too: at the injustice that deprives us of – what? Another twenty or thirty books? Another shelf-full of ideas and glorious phrases and old friends and new, of stories in which people do what they really do do best, which is use their heads to get themselves out of the trouble they got into by not thinking? Another book or two like this, of journalism and agitprop and even the occasional introduction? But truly, the loss of these things does not anger me as it should. It saddens me, but I, who have seen some of them being built close up, understand that any Terry Pratchett book is a small miracle, and we already have more than might be reasonable, and it does not behoove any of us to be greedy..."

– Neil Gaiman, in his preface to A Slip of the Keyboard

"All authors must occasionally wonder where the magic comes from, and sometimes I wonder where the strength of Daphne came from, and about the source of Mau's almost incoherent rage. Where ever their origins, I believe that Nation is the best book I have ever written or will write."

– Terry Pratchett, from A Slip of the Keyboard (Doubleday hardcover, page 141)

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

02) A LETTER FROM YOUR EDITOR

Hello out there, from the very back end of September! I only just got my copy of A Slip of the Keyboard, and my replacement copy of Dragons at Crumbling Castle arrived last night (the first one went missing in the post – no, really), I've given a shortish review of the former and no review of the latter until next issue... because when I jokingly said to a friend last night, "No sleep till Wednesday," it turned out to be prophetic, and as it's now nearing the last hours of the last day of the month, I think I'd better finish off before I get too cross-eyed.

To those of you who wrote to say that the new non-Yahoo Wossname arrived without problem and looks fine and perfectly formatted, many thanks. So far no one has written to complain; one hopes that's a good sign!

A wee reminder that Mrs Bradshaw's to Travelling Upon the Ankh-Morpork and Sto Plains Hygienic Railway Handbook will be published in Roundworld next month (9th October):

"Authorised by Mr Lipwig of the Ankh-Morpork and Sto Plains Hygienic Railway himself, Mrs Georgina Bradshaw's invaluable guide to the destinations and diversions of the railway deserves a place in the luggage of any traveller, or indeed armchair traveller, upon the Disc... Fully illustrated and replete with useful titbits, Mrs Bradshaw's Handbook offers a view of the Sto Plains like no other." But I am leaving out the previous pre-order link and will think long and hard before ever again offering links to Amazon; instead, I'll recommend that those of you who order books from the internet consider using smaller or more independent online booksellers[1], and will instead post a link to the keynote address by David Mitchell[2] at last week's Booksellers Association conference. I've been increasingly horrified by Amazon for some time now, so this speech didn't convince me, but perhaps it may help to convince someone else:

http://tinyurl.com/k7rkfo9

In a lighter vein, here be some hedgehogs who can never be *coloured* at all. Aww!

http://www.bbc.com/news/uk-england-tyne-29349085

Also, for a small delight or enormous wonderfulness, have a look at Wee Mad Arthur on a pigeon, at the bottom of the Ookbench (item 8, third link).

And now for all the news that fits...

– Annie Mac, Editor

[1] Or indeed, the like of Sir Pterry's own independent bookshop which, as you'll recall, links to actual brick-and-mortar booksellers: https://www.myindependentbookshop.co.uk/TerryPratchett

[2] The funny one. Though he, too, is a published author


THE REST OF THIS ISSUE IS UNDER THE CUT. CLICK HERE TO READ! )
wossname: Clacks rendering of SPEAK HIS NAME to keep Pratchett on the Overhead (Default)
Wossname
Newsletter of the Klatchian Foreign Legion
September 2014 (Volume 17, Issue 9, Post 2)

********************************************************************
WOSSNAME is a free publication offering news, reviews, and all the other stuff-that-fits pertaining to the works and activities 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, Wolfiekins
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) "DRAGONS AT CRUMBLING CASTLE" NEWS
04) "GOOD OMENS" – ON THE WIRELESS!
05) DISCWORLD PLAYS NEWS
06) DISCWORLD CONVENTION NEWS
07) DISCWORLD MEETING GROUPS NEWS
08) IMAGES OF THE MONTH
09) CLOSE

oooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooo

01) QUOTE OF THE MONTH

"Hooray! @terryandrob's DRAGONS AT CRUMBLING CASTLE is #1 on the UK children's charts! Congrats to all, inc. Mark Beech & @K_L_Armstrong!"

– Anne Hoppe, Pterry USA editor, on Twitter

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

02) LETTER FROM YOUR EDITOR

Well, here we are...

Meet the new WOSSNAME, same as the old WOSSNAME – except that it's now called Wossname, it isn't a part of Yahoogroups, and each issue is more likely to land in your inbox un-truncated, un-doubled, and formatted in a more readable fashion.

This is my first time running a mailing list, so there may be a few technical teething problems (or not). If it's an "is" instead of an "or not", please be patient while we sort things out – unless you're a sysadmin with helpful suggestions. Then by all means do write to us. Just don't send a bill in the post...

The old WOSSNAME Yahoogroups site will remain open to all, as it contains the archives of many years' publications, but we won't post any new issues there apart from a monthly reminder of where each issue can be viewed on the web.

I'd like to take this opportunity to once again thank our many long-time readers for sticking with us through the years – over fifteen of 'em now! – and to welcome newer readers, and additional thanks to those of you who have been writing letters of appreciation and encouragement to Wossname in general and your Editor in particular.

Now then, here be an urgent announcement about a chance to get a FREE!COPY! of A Slip of the Keyboard, from the official Terry Pratchett Books website:

"It's not long now until Sir Terry's collection of non-fiction, which spans his entire career, is out in bookshops nationwide. With a special foreword from Neil Gaiman too, we're betting you can't wait to get your hands on a copy. To celebrate the publication of A Slip of the Keyboard, we're giving away copies to 20 lucky winners! To enter, all you have to do is register your details on the shiny new newsletter form before Wednesday 24th September, and make sure you tick the box for our Suvudu newsletter too for more Fantasy & Sci-Fi book news and competitions."

And here is the link to click on to register: http://tinyurl.com/lguxc47

Remember, there are only a couple of days left, so get clicking!

This issue being a fairly short one, there will be a further issue before the end of September. Stand by... and don't touch that dial... but before we go onwards and, well, more onwards, here's a heartening little note from theatre company (and bigtime Discworld fans) Monstrous Productions:

"Our January 2014 production of Mort raised over £2000, bringing our total to £5100 raised for Alzheimer's Research UK since we formed! Thank you to everyone who came to watch both Mort and Carpe Jugulum in June 2013, we couldn't do it without your support."

Well done! And be sure to check out all the info for their next production, which will be Wyrd Sisters, in November – that's item 5.2 below.

– Annie Mac, Editor

p.s. Special thanks go to reader Tamar for bringing some of the less obvious Yahoogroups issues to our attention!

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

03) "DRAGONS AT CRUMBLING CASTLE" NEWS

3.1 IN HIS OWN WORDS: THE STORY OF DRAGONS AT CRUMBLING CASTLE, BY SIR PTERRY

In The Guardian, a lovely piece by The Author himself about how and when he came to write the Dragons at Crumbling Castle stories:

"Focus on a planet revolving in space: Focus in on a small country in the northern hemisphere – Great Britain. Closer, closer... and on the western edge of London you can see the county of Buckinghamshire. Small villages and winding country roads. And if you could go back in time to the mid 1960s, you might spot a young lad on a motorbike coming down one such lane, notebook and pen in his jacket pocket. This is me. A junior reporter for the Bucks Free Press, sent out to cover stories on local events. If I was lucky, I would be going to something like a village fair – you know the kind of thing: men putting weasels down their trousers, people bobbing for frogs in a bucket, the odd cheese rolling too fast down a hill...

"It was a lot of fun back then. And somewhere in the middle of it I taught myself how to write by reading as many books as I could carry home from the library. So then I began writing stories of my own – stories for young readers that were published every week in the newspaper. The stories in this collection are a selection of those. There are dragons and wizards, councillors and mayors, an adventurous tortoise and a monster in a lake, along with plenty of pointy hats and a few magic spells (a few of which actually do what they are supposed to). Some of these early stories even spawned into my first novel, The Carpet People..."

To read the entire piece, go to:

http://tinyurl.com/lh6hhtf


3.2 A MULTIPLE CHOICE PTERRY QUIZ

Also in The Guardian, a charming quiz:

"Think you know your Discworld from your Dodger? Your rats from your Rincewind? Test yourself in our Terry Pratchett quiz"

Some samples of the questions:

Discworld stands atop a giant turtle. What is the turtle's name?

Donatello
Great T'Phon
Great A'Tuin
Tubul

Complete the quote from Lords and Ladies: 'In the beginning there was…'

'... a giant turtle.'
'... nothing, which exploded.'
'... only a small number of Discworld novels.'
'... a wizard named Rincewind.'

"Nunc Id Vides, Nunc Ne Vides" is the official Latin motto of the Unseen University. To which English phrase does the motto closest translate?

'Never tickle a sleeping dragon'
'No, no, you're doing it all wrong'
"Now you see it, now you don't"
'Eat a bit of pie'

Go on, have a look!

http://tinyurl.com/mrk8436

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

04) "GOOD OMENS" – ON THE WIRELESS!

"It's the end of the world – just not quite how we might be expecting it – but then this is Terry Pratchett and Neil Gaiman's version of Armageddon. BBC Radio 4 has today confirmed that the station will be collaborating with acclaimed authors Neil Gaiman and Terry Pratchett to create the first ever dramatisation of their co-penned cult-classic, Good Omens. The audio drama, which begins recording today in a secret London location, has a cast including Colin Morgan (Merlin, The Fall) as Newton Pulsifer, Josie Lawrence (Skins, EastEnders) as Agnes Nutter and Paterson Joseph (Peep Show, Green Wing) as Famine, as well as a host of delightful cameos, from the Gardeners' Question Time team to Neil and Terry themselves. Other cameos are set to delight listeners, but they are under wraps for now. Probably in a dusty occult bookshop in Covent Garden, but no one is quite sure.

"Mark Heap (Spaced, Green Wing, Stardust) and Peter Serafinowicz (Guardians Of The Galaxy, Star Wars: The Phantom Menace, Shaun Of The Dead) will be taking the central roles as angel and demon, Aziraphale and Crowley, respectively. The star-studded cast will also include Clive Russell (Game Of Thrones, Ripper Street), Julia Deakin (Spaced, Hot Fuzz), Louise Brealey (Sherlock), Simon Jones (Hitchhiker's Guide To The Galaxy), Arsher Ali (Four Lions, Complicit, Beaver Falls), Phil Davis (Silk, Whitechapel, Being Human) and Mark Benton (Waterloo Road, Land Girls) to name but a few...

