Better Than

Discworld Monthly - Issue 30 : October 1999

Table of Contents:

1. Editorial
2. News
3. Readers' Letters
4. Recommendations
5. DiscTrivia
6. Feature: Wow Wow Sauce Recipe
7. Review: The Fifth Elephant
8. Feature: What If Disney Did Discworld? - Part 3
9. The End

1. Editorial

Welcome to issue 30. Unfortunately due to bad typing Terry will not be doing a singing tour in November. He has, however, been convinced that a signing tour should take place. Dates are available from Clarecraft's web site at

Jason Anthony (Editor)
William Barnett (Deputy Editor)
Richard Massey (Sub-standard Editor)

2. News

The Wyrd Sisters video is now out in the US, you can find more information at

Terry Pratchett will be appearing at the Gateway Convention in St. Louis, July 14-16, 2000. There will be Discworld programming, including a possible live action Discworld game, a Cripple Mr. Onion teaching session & tourney plus the hospitality suite will be set up as the Broken Drum. The website is:

Sussex Stationers are reserving copies of the forthcoming Discworld novel "The Fifth Elephant" for 9.99GBP (16.99GBP RRP). The book is due in November and Sussex Stationers have 40 branches throughout Sussex and into Kent and Surrey.

On 28 October Collins & Brown are publishing an A4 Paper Tiger paperback book containing Josh's recent Discworld and other pictures. This is a successor to "The Garden of Unearthly Delights" and "Josh Kirby Discworld Portfolio" to be entitled "A Cosmic Cornucopia" with text by Dave Langford, price 14.99GBP. Details can be found on their web site at The book can be ordered from 1855857316/87

Last month "Jeff Turner" wanted to find Josh Kirby's pictures from the covers of the Discworld Novels. The Discworld Portfolio can be ordered from Amazon at 1850282595/87

There will be a Josh Kirby exhibition at Dragon Hall, King Street, Norwich from 1st-17th October 1999. It's part of the Norfolk and Norwich fringe festival. The halls open from 10am-4pm Mon-Sat. It only costs 1.50GBP (1GBP concs/50p kids) to get in. More information is available from

Cheltenham Little Theatre presents Mort, directed by Nick Mazonwicz from 23-30th October 1999 at the Playhouse Theatre, Bath Road, Cheltenham, GL53 7HG. Tickets are 7GBP and the box office is open 10am-4pm daily, telephone 01242-522852. More information is available from Nick Mazonowicz ( ).

So What Press are currently working on an unofficial "Discworld: The Gathering" trading card game, based, (surprisingly) on the popular Magic: The Gathering. For information concerning this new game, contact Samual ( ) or (

"Mark Jackson" ( ) has created a new version of his program SmartQuote, which includes several hundred Discworld Quotes at The program works on any Windows 95/98/NT machines. You can also find the same quotes at our random quotes page at

Last month we mentioned an Assassins Guild Club web site. It appears as if there is more than one of them. You can also find Assassins Clubs at and

To combat the rise in the number of Assassins Guilds "Commander Vimes" is looking for new members for his Watch Club at

A new theatre company in South Africa called "Unseen Theatre Company" intends to produce "Mort" early next year. They are looking for any fan clubs in South Africa who might be interested, email ( )

Small Ads....

"Emma Scott" ( ) is totally stuck on Discworld Noir and the last clues she picked up were a trolls tooth, a fabric scrap and the fact that saphie lied. Please help. is a 26 year old Italian who'd like to exchange emails with people about the Discworld.

Kathleen ( ) is 19yrs old and has not read any of the Discworld books yet but needs to be swayed. She says: please send all of your funny jokes and non Discworld related trivia. Then I might be talked into reading one.

"Paul Corrish" ( ) runs a Discworld Club that reviews Discworld web sites at [Wonder what they'll think of the Discworld Monthly site? - Ed]

"Ellen" is looking for an e-pal any age between 13 and 20 or anyone who doesn't mind writing to a 15 year old and rambles on about nearly anything. It would be perefered if they like any of the following: X Files, Due South, South Park and to some degree Start Trek.

"Ilia Markov" is looking for friends to chat about Terry Pratchett, soccer, music and other things. Email: ICQ: 22102695

"Rob Westwood" ( ) has a walkthrough guide to Discworld Noir if anyone wants it.

"Andrew Badge" ( ) wants to know where to get a Discworld Screensaver.

"Alex" ( ) would like anyone who has any Clarecraft Discworld figures they would like to sell for a reasonable price to get in contact.

