wossname: (what duck)
"Ave bossa nova, similis bossa seneca!"

   – Mr Slant, a noted lawyer of extremely long tenure, who knows about this sort of thing

Note: original image, from art by Paul Kidby for the Discworld trading cards series, can be found at the Discworld.com website
wossname: (GNU Terry Pratchett)
   It's less than a year since Sorin Suciu and Laura May first put out the call for submissions to a planned anthology of short stories on the theme of memory, with a bonus angle of humour, to raise funds for Alzheimer's Research UK as a loving memorial to the life and work of Sir Terry Pratchett. The response was immediate and wide-ranging, with stories offered by amateur and professional writers alike, and the final result – In Memory: A Tribute to Sir Terry Pratchett – has been praised by no less a luminary of humour fiction than Robert Rankin.

   Although I've spent many years reviewing Pratchett novels and associated Discworld "spinoff" books, map(p)s and other auxiliaries, I was unsure how to go about reviewing In Memory. But then I realised that the kernel of this review was already in the book itself, in an afterword by Charlotte Slocombe, author of Bubble Trouble, thirteenth story in this anthology: "Thank you for buying this book, because you never know who you might be saving." And there you have it. In Memory is a unique work, created as a combination tribute to Sir Terry Pratchett and as fundraising "merch" for the benefit of Alzheimer's Research UK. By purchasing a copy of In Memory, you're helping to keep the name of one of our most (rightly!) beloved authors alive in the world of literature and donating to a worthy and vital cause, but the glow of a good deed done isn't the only thing you'll come away with – because you'll also have the pleasure of reading a collection of seventeen bloody fine stories.

   I really mean it. No lemonade is being squeezed here.

   Given the at best variable quality of fan-generated writings, my expectations of In Memory were not exactly high. But I have to say that I was more than pleasantly surprised – far more, in fact. The quality of the writing is high throughout. The least polished of these stories is worthy of being commercially published, but in my opinion there are several standouts that deserve special mention:

"Thanks for the Memory Cards" by Luke Kemp would make for a brilliant short film in the hands of Simon Pegg, Nick Frost and Edgar Wright.

DK Mok's "The Heart of the Labyrinth" offers the kind of stealth philosophy, cloaked in the tropes of fantasy and mythology, of which Sir Pterry would have been proud.

"The Tale of the Storyteller" by Caroline Friedel is one of the sweetest tributes to our favourite author that I have yet seen.

In "The Vividarium", Steven McKinnon takes on Asimov and Clarke's clumsy attempts at humour and infuses them with a genuine sense of fun.

"Ackerley's Genuine Earth Antiques" by Michael K Schaefer upholds – proudly – the stylistic traditions of Fritz Leiber and Anthony Boucher with a light dusting of Connie Willis.

Co-editor Sorin Suciu's "Doris" is a classy enough tale to easily pass as golden-age Larry Niven.

   Also, kudos go to editors May and Suciu for delivering an almost unblemished example of careful proofreading (with the exception of the most chortle-inducing uncaught mistype since the Wicked Bible of 1631 – it's on page 264, in case you wondered), which is rare these days even in the output of major publishing houses.

   Each story is followed by an afterword from its author, giving a brief overview of how it came into being and, of course, giving respect to Sir Pterry for inspiring them. The book is printed on decent quality paper and has a handsome cover – again, of a much higher quality than one might expect of a charity project. But most impressive of all, in my opinion, is that this collection represents a true labour of love. Nowhere did I find the slightest whiff of "I'm doing this to get my name out there in the industry" or "I'm doing this to make money". All seventeen authors – and the many others whose submissions couldn't be squeezed in – wrote their stories as a mark of the respect and admiration they felt for Sir Pterry, and as a way to give back for the joy his work brought into their lives. That kind of honesty is rarer than ye olde pearl of great price.

   To all of you out there who say you want to keep Terry Pratchett's name alive forever "in the Overhead", I say buy this book, because the more money is raised for research into Alzheimer's Disease and other forms of dementia, the closer we'll get to stopping or even reversing the ravages of the awful thief of memory... and the more of us will never forget him. The people who put their hearts and time into this project hope to raise £6,500 for Alzheimer's Research UK; so far, almost £1,100 has been raised. Let's all go for it, hmm?