"The team behind Radio 4 and 4 Extra's Neverwhere – which received a phenomenal critical and audience response last year – has reunited for this special six-part dramatisation of Good Omens. With Dirk Maggs, best known for Hitchhikers Guide To The Galaxy, once again back in the director's and adaptor's chair, joined by producer Heather Larmour and ably assisted by Neil Gaiman... Fans will have to wait excitedly to hear the final drama as it is currently scheduled to air in December. It will broadcast across a week in five half-hour episodes and culminate in an hour-long final apocalyptic showdown, on a Saturday, shortly before Woman's Hour, should the world not actually end..."

http://www.bbc.co.uk/mediacentre/latestnews/2014/r4-good-omens

Lovely photo with the article, too. If you want to see the image on its own:

http://tinyurl.com/q8ojjgq

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

05) DISCWORLD PLAYS NEWS

5.1 REMINDER: THE LAST CONTINENT IN ADELAIDE

Unseen Theatre's latest production – The Last Continent – is on right now!

When: now through 4th October 2014
Venue: The Bakehouse Theatre, 255 Angas Street, Adelaide, South Australia 5000
Time: 8pm all shows
Tickets: Adults $20, Concessions $18, Groups (10+) $16.
To buy online, go to http://tinyurl.com/nqd4vlk and press the big red BUY TICKETS button.

http://www.unseen.com.au/

And here be an excellent selection of iconographs from the current run of The Last Continent:

http://tinyurl.com/qxv2lph

5.2 WYRD SISTERS IN CARDIFF

After their successful presentation of Monstrous Regiment, Monstrous Productions are back with another Discworld goodie: Wyrd Sisters! "Check us out on the official Terry Pratchett website! Not long to go now and less than 2 weeks before we announce our premiere and open audition applications! Lovely to see that so many of our regulars have already bought their tickets, it means a lot to us that you keep coming back- we must be doing something right!"

When: 5th to 8th November 2014
Venue: the Gate Arts Centre, Keppoch St, Cardiff
Time: 7pm-10.30pm all shows
Tickets: £8 (£6 concessions). To purchase online, go to:

http://7889269b08cd.fikket.com/

or email monstrousproductions2012@gmail.com

Remember, all profits from Monstrous Productions plays and merchandise go to Alzheimer's Research UK. In fact, they exist solely to perform Pratchett plays for this very purpose!

http://www.monstrousptc.com/
http://www.thegate.org.uk/

5.3 WYRD SISTERS IN TORONTO

Socratic Theatre Collective will finish its fourth season by presenting their production Stephen Briggs' adaptation of Wyrd Sisters, just in time for Halloween.

When: 31st October-9th November 2014
Venue: Fraser Studios, 101‐76 Stafford Street, Toronto, Ontario
Time: evening shows all 7.30pm; matinees (2nd and 9th November) 3pm
Tickets: $20 general admission/$15 students and seniors. To purchase online, go to:
http://www.brownpapertickets.com/event/869974%E2%80%A9

For more information, go to:

https://www.facebook.com/socratictheatre

5.4 AND WYRD SISTERS IN SOUTHEND

"East Essex Players, who have recently celebrated their 50th anniversary, have decided to break away from their usual Earth based comedies to take on the fantasy of Pratchett's Discworld. 'We have performed a variety of comedy genres from Noel Coward's Blithe Spirit, to episodes of Fawlty Towers' says East Essex Players chairman Hazel Latcham, 'We are now looking forward to the challenge of a fantasy comedy that has a cult status.'"

When: 12th–15th November 2014
Venue: Dixon Studio, Palace Theatre, 430 London Road, Westcliff-on-Sea SS0 9LA
Time: TBA
Tickets: £11.50, £10.50. A £1.50 per ticket booking fee applies, capped at four per order. Groups of 10+ please call 01702 351135 to buy fee-free.
Box Office: 01702 351135. To buy online, go to link below and click on the button for the desired date:

http://tinyurl.com/qat2s74

For more information, go to:

http://www.eastessexplayers.co.uk/

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

06) DISCWORLD CONVENTION NEWS

NULLUS ANXIETAS V (AUSTRALIAN DISCWORLD CONVENTION) NEWS

A message from the Fourecksian Discworld Convention Committee:

Roll out the red carpet, bang those grains, and watch out for stars in your eyes... The Australian Discworld Convention is coming up in a few mere months, and we are taking you to the Moving Pictures!

On April 10-12, 2015 in beautiful Parramatta, Sydney, NSW, Australia, you will experience the magic of the clickies with a range of delightful activities for all types of Discworld fans.

* Meet the stars of the silver screen at the Gala Dinner!
* Show off your costuming and/or acting skills in the "I Wanna Be A Star" Maskerade and XXXX Factor!
* Participate in Studio activities to ensure you make the best clickies possible!
* Test your knowledge of Discworld and Movies and their influence on each other in our Quiz!
* Support the Aboriginal Literacy Foundation at the Charity Auction!
* Be crafty with chain maille, knitting, card-making and more!
* Can you sing? Dance? Handle a sword a little? Learn all these skills and more at our workshops!
* And much more to be announced!

Tickets to the convention (and the Gala Dinner) are on sale now!
One lucky person in the first 100 will get their ticket cost reimbursed, so buy now and you could be as lucky as an Oswald winner!

For information on all of the above in a lot more detail, head over to our website :
http://ausdwcon.org

Our Facebook page is https://www.facebook.com/Ausdwcon or follow us on Twitter @NullusAnxietasV

With One Thousand Elephants!

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

07) DISCWORLD MEETING GROUPS NEWS

The Broken Drummers, "London's Premier Unofficially Official Discworld Group", meets on the first Monday of every month 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. The prize is superb. The chance to set the quiz the following month."

Next meeting: Monday 6th October 2014, from 7pm onwards.

The Drummers' September meet report:

"So Drummers met Monday night. We had no quiz. What we had was lots of chat. I arrived to hear final snippets of a conversation that seemed to be about nerd eugenics. Disturbing stuff! At some point there was discussion of the Worzels and their penchant for agricultural machinery related innuendo. Alex wanted to know the etymology of the phrase "Top Hole!". No-one was sure but an online search suggested it might come from billiards. Barbara and I have both recently acquired Kindles and Larry gave much advice on their use. Meanwhile, Andrew, Sim and Eunice discussed RPGs. Tim and Ruth are rehearsing a new play and will send details. General chat continued until people decided to go home."

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

*

The Pratchett Partisans are a new fan group who meet monthly at either Brisbane or Indooroopilly to "eat, drink and chat about all things Pratchett". For more info about their next meetup, go to http://www.meetup.com/Pratchett-Partisans/ 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 regular monthly dinner and games nights, longer games days, plus play outings, craft-y workshops, and fun social activities throughout the year. For more info and to join our mailing list, visit http://cityofsmallgods.org.au "

*

The Broken Vectis Drummers meet on the first Thursday of every month from 7.30pm at The Castle pub in Newport, Isle of Wight.

Next meeting: Thursday 2nd October 2014, probably, but do email to check.

All new members and curious passersby are very welcome! For more info and any queries, contact broken_vectis_drummers@yahoo.co.uk

*

The Wincanton Omnian Temperance Society (WOTS) meets on the first Friday of every month at Wincanton's famous Bear Inn from 7pm onwards. "Visitors and drop-ins are always welcome!"

Next meeting: Friday 3rd October 2014 (probably).

*

The Northern Institute of the Ankh-Morpork and District Society of Flatalists, a Pratchett fangroup, has been meeting on a regular basis since 2005 but is now looking to take in some new blood (presumably not in the non-reformed Uberwald manner). 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 on the first Monday of every month in Sydney at 3 Wise Monkeys, 555 George Street, Sydney,2000.

Next meeting: Monday 6th October 2014 at 6.30pm (probably). For more information, contact Sue (aka Granny Weatherwax): kenworthys@yahoo.co.uk

*

Perth Drummers meet on the first Monday of the month, subject to holidays.

Next meeting: Monday 6th October 2014 (probably).

"Please note we have moved to Carpe Cafe from 5.30pm Carpe Cafe, 526 Murray Street, Perth, WA. Meeting at a cafe means we are under-18 friendly!"

For details follow Perth Drummers on Twitter @Perth_Drummers and Facebook https://www.facebook.com/groups/Perth.Drummers/ – otherwise message Krystel directly at khewett@live.com

*

Western Drummers (that's two groups for the Sydney Pratchett fans now) meet at The Rowers, Nepean Rowing Club, Bruce Neal Drive, Penrith at 6.30-7.30pm for food, 7.30pm for games, quizzes and chat.

Next meeting: Tuesday, September 23 at 6:00pm (that's tomorrow!)

For more information, contact Nanny Ogg – lewis_oz@bigpond.com – or visit their Facebook page:

https://www.facebook.com/westerndrummers

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

08) IMAGES OF THE MONTH

The "cast" of Dragons at Crumbling Castle, in a gallery:
http://tinyurl.com/p35gctx

The cast of BBC Radio 4's adaptation of Good Omens:
https://pbs.twimg.com/media/BwxkfEnIcAErMNA.jpg:large

Some more parts of the Bradshaw's Guide:
http://tinyurl.com/o7ca9fd

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

09) CLOSE

Whew! Made it to the end of this first issue. And there's more to come, including new reviews, before the end of this month. But for now, Wossname wishes you all a happy Equinox – autumnal or vernal, depending on your Jograffy – so here's to the relevant seasonal celebrations for all. See you soon!

– Annie Mac

ooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooo

The End. If you have any questions or requests, write: wossname-owner (at) pearwood (dot) info
wossname: Clacks rendering of SPEAK HIS NAME to keep Pratchett on the Overhead (Default)
Wossname
Newsletter of the Klatchian Foreign Legion
September 2014 (Volume 17, Issue 9, Post 2)

* * * STOP THE PRESSES * * *

After many years of receiving faithful (if not always competent) service from Yahoo, Wossname is moving to a new mailing list:

wossname at pearwood.info

Provided we manage to avoid any +++OUT OF CHEESE+++ errors on Hex over the next 24 hours, you will receive a welcome message from the new mailing list, which will include instructions for going onto "No Mail" or unsubscribing, followed shortly thereafter by the first genuine, honest-to-goodness new Wossname editorial from our new home. Wheee!