"Graham McCormick" ( ) has a new web site called "The Little Guys" at

"Emma Scott" ( ) is looking for Discworld 1 for the PC in the north of England, if anyone's willing to part with it at a reasonable price.

"Andrew Rogan" ( ) would like to get in touch with Discworld fans of the female persuasion from the Sheffield Area, preferably aged between 19 and 22 for long "discussions" in the pub. Being single would be an advantage. [As would having large breasts we expect - The Editorial Team]

"Robert Icke" ( ) is looking for an e-pal aged between 11 and 14 who enjoys the books and games. He has a PSX.

"Linus Engback" ( ) is looking for the first four hardback Discworld Novels published in Swedish. He has the others, but these seem hard to find.

3. Readers' Letters

If you have any letters/comments, please email

We assume any correspondence is eligible for use in the newsletter unless otherwise stated, including the sender's email address. We may also edit your letters to steer them away from suggesting actors to play Discworld characters.

Each month the writer of the month's best letter will receive two Discworld badges with PTerry quotes on them from Snapdragon Gifts. You can contact Snapdragon Gifts at or Please mention DWM in any correspondence.

* From: "Matt Jones" ( )
I have to say that I definitely agree with Shobhana that a list of actors to play roles from PTerry books would be a great new feature.

Why should it need an English Natalie Portman to play Susan? Surely she could just put on an English accent? If that isn't enough and you want her on a technicality then I would happily marry her to allow her to be a part of it!

Personally I think Sean Connery is a great actor but he really couldn't play Death, at least not in my mind - for god's sake Death was born in Glasgow! (and if anyone comes back with "Death wasn't born anywhere" I'm not gonna be happy 'cos it'll make you a certified smart-arse)

My biggest recommendation would be for Pete Postelthwaite to play Vimes. He is a great actor with just the right amount of background anti-authoritarianism in him to make it interesting. Maybe he'd have to change his accent and he may be a little too old but beggars can't be choosers.

* From: "Elizabeth Wadsworth" ( )
I have always envisioned Esme Weatherwax as resembling Maggie Smith. (Just for the record, I see Nanny Ogg and Magrat Garlick as being portrayed by Mollie Sugden and Carol Kane, respectively.) I await other opinions with interest.

* From: "Negetive Angel" ( )
I was having a look at Discworld sites and I found the following one was brilliant. They have a short summary of all the books (in order), info about characters and "The Hedgehog can never be buggered" in its entirety. The address is

* From: "Lisa WilliamsCraig" ( )
To anyone in America who has had trouble finding various Pratchett volumes:

After a long and frustrating search, my husband and I have finally located a bookshop in California that is a large-scale Purveyor of Pratchett (or Batshitt, as we affectionately refer to him). This shop, "Dark Carnival", not only has multiple copies of the complete Discworld series (even the hard-to-find ones), but all the "other" books, too, as well as all the maps, illustrated diaries, and audio cassettes. They take credit cards and I believe they can ship. 3086 Claremont Ave., Berkeley, CA. 510-595-7637.

* From: "Doug Tabacco" ( )
To Kristen Ostapowich, who says l-space exists in the library where she works: I think I happened upon your library while shelving books at the library where I work in California one day :)

Nice place, but they said you hadn't worked there for 53 years. I guess going past the cookbooks was a bad idea.

* From: "Simon Crowe" ( )
This Gonne debate has gone on for a few months now, and the thing all the writers have missed is that it goes off 7 times, twice. As well as the times mentioned, which is presumably after Cruces reloads, it goes off 7 times in the sewers:

Any arguments with this one?

* From: "mike vidler" ( )
I've seen a lot of complaints from American Pratchett fans regarding the difficulty in finding the newer and more obscure books in the States. Well, for all you Americans (and Canadians too, for that matter), has a great selection, and the shipping costs aren't nearly as high as ordering from the UK. In fact, for Canadians, shipping is often free - just keep your eye out for the monthly specials, or go into a Chapters store and order online from one of the kiosks there. They're pretty fast, and I've never had any credit card problems, security-wise. I realise this sounds a bit like an advertisement, but really, I'm just a humble Pratchett fan who was glad to find a great selection on this continent!

* From: "Mountaineer" ( )
With reference to "as_above_so_belows" letter last month:

"Terry, what were you thinking?" What sort of a line is that? It was stated right from the beginning that Discworld Noir was a p**s take of Noir films in the Discworld spirit. And in a Discworld setting. If you are upset that this latest game doesn't once again see Rincewind clicking the shark on the rope in a feeble attempt to cut it then you should have read a review or at least the cover of the box.