Editor's note:
Prices for In Memory: A Tribute to Sir Terry Pratchett range from $13.99 on CreateSpace (_https://www.createspace.com/5759638_) down to $6.29 for a Kindle edition (_http://www.amazon.com.au/dp/B0163JZBLE?tag=sorsuc-20_). The ISBN is 1517603609, should you wish to source it elsewhere.

To read about the step-by-step making of this book, go to http://inmemorytribute.com/blog/

Also, check out these links:
wossname: (GNU Terry Pratchett)
Do you want a newly discovered Roundworld element named for the colour of magic? Of course you do!

An exciting surprise on Change.org...

"Petitioning IUPAC and 2 others

"Name new element 117 Octarine, in honour of Terry Pratchett's Discworld

"This petition is to name element 117, recently confirmed by the International Union of Applied Chemistry, as 'Octarine', with the proposed symbol Oc (pronounced 'ook'), in honour of the late Terry Pratchett and his Discworld series of books... a particularly pleasing choice because, not only would it honour a world-famous and much-loved author, but it also has an 'ine' ending, consistent with the other elements in period 17. Octarine is being counted as 'a mythological concept' under IUPAC rules, which state that elements must be named after "a mythological concept or character; a mineral, or similar substance; a place or geographical region; a property of the element; or a scientist". The Discworld stories are certainly stories about gods and heroes..."

To read the full petition, and to sign if you wish to, go to chn.ge/1mHR3dY

It's also been tweeted by Rob Wilkins, with the link, at https://twitter.com/terryandrob/status/684845900489977856 where Twitter account-holders can add a comment.

Thanks to Sir Jase of ozdw for the heads-up!
wossname: (Rats!)
Get your Feegle on, O Thespians of Fourecks' state of South Australia! Unseen Theatre's next Discworld play will NOT be Feet of Clay – instead, they have been given permission to stage the first Tiffany Aching novel, The Wee Free Men!

"What makes The Wee Free Men so wonderful is Pratchett's ability to make realistic, human characters in the middle of an otherwise zany world."

"There is such humanity and feeling in the undercurrents of this book that you won' be able to help but be taken back to your own childhood moments that have remained untainted by the harsh reality of adulthood."

The play will run from 15th to 30th April 2016 – but first, a cast is needed. Director Pamela Munt says, "Roles available: Too wide and varied to mention. Just come along if you are interested."

Auditions info:

When: Sunday 29th November 2015
Venue: Bakehouse Theatre, 255 Angas Street, Adelaide
Time: 5pm

Rehearsals will be held each week on Tuesday, Thursday and Sunday evenings, running to this schedule:

December 8th to 20th (Christmas break)
Jan 3rd to Feb 11th (Fringe break)
March 15th to April 14th (Production Week commences Sunday April 10th)

If you are interested in auditioning, contact Pamela Munt at pamela@unseen.com.au to let her know. "No appointment time is necessary because the auditions will be run in a group format. BUT we do need an idea of numbers."

To view the Unseen Theatre's Facebook page, go to http://on.fb.me/1NRYGVH
wossname: (GNU Terry Pratchett)
The sixth official Australian Discworld convention aka Nullus Anxietas VI – The Discworld Grand Tour – will take place at the Lakes Resort Hotel, West Lakes, Adelaide, South Australia on 4-6 August 2017. Read on...

Announcing The Discworld Grand Tour!
Ladies, Gentlemen, Dwarfs, Trolls, Vampires, Werewolves, Goblins, Feegles, sundry others and Nobby Nobbs – the Ankh-Morpork Tourism Board invites you to a journey of wonder, whimsy, and, er, wossname at *Nullus Anxietas VI – The Discworld Grand Tour – The Australian Discworld Convention.*

The Discworld Grand Tour will be held on 4th-6th August 2017 at the Lakes Resort Hotel, Adelaide, South Australia. This convention will be a way to escape on a luxurious trip to the Discworld to enjoy three (or four) fabulous days of fun and frivolity with your fellow fans of the late, great Sir Terry Pratchett.

Our wonderful new website has just launched and can be found at https://ausdwcon.org
Please visit the site to read all about the upcoming convention and to book your tickets!