If you haven't received anything by then, please check your spam folder, or drop us a line at wossname-owner at pearwood.info

The historical archives of old WOSSNAME editions will remain open at

https://groups.yahoo.com/group/WOSSNAME/ https://groups.yahoo.com/group/WOSSNAME/

but no new editions will go there, apart from a monthly alert when the new edition comes out. Future newsletters instead will be found archived at two places:

http://wossname.dreamwidth.org/ http://wossname.dreamwidth.org/

http://www.pearwood.info/pipermail/wossname/ http://www.pearwood.info/pipermail/wossname/


-- Steven, assistant editor and trainee technomancer
wossname: Clacks rendering of SPEAK HIS NAME to keep Pratchett on the Overhead (Default)
WOSSNAME

Newsletter of the Klatchian Foreign Legion


September 2013 (Volume 16, Issue 9, Post 1)

********************************************************************
WOSSNAME is a free publication for members of the worldwide Klatchian Foreign Legion and its affiliates, including the North American Discworld Society and other continental groups. Are you a member? Yes, if you sent in your name, country and e-mail address. Are there any dues? No! As a member of the Klatchian Foreign Legion, you'd only forget them...

********************************************************************
Editor in Chief: Annie Mac
News Editor: Fiona (not Bruce) Bruce
Newshounds: Vera, Mogg, Sir J of Croydon Below, the Shadow
Staff Writers: Asti, Alison Not Weatherwax, Steven D'Aprano, L.C. Wynn-Jones
Convention Reporters: Mithtrethth Hania Ogg et al
Staff Technomancer: Jason Parlevliet
Book Reviews: Drusilla D'Afanguin
Puzzle Editor: Tiff
Bard in Residence: Weird Alice Lancrevic
DW Horoscope: Lady Anaemia Asterisk, Fernando Magnifico, Kevin
Emergency Staff: Jason Parlevliet
World Membership Director: Steven D'Aprano (in his copious spare time)


Copyright 2013 by Klatchian Foreign Legion

oooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooo

INDEX:

01) QUOTE OF THE MONTH
02) LETTER FROM THE EDITOR
03) RAISING STEAM NEWS
04) ODDS AND SODS DEPARTMENT
05) REVIEWS
06) DISCWORLD GAMES NEWS
07) DISCWORLD CONVENTION NEWS
08) DISCWORLD PLAYS NEWS
09) DISCWORLD GROUPS MEETING NEWS
10) IMAGES OF THE MONTH
11) AROUND THE BLOGOSPHERE
12) CLOSE


oooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooo

01) QUOTES OF THE MONTH

"You know, I get the feeling that Sir Terry's life is stranger and even more interesting than his books!"

– awed fan Amaya Ramiel


"Terry Pratchett redeems a bad day, every time."

– adoring blogger Hopehare

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

02) A LETTER FROM YOUR EDITOR

This month marks the fifth anniversary of the publication of Nation. Is it only five years? – and yet, how is it that Nation feels like it's been a part of the body of truly great literature for generations now? To quote WOSSNAME's own pre-publication review back in 2008:

"I believe that Nation is one of the most important books ever written, not just for readers in that contentious Young Adult bracket but for readers of any and every age. Much as I love the Discworld series, I place Terry Pratchett's Johnny Maxwell books among my very favourite novels, and Nation has done what I thought was impossible – taken a place in the top echelon of my Most Cherished Novels list. When I read Nation, I was so moved by it that it made me physically ill. What higher recommendation could I possibly give? But fear not; for all its power and depth, Nation is also a delicious book, full of unexpected hilarity and "daww!" moments. I would have loved to have been a very young child when this book was written, just for the pleasure and thrill of having it read to me at bedtime by my grandmother.

"Buy this book. And keep it for your children and grandchildren. They will thank you forever, as I thank Terry Pratchett for it. I hope he continues to write for many years, but if he were never to publish another novel, he has brightened the world beyond measure with Nation."

An unforgettable book that also made a very impressive stage production, Nation should and surely will live on in the canon of greatest literature in the English (or any) language. Time we all agitated to get Nation included in school literature curricula across the world!

[Editor's note: to read the complete original WOSSNAME review on the Ygroups site, go to http://tinyurl.com/kox2nxj – the review is item 7]


*

In other news, Doubleday and Anchor Books have struck a new ten-book deal for USA releases:

"The first book, 'Raising Steam,' will be released in March as part of a seven-figure deal. Mr. Pratchett, whose books have sold more than 80 million copies, is known for his satirical series 'Discworld.' Edward Kastenmeier, executive editor at Vintage Anchor, is the acquiring editor. 'Terry's work has a huge following and an enormous footprint in the fantasy world, as they were the first adopters of his enthralling, hilarious fiction,' Mr. Kastenmeier said. 'With mainstream readers warming to the work of Neil Gaiman and George R. R. Martin, we see this as a crossover moment for Terry, an opportunity to expand his audience.'"

http://tinyurl.com/lnbbol9

Yahoogroups have revamped their entire site. Many of the so-called improvements, er, aren't, but it appears that they *have* finally stopped imposing a ridiculously narrow characters-per-line limit, so I have tried posting this edition "unwrapped". We shall see how it goes.

And now, on with the show!

– Annie Mac, Editor

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

03) RAISING STEAM NEWS

The Raising Steam Machine is a success!

"We have achieved full pressure in the Raising Steam machine! The passenger list is available to download and we are well on the way to unlocking the synopsis!"

https://www.facebook.com/hashtag/raisingsteam

"Ticket holders are now entitled to view a partial passenger list."

Here is the notice itself, for those of you who can't (or won't!) navigate the scary wilds of Facebook:

CUSTOMER NOTICE

All aboard! Customers are invited to make all necessary arrangements to travel on our special service on 7th November, for what promises to be a most edifying experience. Among the Great and Good of the land whose attendance is already confirmed, we are pleased to note the following passengers:

Sir Harry King
Mr Moist von Lipwig
Ms Adora Belle Dearheart
Mr Dick Simnel
Of the Twilight the Darkness
Mr Thunderbolt
Sgt Fred Colon
Mr Crucible Wesley

Significant demand is anticipated for this journey – all those who wish to travel are advised to attend the ticket office regularly for service updates.

How to view this announcement yourself:

1. Go to https://www.facebook.com/hashtag/raisingsteam

2. Find the Raising Steam Machine image and click on it; this will take you to https://www.facebook.com/pratchett?sk=app_190322544333196&app_data

3. When the Raising Steam Machine page loads, click on the "Press" button above the words "Ticket available"

4. A "ticket" will appear - click on it. This will take you to a new page which is your "Ticket". Copy the number to the right of the words "Use this ticket number as your password", then click on "click here". This will take you to http://terrypratchett.co.uk/?p=2724

5. Click on the "The list can be viewed here" hyperlink. This will take you to the announcement!

Remember, to pre-order Raising Steam from Amazon UK in hardcover at a special-offer price of £10.00 (even lower than previously announced), go to:

http://tinyurl.com/qxmh87w

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

04) ODDS AND SODS DEPARTMENT

4.1 REMINDER: SIR PTERRY AT BRIGHTON READS


There's still time to get your tickets for Terry Pratchett and Friends at Brighton's City Reads 2013 festival!

"Joining Sir Terry Pratchett will be three friends from his multimedia production company, Narrativia. Sir Terry is unable to do a signing, but books on sale, courtesy of City Books, will be stamped exclusively for this event."

When: Sunday 29th September
Venue: Concert Hall, Brighton Dome
Time: 2pm
Tickets: £15 (£12 conc) To book by phone, ring (01273) 709709. To book online, go to:

http://tinyurl.com/mqkw3gh

Also, here be a set of iconographs from last Friday's Brighton City Reads 2013 "rehearsed reading" of Guards! Guards! at Hove Lawns. Looks like an excellent time was had by all:

http://www.flickr.com/photos/nigeyb/sets/72157635530863564/


4.2 GOLD, GOLD, GOLD...

Sir Terry Pratchett, financial adviser? Apparently! At least according to Miranda Marquit in Business Insider Australia, who uses Moist and Making Money as a lengthy illustration of the power and secrets of gold:

"One of my favourite books is 'Making Money' by Terry Pratchett. In it, a former con man, Moist von Lipwig, is put in charge of the mint by the city's benevolent dictator. He is opposed by the head clerk of the bank, Mr. Bent — who is all about the virtue of gold. Mr. Bent insists that a currency must be backed by gold in order to be truly legit. On the other hand, Moist believes that it's OK to print money. And as long as it goes 'round and 'round, everything will be fine — whether or not there's actual gold in the bank's vault.

"Among the most interesting insights, though, comes during an exchange about the relative value of gold. Moist points out that on a desert island, gold is basically useless. You can't eat it. You can't plant it. A potato, though, can be eaten. Part of it can be planted to grow more potatoes. When you're starving, gold suddenly isn't so valuable. Just like everything else, the value of gold is in how it's perceived. This is true in the 'real' world as well. Anyone watching the rollercoaster ride that has been gold prices for the last year or two knows that gold's value changes on whims..."

http://tinyurl.com/mbxol9y


4.3 TRUCKERS DVD UPDATES

The magazine SciFiNow has posted several clips from the remastered stop-motion miniseries of Truckers. To view the trailers/clips, go to:

http://tinyurl.com/qbxbscx

Truckers can be pre-ordered from Amazon at a special price of £11.26 (free delivery only in UK):

http://tinyurl.com/kz7nw4g


4.4 RICHARD J ARTLEY MEMORIAL SITE

From the family of the late, much-loved Discworld superfan Richard J Artley, whose passing last month was noted throughout Pratchett fandom and in the August issue of WOSSNAME:

"Memorial Site for Richard

"We have received many emails of condolence for which our family are very grateful. We have set up a memorial page for Richard at the address below. Please feel free to pass this on and to remember him by adding a photo, sharing a story or leaving a tribute in his memory."

Visit Richard's memorial website:

http://www.forevermissed.com/richardjartley/#about


4.5 ACTION REPLAY: SHE'S GONNA GET MARRIED

From The Telegraph:

"Rhianna, who is a BAFTA-nominated writer for games including Tomb Raider as well as film, TV and comics, thought she and boyfriend Louis Leigh were at the Screen on the Green in Islington, where they had their first date, to watch a late-night showing of The Blues Brothers to celebrate Leigh's 35th birthday. But instead of the film, a 'trailer for the proposal' about her life, which had been specially created by Mr Leigh with the help of two friends – comic illustrator Naniibim and composer Michael Kruk – appeared on screen. Rhianna said: 'At first I didn't recognise myself, it was so unexpected but such a wonderful experience.' After the trailer, Leigh went down on one knee and said to her, 'I love you and I want to spend the rest of my life with you. Will you marry me?' to which she replied yes. Leigh had been planning the proposal since January and the couple will marry next year..."

http://tinyurl.com/nun3vvr

To see the film again:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iA8XgI81ElI&feature=youtu.be


4.6 REMINDER: RICE MEMORY TRAIL THIS MONTH

RICE – the Research Institute for the Care of the Elderly – is holding its yearly Memory Trail sponsored walk this month, on Sunday 22nd September. As WOSSNAME readers will remember, Sir Pterry opened the new RICE Centre back in 2008. The Memory Trail is a great way for people living or visiting in the Bath area to have a lively day out and raise funds for Alzheimer's and elderly care research:

"You can raise sponsorship or just bring yourselves, as your contribution through the registration fee is valuable to us. Encourage your friends to come as well and visit one of the wonderful local hostelries for lunch after your walk. Registration is between 10am and 12pm in the Marshfield Church Hall.