There appears to be a big thing at the moment that PTerry seems to be just cashing in on "this Discworld thing" and "ripping other people off" with resonances such as the smurfs etc. Terry Pratchett writes humourous stories that are full of echoes of all the half forgotten things bumbling around in your head. No one is forcing you to buy his books. Indeed if you believe the rumours most of his fans steal the books anyway... I don't mind paying $15 a book, $25 a video and $80 a game because to me it is worth it. If you bought the game and suddenly found it wasn't what you were expecting then you shouldn't blame PTerry for a bad product but blame yourself for not finding out what it was about first.

* From: "Probyn m. Steer" ( )
Thank you very much for advertising our presentation of "Men At Arms" in Canberra recently.

Your support got (to our knowledge) four people who between them traveled over 1300 Km to see the play, I hope they got value.

It was a presentation fraught by difficulties!

The actor who was to be "Carrot" contracted Tonsilitis and Glandular Fever two weeks before the planned opening date, he was also the designer!! He was also the "model-maker"!

The Director's wife's mother died on the opening night; the Director went into heart spasm (having had a heavy heart operation the year before).

We all went on and did it - p'rbly to about 70% of what we wanted to do for a T.P. presentation; BUT did he write the problems in for us???

Two week presentation in Canberra - Final three nights sold out with a LOT of Pratchett converts! Wot about next year then??

I want to do Pratchett's version of "The Phantom" Wot Yer Fink??

JA Replies: Wot We Fink is, Probyn should get this months Letter Of The Month.

* From:
I just finished reading Lords and Ladies and was wondering if there really is a song called "A Wizard's Staff Has a Knob on the End", which Nanny Ogg likes to sing in the bathtub. Is it based on a real song, and does it have lyrics, or is it just a suggestion of a bawdy song that Nanny would like?

JA Replies: You can find most of the lyrics to the popular Discworld songs on the l-space website at

* From: "Dote Stone" ( )
Now I don't want anyone to think that I'm a nit-picking, anal-retentive person with no life. I would like to state before going any further that I like all the books, own two of the games, maps and wall posters. However I feel that the DWM could profit from a little aimless discussion on what PTerry thinks of the musicals of Lloyd Webber.

I personally cannot stand the works he churns out far too often for my liking, but in Maskerade PTerry seems to give him a favourable review. Does anyone agree that perhaps he was mistaken? I do realise that the whole point of Maskerade is a take off of "Phantom" but in my opinion the musicals Lloyd Webber produces are not even worth taking off (though I admit PTerry did a good job with bad material).

* From: "Chell, A (Anna)" ( )
In response to Lisa Usher: You are talking rubbish. You may at one point have been able to order any Terry Pratchett video from HMV or Woolies (part of the same chain), but you can no longer do this. They have been deleted. For anyone who wants copies of the videos try "The Film Vault Service", which specializes in finding deleted films. I did when I tried to get a copy of Wyrd Sisters for my Dad's Birthday (after taking Lisa's advice and wasting time with HMV and Woolies etc.). The videos are apparently extremely rare - they currently have no copies available, and there is a waiting list for copies that do come in - it is at least 10 people long. So to conclude: Woolies and HMV, Heffers Video, Virgin, The Film Vault, and even the classifieds, do not have any copies of these videos. If anyone finds them elsewhere I would be intrigued to know.

* From: "Oly Brown" ( )
Now look, I'm a Discworld fan, I read the books, I attended the Clarecraft Event, I've even met the man himself a few times. But (could there ever be such a more feared word as 'but'?), like so many before him, PTerry (Why do you call him that? Why don't you just call him TerryP? Why do you make everything so confusing? You're hurting my brain!) has made the mistake of labeling everything associated with Heavy Metal as dunce (see Soul Music, and the exploits of Skazz and co). I would like to point out that, as a Metal fan myself, I do not feel inclined to hang myself with barbwire or chew off my own tongue (not what PTerry was saying, but the stereotype Marilyn Manson fan). Please remember that not only do bands such as Paradise Lost and Machine Head write their own material unlike these teenie-bopping alco-poppers, but also that Metal is one of the most challenging forms of music to write and play. Tah very much, no insults to anyone intended.

WB replies: and where do you think the editorial staff of DWM will be on the evening of the third of December, then?

4. Recommendations

In order to reduce the size of the letters section with large letters recommending other authors we thought we'd keep things simple by listing the name of the person doing the recommendation and the recommendation itself. As a result, we've stopped receiving recommendations, which REALLY reduces the size of this section.