Let Rincewind tell you all about it: https://youtu.be/j80m1JdktQA

Terry Pratchett Folio Special Offer
Thanks to the kind generosity of Rob Wilkins, the first 50 people to purchase tickets to Nullus Anxietas VI will receive a very special gift – a limited edition Terry Pratchett Folio, containing some short writings by our very favourite author. These have only been previously available to attendees at the UK Discworld Convention in 2014, at Nullus Anxietas V in 2015 and for a very short time at Discworld.com. This is your chance to get one of the few remaining copies, simply by buying your ticket to Nullus Anxietas VI!

For more information, see https://ausdwcon.org/shop/folio-special-offer/

HO! HO! HO! Buy your loved one a Hogswatch present!
Also now available in the Australian Discworld Convention shop are Hogswatch Presents – vouchers you can buy for a friend or loved one which they can use at a later date to buy their Nullus Anxietas VI ticket! This is a special limited-time sale – Hogswatch Presents will only be available until December 20th.

Meet your fellow tourists
You can find out more about Nullus Anxietas VI – The Discworld Grand Tour – The Australian Discworld Convention and chat with other potential tourists at:

Website: https://ausdwcon.org
Facebook page: https://facebook.com/Ausdwcon
Facebook group: https://facebook.com/groups/ausdwcon2017
Twitter: https://twitter.com/ausdwcon

Editor's note: the image below is the property of the Australian Discworld Convention folks. Be sure to visit their website to see it in its proper place!

wossname: (Anthill inside)
Starting this evening (UK time) on BBC Radio 4 Extra, a six-part adaptation starring Martin Jarvis, John Wood and Melvyn Hayes. Each episode is 30 minutes long and will be available internationally for several weeks after broadcast. Check it out!

http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b00fgszb (episodes 1 and 2)

http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b007jmk0 (episodes 3 through 6)
wossname: (GNU Terry Pratchett)
I'm tremendously grateful to Terry for the chances he gave me, for the opportunity he gave me to change my life in ways I couldn't possibly imagine. – Stephen Briggs

Here be a wonderful video of Mr Briggs at Sir Terry's home, talking about their 25-year collaboration and how it changed his world:


The video can also be accessed via http://www.shakespearecodex.co.uk/ – click on the orangeish button on the lower left of the homepage.

Many thanks go to Mr Briggs for this gift to the fans!
wossname: (Anthill inside)
According to Rob Wilkins, so it must be true...

Lovely celebratory art by hump_day:

wossname: (Anthill inside)

From The Random House Group (UK):

Unseen University are proud to present the most comprehensive map and guide to the Disc yet produced. In this noble endeavour, drawing upon the hard won knowledge of many great and, inevitably, late explorers, one may locate on a detailed plan of our world such fabled realms as the Condiment Isles, trace the course of the River Kneck as it deposits silt and border disputes in equal abundance on the lands either side, and contemplate the vast deserts of Klatch and Howondaland -- a salutary lesson in the perils of allowing ones goats to graze unchecked.

This stunning work brings to life the lands and locations of the Discworld stories in a way never seen before. Accompanied by lavish full-colour illustrations and a detailed world map, this is a must-have for any Discworld fan.

Published by Doubleday, part of Transworld Publishers
Format: Hardback
Available to pre-order for 22 Oct 2015
Priced at £25.00

The page includes a direct Buy Now button


From Penguin Random House Canada:

The Compleat Discworld Atlas
Of General & Descriptive Geography Which Together With New Maps and Gazetteer Forms a Compleat Guide to Our World & All It Encompasses

A brand-new and fully illustrated traveller's guide to Terry Pratchett's extraordinary and magical creation: the Discworld.

Painstakingly compiled under the aegis of the Unseen University's Department of Cruel and Unusual Geography, The Discworld Atlas is a glorious travellers' guide to the marvellous world created by Sir Terry Pratchett. Drawing on myriad sources -- from explorers' journals and prospectors' maps to archives of the great libraries and reports of merchants and missionaries alike -- this stunning work brings to life the lands and locations of the Discworld stories in a way never seen before. Accompanied by lavish full-colour illustrations and a detailed world map, this is a must-have for any Discworld fan.

Available November 24, 2015
Priced at $42.00 (CAD) "subject to change"

The Atlas can be re-ordered from McNally Robinson and Chapters-Indigo; just click on the name of the company in the box on the right-hand side of the page.



wossname: Clacks rendering of SPEAK HIS NAME to keep Pratchett on the Overhead (Default)

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