"All entry fees and sponsorship raised goes to RICE for our research programme and for supporting and educating carers and families. Entry fees are £5 per adult; £2.50 per junior or £12 per family and we have a prize for the person who raises the highest sponsorship."

The RICE Memory Trail 2013 takes place on Sunday 22nd September. To download a registration form, go to:

http://tinyurl.com/mwhwtzz

and send your completed form to: RICE Memory Trail, the RICE Centre, Building 8, Royal United Hospital, Bath BA1 3NG

The fundraising office can be contacted by phone (01225 476435) or email (info@rice.org.uk) if you have further questions about the event.

http://www.rice.org.uk/the+memory+trail


4.7 STEELEYE SPAN LIVE WINTERSMITH TOUR ITINERARY!

Steeleye Span Wintersmith 2013 Tour

"Now having established themselves live over the last 2 years as a 6 piece, Steeleye Span are emerging on another new exciting chapter. This time the band has looked even further afield and has found inspiration in the work of famous British author, Terry Pratchett. Famous for his series of Discworld novels Terry is a long-standing fan of the band, even booking them to play at his sixtieth birthday party. Now the two are to collaborate on a brand new project, a record based on Pratchett’s Wintersmith novel. The subject matter is completely appropriate for Steeleye, a tale of ancient rituals and secret folk dances that perfectly complements their previous work whilst taking it in new directions. The resulting album will be released towards the end of the year. Fans will be able to get a taste of these new songs along with the familiar classics and gems on the band’s forthcoming UK tour."

15th November: Babbacombe Theatre, Torquay. Box office: 01803 328385
16 November: Hall For Cornwall, Truro. Box office: 01872 262466
17 November: Everyman Theatre, Cheltenham. Box office: 01242 572573
18 November: Forest Folk, Wickham (TBC).
20 November: Octagon Theatre, Yeovil. Box office: 1935 422884
21 November: Queen’s Theatre, Barnstaple. Box office: 01271 324242
22 November: Electric Palace, Bridport. Box office: 01308 426336
23 November: Exmouth Pavilion, Exmouth. Box office: 01395 222477
25th November: Southport Theatre & Convention Centre, Southport. Box office: 01704 500036
26 November: St Georges Hall, Bradford. Box office: 01274 432000
27 November: The Sage, Gateshead. Box office: 0191 443 4661
28 November: Floral Pavilion Theatre, New Brighton. Box office: 0151 666 0000
29 November: Royal & Derngate, Northampton. Box office: 01604 624811
1 December: Great British Folk Festival, Skegness. Box office: 0845 070 4734
2 December: The Waterside Theatre, Aylesbury. Box office: 0844 871 7607
3 December: Warwick Arts Centre, Warwick. Box office: 02476 524524
4 December: Theatre Royal, Margate. Box office: 01843 292795 or 01843 296111
6 December: Shanklin Theatre, Shanklin. Box office: 01983 868000
7 December: St Mary in the Castle, Hastings. Box office: 01323 841414
8 December: Queens Theatre, Hornchurch. Box office: 01708 443333
9 December: Barbican Hall, London. Box office: 020 7638 8891
10 December: The Apex, Bury St Edmunds. Box office: 01284 758000
11 December: The Concert Hall, Reading. Box office: 0118 960 6060
13 December: Theatr Hafren, Newtown. Box office: 01686 614555
14 December: The Platform, Morecambe. Box office: 01524 582803
16 December: Opera House, Buxton. Box office: 0845 127 2190
17 December: New Vic Theatre, Newcastle–Under–Lyme. Box office: 01782 717962
18 December: St George’s, Bristol. Box office: 0845 40 24 001
19 December: City Hall, Salisbury. Box office: 01722 43443

http://parkrecords.com/tourdates.php


4.8 ORANGUTAN NEWS

Chester Zoo is promoting their "Go Orange for Orangutans" appeal for October:

"Orangutans are one of our closest relatives. We share OVER 96% of our DNA with them and, along with humans, they're the only great ape to live outside of Africa. Known as the 'old man of the forest', they're also the only apes that spend almost their entire lives in the rainforest canopies of Sumatra and Borneo. Their treetop homes are some of the oldest on earth and had remained almost unchanged for the past 70 million years. However in the 21st century the demand for timber, palm oil, roads, agricultural land and space for mining means huge areas of the forest have now been lost, taking with it the homes of orangutans. With their numbers dwindling we're on the verge of losing this species FOREVER.

"HOW YOU CAN HELP

"We're asking you to pick a day in October to Go Orange for Orangutans! Donate a pound to saving this unique species and go to school or work for a day dressed in as much orange as you dare! Maybe you could dye your hair, or paint your face as well. Don't let it stop there, get creative with other orange themed fundraising ideas. We'll be awarding a prize for the craziest idea, and also for the school or company that raise the most money.

"OUR TARGET

"We're aiming to raise enough funds to help our conservation partners begin a new project looking at how these beautiful creatures are adapting to living on the ground in areas where their forest homes have been destroyed. A minimum of £5,000 will help purchase 15 specialist camera traps that will enable us to see images of the orangutans and give us an insight into their lives on the ground. Will you help us do this? Please take part in our campaign and help secure the survival of this magnificent species. 100% of money raised goes to funding the organisations working on the frontline of orangutan conservation. You can find out more about how your money is spent on our Act for Wildlife website:

"A minimum of £5,000 will help purchase 15 specialist camera traps that will enable us to see images of the orangutans and give us an insight into their lives on the ground. Every little helps in the fight to save orangutans and their forest home. In addition to the camera traps your money could help in many ways..."

http://tinyurl.com/lrqyoyk

"REGISTER NOW AND GET STARTED

"Getting started is really easy. Complete a short form on our Act for Wildlife website to register and you'll get a free fundraising pack to download that includes everything you need, from why we need your help to fundraising ideas to get you started. Register now on Act for Wildlife":

http://tinyurl.com/mscjsfs

http://www.chesterzoo.org/support-us/go-orange-for-orangutans

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05) REVIEWS

REVIEW: A BLINK OF THE SCREEN

By Maree Field on the Land of Fog site Stuff:

"A new book from Sir Terry Pratchett is always a treat for fans, and A Blink of the Screen is no exception. Indeed, it's more of a treat than usual because it's Pratchett's collected short stories, including several from the legendary Discworld series... It's a treat of a book to dip into, as Pratchett's humour is at the forefront, and he does chatty little forewords for each story. The Discworld section of the book - which features regulars like Granny Weatherwax and Granny Ogg – has an extra treat, with illustrations by Josh Kirby, which bring the stories to vivid life. What really shines through in the whole collection is Pratchett's joy in the absurd, and his celebration of it, companionably brought to colourful life by Kirby's illustrations..."

http://tinyurl.com/ktq4r2c


REVIEW: SNUFF

By Leslie Ashmore in the Los Altos Town Crier:

"Pratchett's Discworld novels are remarkable creations. Somehow, he manages in each book to do several things at once: introduce dozens of new, highly developed characters while resurrecting many familiar and beloved faces; craft two or three amazing plots that meld together by the end; satirize our current social mores and conventions; create the highly authentic city of Ankh-Morpork; and play with the English language and its idioms with hilarious results. Not bad in a day's work.`So how does 'Snuff' stack up against Pratchett's earlier works? It's a complicated question. The premise of the book is simple... It sounds like the beginnings of a classic Pratchett tale, but 'Snuff' is curiously heavy-handed. He details the crimes against the goblin people in such repetitive, brutal detail that at times I wanted to shout, 'I get it, I get it – discrimination is really bad!'... Despite the minor shortcomings of 'Snuff,' a fairly good Pratchett novel is still better than most other best-selling works of fiction, so I can recommend it to book clubs that enjoy fantasy and satire..."

http://tinyurl.com/moo6lsr

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06) DISCWORLD GAMES NEWS

6.1 THE WITCHES ARE, ERM, IS COMING!


"Treefrog is proud to announce that September 2013 will see the release of The Witches, the second Treefrog Discworld game, based on the novels of Sir Terry Pratchett. It follows on from the success of Ankh-Morpork. With over 50,000 copies sold worldwide Ankh-Morpork continues to delight gamers and fantasy fans alike and continues to sell strongly in its third year of release.

"The Witches is set in the magically charged land of Lancre. Players take on the role of trainee witches, such as Tiffany Aching and Petulia Gristle, learning their craft and dealing with all the problems that life on Discworld can throw at them. A subtle blend of headology, magic and, of course, the all-important cup of tea will see our heroines tackle everything from a sick pig to a full-blown invasion of elves.

"Life can be tough for a young witch in Lancre, fear not however, a cast of some of Terry Pratchett's most famous characters will be on hand to aid your quest. Along the way you'll meet Granny Weatherwax, Nanny Ogg and Magrat Garlick, along with a rich supporting cast of familiar faces from some Pratchett's bestselling Discworld series. When things get really tough and you feel you are turning ‘Black Aliss' you can always have a cup of tea with one of your fellow witches. The game can be played with up to four players, and can even be played solitaire.

"The Witches is more of a gentle family friendly game, well, as friendly as you can get with Nac Mac Feegles hanging around, rather than the back-stabbing experience that is Ankh-Morpork, and can be played co operatively if players so wish. Once again Sir Terry Pratchett and the folks at the Discworld Emporium have made sure that each character is faithfully represented, with all of the artwork being produced by Peter Dennis."

http://www.treefroggames.com/witches

"Treefrog will also be producing a very limited Collectors Edition. As with the Discworld Ankh-Morpork game, Treefrog will be publishing a Collector's Edition of The Witches. Only 2000 copies will be produced, with no possibility of a reprint. The main differences between this version and the standard version are:

- Four custom sculpted pewter figurines, representing the four witch characters.
- An A1 size poster presenting artwork from the game.
- A larger map.
- Different cover artwork and box size.

"The figurines vary between 40mm and 50mm in height. They have been hand-polished and finished with a black ink. A cloth bag will be included in the game for their storage. These figures will not be available to but separately. The figurines have been sculpted by Anton Ducrot.

"You will only be able to buy the game direct from Treefrog, either from our website or at Essen. The game will be available to order on the 20th September."

http://www.treefroggames.com/the-witches-collectors-edition


A further update from Martin:

"The collector's edition will only be available direct from Treefrog. We are starting direct sales again using an order fulfilment service based in the UK. With the standard version we are planning to ship a number of copies to Mind Games Canberra, but that will be by ship so will take a little time. People might be able to pick up the standard edition via Good Games (who will probably be importing it from Mayfair)."

There will be yet more updates after the Essen con!


6.1a REVIEW: "ANKH-MORPORK" GAME

by Nick Lyons

"Prior to receiving a review copy of the 'Discworld: Ankh-Morpork' board game, I decided to familiarize myself with Terry Pratchett's fantastical Discworld book series so that I could have a frame of reference for the game. I opted to go with the first book in the series ('The Color of Magic') and I found myself largely enjoying the whimsical and weird story. While the board game doesn't include a ton of references to ‘Color,' I can safely say that the game captures Pratchett's imaginative creations quite nicely... At first, 'Discworld: Ankh-Morpork' feels like a variation of 'Monopoly,' but it soon becomes clear that this is a much faster paced and more eventful game than 'Monopoly' ever could be. Right off the bat, I was drawn to the fact that there are a variety of winning conditions. Since you initially don't know what the opponent(s) are doing, you have to strategize how to win while also observing the opponent's every move. This makes for a very competitive and fun race to the finish game in which players can even play mind games with each other if they think they have figured out each other's moves.

"Another deeply impressive component to the game are the pieces themselves. With wooden token pieces, a meticulously drawn Ankh- Morpork board, and a large amount of illustrated cards featuring characters and towns, it's clear that a lot of work went into this thematic game. This isn't a cheaply produced licensed product which we so often see these days. It's abundantly clear that Martin Wallace and company are passionate about Terry Pratchett's world and they went all out to create a fitting board game tribute to his beloved work..."

http://tinyurl.com/n3vjm9d


6.2 GUARDS! GUARDS! BOARD GAME NEWS

A reminder from the wizzardly, um, hardworking G!G! creators Dave and Len:

"Hi everyone in the US,

"Just to remind you that you can buy you copy of the revised Guards! Guards! boardgame from Game Salute. It includes the acclaimed 90 Discworld character cards illustrated by Stephen Player. USA price $60."

http://shop.gamesalute.com/products/guards-guards


6.3 DISCWORLD LEGO: AN UPDATE

Remember the Discworld Lego crusade from a few months ago? Head crusader GlenBricker has now garnered 2,000 supporting votes and has added a Rincewind character to the proposed set. Now all he needs is to top 10,000 votes and Lego will produce it!

http://lego.cuusoo.com/ideas/view/36302

Glen's blog can be found at:

http://blog.brick-hero.com/

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

O7) DISCWORLD CONVENTION NEWS

HERE COMES THE FIRST POLISH DISCWORLD CONVENTION!!!

Or as the wonderfully slightly-wonky English translation puts it, "Lancre Convention Celebrating Discworld 30 years of anniversary October 11-13, Nawojowa Gora, near Krakow"

Yes, next month the world of Discworld fandom in Poland gets an opportunity to express itself en masse. WOSSNAME wishes this convention every success, as the organisers certainly seem to have got well into the spirit of the thing.

Below are some highlights and info, including order of service. Or of chaos. All right, of convention...

Friday, October 11 activities:

Opening of registration point
Gambler's Guild
L-Space
Underground Mime's Guild
Night Kitchen of Unseen University
The Ankh-Morpork Watch
Unseen University and Artificer's Guild
Hex building
Susan's school

http://konwent.pratchett.pl/english/#chapter-1

Saturday, October 12 activities:

Guild of Exotic Dancers
Witch'es cottage
Unseen University's Library
Fools's Guild
Unseen University
Dibbler's special
Merchant's Guild
Discworld Miss and Mister contest

http://konwent.pratchett.pl/english/#chapter-2

Sunday, October 13 activities:

Actor's Guild
Music's Guild
Ankh-Morpork Times
Town Criers' Guild
Secret association
Alchemist's Guild

http://konwent.pratchett.pl/english/#chapter-3

Organizing a piece of program:

Do you have a great idea that we did not come up with? Or maybe you just want to help with any of existing ones? Please email grace@pratchett.pl and let us know about your idea! Everything is created by fans and at the cost of it, but we will try to organize some surprises for those who helped.

Volunteering:

If you think, that during the event you will find some time to help, do something, then you should let us know. If you are going to be dressed up as one of the characters/ things/ phenomenon, don't forget to let us know. We're going to need help with cleaning, moving things, helping in the kitchen, info point, watching etc. But we want to make sure that no one will miss anything that wanted to attend, so it is enough if someone can help for an hour or two. Contact grace@pratchett.pl

Other help:
You dare to think you know something well and you can help? You have some great ideas, but not necessarily about organizing program. Maybe you want to help with advertising, or filming? We are waiting for you! Contact grace@pratchett.pl

http://konwent.pratchett.pl/english/#footnotes

Links for accommodation, registration, maps and directions, and general FAQ:

http://konwent.pratchett.pl/english/#editorial

The FAQ page is particularly excellent! Some examples:

Q: I am Troll, and I want to dress as a dwarf, is it allowed?
A: If only you will not bring the Campaign for Equal Heights with you and will not start another Koom Valley, then we do not see a problem here.

Q: I am a 42 year old dwarf, do you require a consent from the parents only for underaged humans or other species as well?
A: All of the underaged persons of any species are obliged to bring a consent from their parent. If you are not sure, ask your parents.

Q: I am travelling on the broomstick, is there a runway?
A: Depending on space you need, you can land on the local field. We also have a broomstick park.

There's even a page of useful Polish-English phrases:

http://konwent.pratchett.pl/english/#dictionary

Registration Price list

If paid until September 22nd:
30 PLN - entrance for 3 days (with at least 1 hot meal per day)
20 PLN Convention t-shirt with a possibility of your name on the sleeve
25 PLN Dragon t-shirt (only black ones)
18 PLN Dragon bags (black)

If paid until October 6th:
35 PLN - entrance for 3 days (with at least 1 hot meal per day)
20 PLN Convention t-shirt with a possibility of your name on the sleeve
25 PLN Dragon t-shirt (only black ones) – if available
18 PLN Dragon bags (black) - if available

If paid after October 6th or at the event:
40 PLN - entrance for 3 days (with at least 1 hot meal per day)
20 PLN Convention t-shirt with a possibility of your name on the sleeve
25 PLN Dragon t-shirt (only black ones) – if available
18 PLN Dragon bags (black) - if available

You will receive a bank account details after verifying your registration. Please direct all the questions to
konwent@pratchett.pl

http://konwent.pratchett.pl/english/

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

08) DISCWORLD PLAYS NEWS

8.1 RINCE CYCLE TICKETS!


ORDERING TICKETS FOR THE RINCE CYCLE – NOW AVAILABLE

"Studio Theatre Club continues its world-famous Discworld stage series with a new offering: 'The Rince Cycle', dramatised by Stephen Briggs. "An adventure based on Terry Pratchett's Rincewind novels The Colour of Magic, The Light Fantastic and snippets of Sourcery.

"Tickets are £8.50 each. You should send us your order, with a stamped, self-addressed envelope, and your cheque (payable to 'STC'). PLEASE - If you're booking for one of the weekend performances (Friday evening, Saturday matinee, Saturday evening), please do give us a second and third choice, in case we've sold out for your first choice. Tickets will be allocated in order of receipt with us.

"Please send your orders to:
STC (Rince Cycle), PO Box 1486, Oxford, OX4 9DQ, with
· A stamped, self-addressed envelope;
· Your choice of dates (with 2nd and 3rd choice if you're after weekend tickets);
· Your cheque, payable to 'STC';
· An email contact if possible."

When: 26th to 30th November 2013
Venue: Unicorn Theatre, Old Abbey Buildings, Checker Walk, Abingdon, Oxon OX14 3HZ
Time: 7:30
Tickets: £8.50.

http://www.studiotheatreclub.com/CurrentPlans.html

http://www.abingdonabbey-unicorntheatre.org.uk/findus.html


8.2 WYRD SISTERS IN GLOUCESTERSHIRE

Dursley Operatic and Dramatic Society (DODS) will be presenting their production of Wyrd Sisters next month. "The DODS is one of the leading amateur dramatics societies in the South West with an ethos of staging the best possible productions in whatever show we undertake. The society currently stages three senior shows a year plus one show from its thriving Junior group. The society is a warm, friendly and welcoming group that embraces all newcomers and encourages them to realise their talents whether that be on stage, backstage, wardrobe, lighting, sound etc."

When: 9th-12th October 2013
Venue: Lister Hall, The Chantry Centre, 34-36 Long Street, Dursley, Gloucs GL11 4JB
Time: 7.30pm all shows
Tickets: £10.00 adults, £8 youth (in full time education). To buy online, go to:

http://www.thedods.ticketsource.co.uk/

http://www.the-dods.com/


8.3 MASKERADE IN BUCKINGHAMSHIRE

Chesham Theatre Company presents their production of Maskerade in November.

When: Wednesday 6 November to Saturday 9 November Venue: The Elgiva Theatre, St Mary's Way, Chesham, Bucks Time: evening performances at 8 pm, matinee (Saturday) 2.30pm. Tickets: from The Elgiva Box Office (tel: 01494 582900) or online at www.elgiva.com

http://www.cheshamtheatrecompany.org.uk/


8.4 WYRD SISTERS IN LINCOLNSHIRE

The St Peter's Hill Players will present their production of Wyrd Sisters in time for Halloween! [Wyrd Sisters on 31st October is becoming something of a worldwide tradition, innit – Ed.]

"Celebrate Halloween with Wyrd Sisters – Terry Pratchett's hilarious Shakespearean tale. The story includes a fool, a wicked Duke and Duchess, the ghost of a murdered King, dim soldiers, strolling players, unionised robbers, a land in peril and of course, not forgetting the three witches who stand between the kingdom and certain destruction. Will the witches defeat evil? Hubble, bubble, we smell trouble! This is a fun theatrical comedy for all the family. As a treat for Halloween SPHP have reduced ticket prices for all performances!"

When: Wednesday 30th October to Saturday 2nd November 2013
Venue: Guildhall Arts Centre, St Peter's Hill, Grantham, NG31 6PZ, "parallel to the High Street in the centre of town. It is instantly recognisable, located beneath the clock tower which dominates the green."
Time: 7:30 pm
Tickets: £7.50. To purchase tickets online, go to:

http://tinyurl.com/kuootf2

The Box Office is open from Mon to Fri 9.30am to 4.30pm, Sat 9.30am to 1.00pm and 45 minutes prior to events. Discounts are available to Artscene Members, unemployed, senior citizens, students, children under 16, those in receipt of income support, invalidity, benefit or disability allowance, and to a carer accompanying a disabled person. Please bring proof of status when making a booking.

Student Standby tickets are available to anyone in full-time education for all Guildhall promoted shows for just £2.00, 15 minutes prior to a show, provided it is not sold out.

Paid-for tickets should be collected at least 15mins before the start of a show to avoid a last minute rush.

Note: Children under 12 must be accompanied by an adult and will only be admitted unaccompanied to events deemed to be age appropriate. Children under the age of 18 months are not admitted into the theatre. Any child brought to see a performance must have a ticket and an allocated seat due to Health and Safety regulations.

http://www.guildhallartscentre.com/shows/wyrd-sisters


8.5 MORT IN NORCROSS, GEORGIA

Lionheart Theatre will present their production of Mort, directed by Jason Caldwell, in November 2013. A Discworld first for the state!

When: 1st-17th November 2013
Venue: Lionheart Theatre, 10 College Street (at the corner with Britt Avenue), Norcross, GA 30071
Time: Friday and Saturday nights 7:30pm, Sundays 2pm
Tickets: $15 for Adults $12 for seniors and students. Groups of 10 or more $10 each. Please call to arrange. All ticket prices include dessert and beverage

For more information, ring (770) 885-0425

http://www.lionhearttheatre.org/

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

09) DISCWORLD GROUPS MEETING NEWS

The Pratchett Partisans are a new fan group who meet monthly at either Brisbane or Indooroopilly to "eat, drink and chat about all things Pratchett". For more info about their next meetup, go to

http://www.meetup.com/Pratchett-Partisans/

or contact Ula directly at uwilmott@yahoo.com.au

Some upcoming Pratchett Partisans events of note:

A fanfic extravaganza?

"Exclusive reading of John's new Discworld Short story. This will be your first chance to hear a brand new DW story called 'The Patrician's Voice', written by one of us - John O. John says has been making a nuisance of himself on various stages since 1974 and has bought many Pratchett plays to life at Brisbane Arts Theatre since 2007, one of which, 'Nanny Ogg's Cookbook' Sir Terry himself attended.

"John has recently created a mini-masterpiece to share with us: a short story that came to him nearly fully formed as he woke up one morning. Set after The Truth and before Going Postal, The Patrician's Voice brings together many of our favourite Watch and Wizard characters, Vetinari, Reacher Guilt and a few surprise guests, and takes us for a new adventure into the world we know and love.

"Join us for a reading, discussion and afternoon tea."

When: Sunday, October 6, 2013
Venue: Coffee Club Goodna, Shop 1/12 Queen Street, Goodna (in the enclosed side room outside)
Time: 2pm

Brisbane/Ankh Morpork Photo Scavenger Hunt No#2

"Missed our August scavenger Hunt? Or did you go and have heaps of fun? Either way join us for another one! Use DW related clues to explore Brisbane and find a variety of Ankh Morpork related places and things. The adventure will probably take about an hour and a half, after which we will share prizes and drinks/food at a place to be decided. The more the merrier so please bring family and friends – non Pratchett people are most welcome."

When: Saturday, October 19, 2013
Venue: Groove Train, King George Square, 100 Adelaide St, Brisbane
Time: 3:00 PM


Celebrate the release of Raising Steam

"Lets go to the markets and enjoy a Steam train ride! The market is free and pretty close to Bundamba Train Station. Steam train rides are $10 (half hour ride) and leave at 11am and 12noon."

When: Saturday, November 16, 2013
Venue: Ipswich Turf Club
Brisbane Road, Bundamba
Time: 10.00am

*

The City of Small Gods is a group for fans in Adelaide and South Australia. TCoSG have regular dinner and games nights, plus play outings, craft-y workshops, and social activities throughout the year. For more info and to join the mailing list, go to:

http://ausdwcon.org/pages/smallgods


TCoSG will also be hosting a special one-night-only event this coming November:

"The City of Small Gods Terry Pratchett Fan Club presents 'QUIZ LONG AND PROSPER' – a Science Fiction & Fantasy themed Quiz Night!"

When: 26th October 2013
Venue: Clarence Gardens Bowling Club, Winona Ave, Clarence Gardens, South Australia
Time: 7pm
Tickets: $15 Adult/$12 Concession, tables of 8. To book tables, email: RoundWorldEventsSA@gmail.com

For more information, go to:
http://ausdwcon.org/pages/quizlong

*

The Broken Vectis Drummers meet on the first Thursday of every month from 7.30pm at The Castle pub in Newport, Isle of Wight. The next meeting will probably be on Thursday 3rd October 2013, but do email (see below) to check. All new members and curious passersby are very welcome! For more info and any queries, contact:

broken_vectis_drummers@yahoo.co.uk

*

The Wincanton Omnian Temperance Society (WOTS) meets on the first Friday of every month at the famous Bear Inn from 7pm onwards. Visitors and drop-ins are always welcome! The next WOTS meeting will (probably) be on Friday 4th October 2013.

*

The next meeting of the Broken Drummers, London's original Discworld meeting group, will be from 7pm on Monday 7th October 2013 at the Monkey Puzzle, 30 Southwick Street, London W2 1JQ. Note the new web address:

http://brokendrummers.org/

Here be the Broken Drummers' September 2013 meet report:

"We had a nice meeting Monday. Early on there was discussion of which animals we would and would not eat. Alex C. treated us to graphic descriptions of the general grossness of sheep as I ate my lambsteak. This led to discussion of performing mouth to mouth resuscitation on animals (as my uncle once did with a piglet). James B. declared that he would be willing to do this to save a snake (perform mouth to mouth on the snake that is, not a pig) in principle although not in practice because it wouldn't work.

"Jessica did a quiz based on the Hobbit. This was won by Andrew who received a pink stationary[sic] set. Jessica was apologetic about the colour but I pointed out that a man with two My Little Pony T-shirts would not be afraid of pink."

For more information write to BrokenDrummers@gmail.com or nicholls.helen@yahoo.co.uk

*

The Northern Institute of the Ankh-Morpork and District Society of Flatalists, a Pratchett fangroup, have been meeting on a regular basis since 2005 but is now looking to take in some new blood (presumably not in the non-reformed Uberwald manner). The Flatalists normally meet at The Narrowboat Pub in Victoria Street, Skipton, N Yorks, 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/

*

Drummers Downunder meet on the first Monday of every month in Sydney at Maloneys, corner of Pitt & Goulburn Streets, at 6.30pm. The next meeting will (probably) be on Monday 2nd September 2013. For more information, contact Sue (aka Granny Weatherwax):

kenworthys@yahoo.co.uk

*

Perth Drummers meet on the traditional date of first Monday of the month. The next meeting should be on Monday 7th October 2013.

Please note we have moved to San Churro this month from 5.30pm (San Churro, 132 James Street, Northbridge, Perth, WA).

For details follow us on Twitter @Perth_Drummers and Facebook
https://www.facebook.com/groups/Perth.Drummers/

Otherwise message Krystel directly at khewett@live.com

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

10) IMAGES OF THE MONTH

Awesome art car from Burning Man – yes, it's Great A'Tuin and the elephants and the Discworld! Amazing:

http://tinyurl.com/la29jsv


Pterry, looking very dapper at the Edinburgh Festival with Rob Wilkins and John Lloyd:

https://pbs.twimg.com/media/BSTsHIyCEAAoaVe.jpg


One Derek Taylor is a seriously hardcore Pratchett fan – just look at his whole-back tattoo:

http://tinyurl.com/nyx9sk7


Posted by Kim White, a timely "iconograph" of Lord Vetinari:

http://tinyurl.com/mtbvg38


26 Discworld quotes in poster-able form:

http://tinyurl.com/ng3mmgq


Billy Joe Walchuk posted this Unseen Academicals-appropriate photo:

http://tinyurl.com/lgb939j


...and last, fabulous edible orangutan by Richard's Cakes:

http://tinyurl.com/mzcuo95

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

11) AROUND THE BLOGOSPHERE

Blogger KokkieH's review of The Long Earth:

"Parallel universes are nothing new to Science Fiction, but the idea is given a wonderful new spin in The Long Earth, a collaboration between Sir Terry Pratchett and Stephen Baxter... The main plot of the novel revolves around Joshua Valiente, a natural stepper (someone born with the ability) from Madison, Wisconsin and one of the first to be identified, giving him a kind of celebrity status. Joshua teams up with Lobsang, a Tibetan motorcycle mechanic who reincarnated into a supercomputer. Together they set out on a journey beyond a million Earths out. Lobsang claims the purpose of the journey is for scientific discovery, but Joshua soon learns there is some threat out in the Long Earth... There are several more subplots woven into the story, focusing on various individuals and how they deal with stepping and exploring and exploiting the new Earths... I haven't read anything by Baxter, but I could spot Pratchett's style almost immediately. Similar to his Discworld novels, The Long Earth is not so much made up of chapters (even though the novel has numbered chapters), as scenes that at first seem to be tossed in there rather haphazardly. If you've never read anything by him before it can be jarring at first as you struggle to figure out what the story actually is, but after a while you get used to it and everything makes sense.

"The characters come across as a little flat. The focus is much more on stepping and its effect on humanity than on the characters and we don't even see the main character, Joshua, from all sides. However, if you're used to Sir Terry's style that's also not surprising as he tends to let his characters grow over the course of several novels (and there's at least three more novels planned in this series). What really impressed me about this novel is the world-building... I wouldn't call this novel a page turner. Rather, it reads almost like a documentary, as if it is reporting on events as they unfold while giving us some insight into the thoughts and emotions of the characters. This unfortunately makes it easy to put down, but it was good enough that I kept picking it back up again..."

http://tinyurl.com/kketvpd

Reviewing Nanny Ogg's Cookbook, blogger Nadine is a bit sad that the "dirty bits" were expunged from it:

"I had known about Nanny Ogg's Cookbook for a while, being surrounded by Terry Pratchett fans in my internet bookosphere. But until I read Maskerade, I never quite saw the appeal in reading a book of recipes written by a fictional character. Once I had that little background knowledge (and got to know Nanny Ogg in all her glory), this became a must-buy. I found a second hand hardback copy and began reading the day it arrived. The format allows for quick reading and it doesn't matter if you only manage to read one recipe on the train or one chapter about etiquette before bed. There is no plot you have to keep in mind, this is just Nanny Ogg's wisdom as she shares it with the world, complete with misspelled words and her translations of words in 'foreign'. The editor's notes, shown as little post-its, remind us that grammar has been fixed, whenever necessary, and – to my chagrin – all the potentially dirty bits were left out... My greatest surprise was probably that most of the recipes could actually be made without poisoning anybody. They are, so to speak, Roundworld-friendly...

"The real joy came in two parts. One is the wonderful illustrations that accompany you throughout the book. Each of these is intricate and lovingly drawn. But they are not just pictures slapped in the margins to show Nanny in her kitchen, they all tell you something about the characters and amused me greatly, even without reading the text. My second favorite part were Nanny's lessons about etiquette. She distinguishes between Discworld in general and Lancre culture specifically. Whereas somebody may be knighted in Lancre for managing to make the castle less draughty, in Ankh-Morpork, other rules apply. Nanny mostly gets by with her confidence and warm heart, or in case that doesn't work, with a nice jug of something alcoholic. The entire book is infused with her wonderful sense of humour and her love for food and friends and family..."

http://tinyurl.com/lxhrggn

...and Nadine also thoroughly approves of travelling Lancrastian witches, as they go Abroad:

"Terry Pratchett knows his fairy tales. While this Discworld book focuses mainly on Cinderella, influences of other well-known and not so well-known stories slip into the witches' adventure. Take Mrs Gogol's house, for example. You can see it in the (very green!) full cover illustration above. Anyone who's ever heard of Baba Yaga will recognise that house on chicken's legs immediately. But even if you're not a friend of fairy tales, classic or obscure, there are many more things to amuse and delight. If you've ever wondered, for example, if Discworld had its own Casanova, search no longer. That is all I will say on the subject because he is best enjoyed without bias. I also loved Discworld's take on racism. There is none. Because the inhabitants are too busy with speciesism, nobody cares what color your skin is, just so long as you're not a goblin. Of course, this is meant to be taken with a grain of salt, but I believe it shows Pratchett's amazing gift when hiding real- world issues in Discworld without wielding the morality hammer. Sometimes when I read his books I feel that he just gets it..."

http://tinyurl.com/mo6km7j

Blogger jennykathleen's essay comparing the Golems of Feet of Clay to the robots of the film Wall-E:

"When rereading Feet of Clay, of the Discworld series by Terry Pratchett, I realized how much the use of the golems in the book reminded me of the robots in Wall-E, especially the ways in which they interact with humans... One of the first commonalities that struck me was the subservience/dependency present in these works. It's obvious in Wall-E that the robots are a subservient working class, even though the humans would be quite helpless without them. While the humans of Discworld are less directly reliant on their golems, they still refuse to rid themselves of what they consider to be blasphemous, unnatural magic because they're just too useful to destroy. I know it's a drastic comparison to make, but it does remind me of the arguments against abolishing slavery pre-Civil War. With our current, modern morality, we know it's wrong to use people as mere tools, but where do we draw that line? Particularly intelligent animals, like dolphins and great apes? How to we prove and quantify that intelligence? Robots? Where's the sentience limit on personhood? I'm not suggesting that we start paying our Roombas wages any time soon, but I think it's something to be aware of as our technology advances and we become more aware of intelligences besides our own...

"As a linguistics major, I'm pretty biased in saying that language and communication are quite central to being human. Both the golems and the robots are limited in regards to speech, so it's interesting to see how they overcome that. The golems of Feet of Clay are built without tongues, and so do all their communication by writing on slates carries with them at all times. When a golem gains ownership of himself, he shows the first inklings of speech, but is not fully capable of it until a human rebuilds him to have a tongue (now free, speech is literally gifted unto him by his previous masters). Quite a big deal is made of this, with one antagonist calling it blasphemy. In a very poignant moment, one of the main characters responds, 'That's what people say when the voiceless speak.' The robots of Wall-E, on the other hand, are verbally capable, though presumably only the words that have been programmed into them..."

http://tinyurl.com/k2frn6r

Blogger Elle sees the City Watch stories as "morality for minors":

"I'm completely new to Terry Pratchett, but I've just read the first five books in the City Watch strand, starting with Guards! Guards!, progressing to Men at Arms and Feet of Clay, and finishing up with Jingo and The Fifth Elephant. It's smart and funny stuff. The satire gets better, more focused, as he goes along; in Guards! Guards! and Men at Arms there is a generalized sense of poking fun at petty-mindedness, smallness, meanness; but this is as much as to say that he is satirizing humanness. Which isn't to say that Pratchett doesn't come out with some damning one-liners... Pratchett writes this: 'Dorfl was standing at bay at the end of the alley. Three men with hammers were approaching the golem cautiously, in the way of mobs, each unwilling to strike the first blow in case the second blow came right back at him. The golem was crouching back, shielding itself with its slate on which was written: I AM WORTH 530 DOLLARS.' It tries to save itself by telling its value–but its value is literal. Its only chance is to prove that it is worth money, because that is all that will interest anyone in its favor. I am not sure I have ever read anything so simple, so sad and so utterly effective.

"And that's what science fiction and fantasy are for. That's what novels are for–to demonstrate human behavior without reference to the reader's own life, so that we can read it from a place of objectivity and realize the truth without becoming too self-defensive to get the message. SF and fantasy just places us on a different plane, a further level of removal. Golems don't exist in our world and so we can read about their enslavement and oppression without the line being jammed in the same way that it would be if, say, Pratchett was writing about the enslavement and oppression of people of color, or women, or women of color. We would inevitably bring to such a novel our own backgrounds, biases, guilt or shame or anger, and so on. The key to reading SF and fantasy is connecting the two, seeing the places where the social realities of the Discworld (or Middle-earth or wherever) and the real world intersect..."

http://tinyurl.com/loho6l7

Blogger inkandsteeljunkie sings the praises of Monstrous Regiment:

"You know Mulan? This book constantly reminds me of Mulan. You like Mulan? (The only answer is 'yes') You'll LOVE this book. It's a war novel from the perspective of Polly, a young girl from a small country in the Disc ‘verse. Pratchett enjoys writing all sorts of well-rounded female characters and Polly is intelligent with a good head for business and a little bit snarky. However, her brother Paul has gone missing in action after fighting in the army. Polly decides to set out and join the army in search of her brother. I refuse to give away any spoilers except that you will have Mulan in mind when you read this book (yeah, I totally used 'when' instead of 'if'). It's chock full of Pratchett's characteristic wit and humour while also being full of substance. I like to think of the book as pretty feminist friendly, as well. I highly recommend this book as a fantastic starting point for anyone curious about Terry Pratchett..."

http://tinyurl.com/ky7k8vy

Blogger Olga Godim's review of Guards! Guards! finds it triumphant but unsettling:

"Like many Pratchett's novels, this one is a contemplation of human nature, and the picture the author paints is grim. Are we all really as bad, I wonder? Is there even a shred of decency in any of us? The novel starts as a satirical farce, with a number of hysterical pages. In the beginning, I laughed myself to tears, until the mood turned midway through the novel, and I stopped laughing. Nothing the author said in the last third of the book was funny. The dragon was defeated, yes, but in Pratchett's interpretation, the implied triumph of freedom became a rather morbid study of human guile and its inescapable companion – stupidity.

"Characters are the unquestionable forte of this book, foremost of them Carrot. A star of the tale, Carrot doesn't change. Instead, he is a catalyst of change. Like a real star, he causes the others to revolve around him, to absorb his inner light and become better in the process. I'm absolutely fascinated by Carrot, and even more by the writer who invented him and put him in the middle of his very cynical series. Captain Sam Vimes and the members of his Watch are also worth mentioning. They are people ground into the dirtiest dirt by life and self-disgust and then pulled out of the gutter by Carrot. They rise to the occasion, becoming reluctant heroes. Almost. At Carrot's side, they all try to be taller, bolder, smarter. It's a fascinating metamorphosis and fun to watch – how men learn to respect themselves..."

http://tinyurl.com/k9kkn4o


Blogger ana was blown away by Nation:

"I was forewarned by friends and readers. I have read – and loved – a couple of other books by the author. So it's not like I didn't know the odds this would be good but this book? It blew my mind away. In its epilogue, Terry Pratchett says: Thinking. This book contains some. And that's true: this is one of the most think-y books I have ever read. I loved it with every fibre of my being. Nation is a book of ideas. Its main theme, that of construction and creation: the construction of a home, of a family, of rules, tradition and religion. It is about those building blocks of civilisation itself and of individuals, in a way that is both extremely rational and enormously emotional. Writing that line just now makes me realise how weird that might sound to those who haven't read the book. Above all it makes me think about how hard it is to pull something like this off and to keep a balance between what drives a story and the story itself without making a book about ideas, a book that is solely about ideas. If that makes any sense at all – I am finding it extremely hard to write this review because how do you describe perfection? Especially when it's so affecting?

"...In a way, a wave came but they are not completely marooned because they have Tradition. But does Tradition serve them at this time of need or is that now an impediment? How important is it to keep going as it 'has always been'? Or is this yet another misconception about the world? Slowly: the understanding that those are internalised voices and that questioning is good. To understand the HOW is all the more important: history becomes religion becomes tradition becomes internal rules living inside one's head... Interestingly enough, limited as my Terry Pratchett experience might be, I found Nation to be slightly different in tone (not as funny) to the other books I have read from the author but exactly the same in how smart it is..."

http://tinyurl.com/lnfdejf


Blogger thejollyape's awe-filled love letter about The Author and his work:

"This isn't simply a resonance of the 'real-world', it's its own beautifully dirty little creature with a strong heart and an independent will. The level with which I'm invested in this world is both a happy and sad thing. More than once have I wished deeply I could plan and then go on a holiday to this place. I want to smell the stench, wear the tattered clothes and watch the sites watch me. A weekend trip to Ankh-Morpork and then a week or two up north getting the experience both the urban and rural, but always making sure to cover up my jugular real well on account of liking my blood to be mostly on the inside of my veins.

As a result Terry Pratchett feels like my favourite uncle (I'm sorry, Uncle, you're still my favourite uncle when I'm not trying to make points in blog posts). I've grown up with this man always being present through his words and worlds. He's always been there to tell a good story, impress me and help me see how big the world really is by making sure I look beyond its geographical boundaries..."

http://tinyurl.com/lsgvtyq


For blogger Wendy, The Colour of Magic was only moderately magical, despite her giving it four out of five stars:

"I really liked this novel. Pratchett is an artist with the way he uses words. And this book is especially my kind of humour: raw, sarcastic. Exactly how I like it! You can view this book as a parody of fantasy and science fiction writing. Everything that's been written before by other writers is mocked. And this mocking and sarcasm is in every sentence. Nothing is ever serious... I thought there wasn't a coherent story. The novel exists of a few different parts and every part contained another encounter with something fantasy-like and a lot of indirect references. These parts didn't really fit together to form one story. I know it's part of the humour that the two travelers jump from one typical fantasystory into another, but I found it therefore very hard to really get into the story. Pratchett is great writer and I love his writing style, but I would certainly recommend another novel of the Discworld series if you wish to read one..."

http://tinyurl.com/k9kp8jj


Tellyblogger Pond TV picks Mister Teatime as one of the greatest British telly villains:

"Marc Warren channels the childlike voice of Johnny Depp's Willy Wonka, made all the more creepy with mismatched eyes and a dagger. Teatime (not pronounced like 4:00) is a psychotic assassin hired by the auditors to kill the Hogfather, but Teatime decides to take it to the next step and kill all mythological characters, including the tooth fairy, the soul cake duck, and Death, which proves difficult when he learns that Death's granddaughter is a fiery young governess by the name of Susan Sto Helit."

http://acrossthepondtv.wordpress.com/2013/09/02/top-5-villains/


Blogger Hannah's piece shows that the "Vimes Theory of Economic Injustice" holds true no less in our own universe:

"'A really good pair of leather boots, the sort that would last years and years, cost fifty dollars. This was beyond his pocket and the most he could hope for was an affordable pair of boots costing ten dollars, which might with luck last a year or so before he would need to resort to makeshift cardboard insoles so as to prolong the moment of shelling out another ten dollars. Therefore over a period of ten years, he might have paid out a hundred dollars on boots, twice as much as the man who could afford fifty dollars up front ten years before. And he would still have wet feet.'

"That's it, in a nutshell. Lower-income families have to make do with lower quality items because they simply cannot afford the initial investment required to buy something well-made that will last for years. This holds true for everything from sneakers to looseleaf binders to pencils. It's the number-one reason why I approve of teachers who simply ask for a cheque so that they can buy school supplies in bulk for the classroom. For a lot of years I was one of the kids with the 'Club Z' brand markers, and the orange one always died out half-way through colouring my Hallowe'en pumpkin. Did I want the Crayola markers? Of course I did. And my mom knew they would last longer, too. But one pack of Crayolas equaled multiple packs of El Cheapo Store Brand and with four kids guess which one we always got? My parents would inevitably spend more in total that the ones who could afford the Crayolas, and yet our markers never worked..."

http://tinyurl.com/l3vdn5o


Blogger Brendan Mancilla was somewhat puzzled by The Long Earth:

"As a novel that blends comedy, pseudo-science, and pioneer adventurism The Long Earth is, perhaps, the strangest book that I've read in a long time. It is a mixture of at least four genres that produces, maybe not too surprisingly, an equally strange novel. Almost two weeks after I finished The Long Earth I'm still grappling with my final impression of the book... I'm pretty sure I liked the book. It's fun and humorous at times, and Joshua Valiente is an extremely well-developed protagonist that I mostly approve of. The book's breakout character, of course, is Lobsang the AI who moves from machine to machine as needed. He's clever and witty and the inclusion of a non-human character allows the novel to inquire on the human condition but it never quite escapes the gimmicky feeling that stitches the book together. Boy, does it wander. Not that wandering is a bad thing since this is, at its heart, a novel about a journey with no destination. Books, however, have an end and so when The Long Earth begins the rushed approach to its own ending the experience is rushed and disconnected; surreal but relevant in a strange way. The Long Earth owns a cool premise that it loses sight of on its way to the next sequel. Not quite a disappointment, but not quite spectacular either. The best way I can phrase it is that I'm glad I picked up the book and I did enjoy it, but not enough to run out and buy book two..."

http://bmancilla.com/2013/08/29/book-review-the-long-earth/


...and blogger toppersbooks reviews Men at Arms with an eye to the issue of gun control:

"Pratchett rather brilliantly satires prejudice here – oh, not the overt prejudice that people really notice, but the little, tiny comments and attitudes that can nearly silently and subtly attack people. It's funny but very relatable. And no one is free from these attitudes – it's nice how even the best of his characters are shown to have some sort of unrealized prejudice... I think my favorite quotes were to do with the justice system and how justice ought to be served. (Vetinari is of the belief, of course, that every crime ought to have a punishment and if that punishment happens to fall upon the perpetrator of the crime, well, so much the better.) There were also some zingers about a monarchy vs. a dictatorship (Ankh-Morpork's current regime) which I thought were full of some commonly unrealized truths.

Now, Pratchett is British and he does share what I think is (but have no idea if it's true) a British dislike of guns. This is a book with the underlying message that guns are evil and shouldn't be used. (If you have a different reading, please let me know in the comments!) I'm a Texan and while I believe in reasonable laws regulating ownership of guns, I don't believe in the abolition of guns – this is one of the few subjects on which Pratchett and I disagree. It didn't take away from my appreciation of the book or from the humor; I just didn't agree with all the points he was trying to make..."

http://toppersbooks.wordpress.com/2013/08/18/men-at-arms/

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

12) CLOSE

And this month there's more to come, including a review of The Carpet People. Don't forget – you can pre-order Jack Dodger's Guide to London now! Release date is 21st November. I for one can hardly wait! For more info, and to order, go to:

http://tinyurl.com/lzvqlap

See you in two weeks or sooner...

– Annie Mac

ooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooo

———————————————————————————————————
The End. If you have any questions or requests, write: interact (at) pearwood (dot) info
———————————————————————————————————
Copyright (c) 2013 by Klatchian Foreign Legion
wossname: Clacks rendering of SPEAK HIS NAME to keep Pratchett on the Overhead (Default)
WOSSNAME

Newsletter of the Klatchian Foreign Legion


October 2013 (Volume 16, Issue 9, Post 2)

********************************************************************
WOSSNAME is a free publication for members of the worldwide Klatchian Foreign Legion and its affiliates, including the North American Discworld Society and other continental groups. Are you a member? Yes, if you sent in your name, country and e-mail address. Are there any dues? No! As a member of the Klatchian Foreign Legion, you'd only forget them...

********************************************************************
Editor in Chief: Annie Mac
News Editor: Fiona (not Bruce) Bruce
Newshounds: Vera, Mogg, Sir J of Croydon Below, the Shadow
Staff Writers: Asti, Alison Not Weatherwax, Steven D'Aprano, L.C. Wynn-Jones
Convention Reporters: Mithtrethth Hania Ogg et al
Staff Technomancer: Jason Parlevliet
Book Reviews: Drusilla D'Afanguin
Puzzle Editor: Tiff
Bard in Residence: Weird Alice Lancrevic
DW Horoscope: Lady Anaemia Asterisk, Fernando Magnifico, Kevin
Emergency Staff: Jason Parlevliet
World Membership Director: Steven D'Aprano (in his copious spare time)


Copyright 2013 by Klatchian Foreign Legion

oooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooo

INDEX:

01) LETTER FROM THE EDITOR
02) RAISING STEAM NEWS UPDATE: THE SYNOPSIS!
03) PRATCHETT AND GAIMAN "MYSTERY PROJECT"
04) PTERRY AND ALZHEIMER'S NEWS
05) SUPERFAN! AN INTERVIEW WITH PAT HARKIN
06) DISCWORLD PLAYS NEWS
07) ROUNDWORLD TALES: THE RETURN OF LESHP?!
08) DISCWORLD CONVENTION NEWS
09) MORE IMAGES OF THE MONTH
10) DISCWORLD GAMES NEWS
11) THE WOSSNAME REVIEW: THE CARPET PEOPLE
12) LATE BREAKING NEWS, AND CLOSE


oooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooo

01) A LETTER FROM YOUR EDITOR

Back again with some more news, bits, bobs, odds and sods for September... A quote to start:

"Big respect for the organist at the @OpenUniversity degree ceremony today; a fine rendition of the Imperial March!"

– Sir Pterry ptweets, and WOSSNAME congratulates him for winning yet another honorary degree (this one from the Open University)

*

Next up: the Carpet People trailer! An epic saga of miniature proportions, as they say:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=n6XSAhx6yG4

Also, for Facebook users only, a selection of stills from the DVD:

http://tinyurl.com/le42edk

*

There's a new Pratchett meeting group in Fourecks, known as Western Drummers

"Come and join the newly formed Western Drummers for their first meeting Monday 21st October 2013, Nepean Rowers Club 7.00pm."

*

Apparently Going Postal is being released in Hebrew. For the Golem readers among us, perhaps?

http://www.fantastic-library.com/?p=7821


And on we go...

– Annie Mac, Editor

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

02) RAISING STEAM NEWS UPDATE: THE SYNOPSIS!

"To the consternation of the Patrician, Lord Vetinari, a new invention has arrived in Ankh-Morpork – a great clanging monster of a machine that harnesses the power of all the elements: earth, air, fire and water. This being Ankh-Morpork, it's soon drawing astonished crowds, some of whom caught the zeitgeist early and arrived armed with note pads and very sensible rainwear.

"Moist von Lipwig is not a man who enjoys hard work – as master of the Post Office, the Mint and the Royal Bank his input is, of course, vital... but largely dependent on words, which are fortunately not very heavy and don't always need greasing. However, he does enjoy being alive, which makes a new job offer from Vetinari hard to refuse...

"Steam is rising over Discworld, driven by Mister Simnel, the man wi' t' flat cap and sliding rule who has an interesting arrangement with the sine and cosine. Moist will have to grapple with gallons of grease, goblins, a fat controller with a history of throwing employees down the stairs and some very angry dwarfs if he's going to stop it all going off the rails..."

To view this announcement on the web, in all its graphic-image-y loveliness, the procedure is the same as for the previous Raising Steam Machine announcement:

1. Go to https://www.facebook.com/hashtag/raisingsteam

2. Find the Raising Steam Machine image and click on it; this will take you to
https://www.facebook.com/pratchett?sk=app_190322544333196&app_data

3. When the Raising Steam Machine page loads, click on the "Press" button above the words "Ticket available"

4. A "ticket" will appear – click on it. This will take you to a new page which is your "Ticket". Copy the number to the right of the words "Use this ticket number as your password" (this time the number is 6819), then click on "click here". This will take you to http://terrypratchett.co.uk/?p=2724

5. Click on the "The list can be viewed here" hyperlink. This will take you to the announcement!

Remember, to pre-order Raising Steam from Amazon UK in hardcover at a special-offer price, go to:

http://tinyurl.com/qxmh87w

%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%
THE REST OF THIS ISSUE IS UNDER THE CUT. CLICK HERE TO READ! )

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