Discworld Fan Author
Roy SteadCaptain Cobwebb books by Gordon Boshell

There is a list of comic-fantasy authors at

5. DiscTrivia

Well, the results are in from last month's poll - and it looks as if Small Gods, Guards Guards, Mort, Wyrd Systers and Reaper Man are definitely the books to start people off with, mainly because they introduce new characters and can be read as stand-alone experiences.

However, I decided to give the title of best reason to J. Quincy Morrissey of Scotland, who recommended Men At Arms. The reason given was as follows...

"It has the exact feel of all later Discworld books, Terry's views on people, it shows what a horrific weapon the gun really is. By immersing you perfectly in a centuries-ago world, he can really express the contrast between traditional weapons like the bow and arrow and such an impersonal weapon as the gun."

Thankyou to everyone who entered and I'll be back with more trivia next month.

- Danu Poyner ( ) Brisbane, Australia

6. Feature: Wow Wow Sauce Recipe

"Craig Greenock" discovered this recipe for the Archancellors favourite hang over cure.

From: Farmhouse Cookery, Recipes from the Country Kitchen By Molly Harrison, Reader's Digest(!) 1980, 1982

I was flicking through the above mentioned, as you do, when I came across this on page 151...

Wow Wow Sauce

Created by Dr. William Kitchiner (d. 1827) of whom an obituarist and friend wrote, "to invent odd things and give them odd names was his special hobby". The recipe (below) was first published in 1817 in "The Cook's Oracle". Ms Harrison doesn't name the author of the "Oracle", but there is a photograph of the relevant page (244). Wow Wow Sauce is noted as being a Home Counties recipe.

The version in "Farmhouse Cookery" is, using Imperial measures, as follows...

*There's a cross reference within Farmhouse cookery to a stock
recipe but why not experiment? I rather think that Dr Kitchiner would have.

Melt the butter in the pan over a low heat then stir in the flour and cook gently for 2 to 3 minutes. Add the stock gently, stirring all the while to prevent lumps forming.

When the sauce is smooth and creamy add the vinegar, mustard and ketchup (or port). Simmer the whole until it reaches a consistency that you like and then stir in the chopped parsley and walnuts.

Heat through for another minute or so and serve hot with boiled beef, lamb chops or venison.

For what it's worth the following comments can be made out from the photograph of the original recipe. "If you think the above not sufficiently piquante add to it some capers or a minced Eschalot (?spelling) or a half teaspoon Eschalot wine - or essence of Anchovy - or (illegible) - or tarragon or horseradish or burnt (caramelised?) vinegar.

No I don't know what an 'Eschalot' is either. The only guess I have is it's an older spelling of shallot (scallion), but Eschalot Wine rather undermines that hypothesis.

Sceptics can have a photocopy of the relevant page from Ms Harrison's weighty and authoritative tome.

7. Review: The Fifth Elephant

The Fifth Elephant is Terry's 24th Discworld Novel and like Carpe Jugulum involves the inhabitants of Uberwald. This time it's Sam Vimes chance to save the day.

I hope it's not giving too much away to make the point that the fifth elephant itself doesn't actually feature in this book at all. Although it is mentioned on a number of occasions. Judging by the cover I'd expected a terrifying finale where the elephant almost obliterates a swathe of Ankh-Morpork or something, but this is not in fact the case. What a missed opportunity.

Instead, the novel sees Vimes and his spouse paying a visit to Uberwald. It has to be said that the pretext for this journey is pretty thin; PTerry clearly wanted to develop the intriguing hints we've heard about Uberwald from the last few books (I seem to recall the Witches flying over a prototype Uberwald en route to Genua, fact fans). The exciting dual plot lines take shape as follows: Vimes versus werewolves in Uberwald, contrasted with Sergeant Colon's hilarious mismanagement of the Watch in his chief's absence. Am I the only one who's starting to feel that a Discworld book with just one continuous narrative stream might be an exciting novelty?

That said, The Fifth Elephant is superb. Obviously, we all enjoy different aspects of PTerry's work and all that, but this one kept me interested more successfully than any for quite some time. The Fifth Elephant is by no means stuffed with uproariously funny gags, but the pacing of the story fills in where the humour thins out.

An excellent read, distinguished by the skill with which PTerry maintains the tension throughout. Many Discworld books, Moving Pictures and Hogfather to name but two, attempt to use an air of menace to drive the story. Where most of the earlier books fail in this respect I feel The Fifth Elephant succeeds, without spoiling our enjoyment of the lighter, comical side of the story.

The Fifth Elephant is due for release in November in the UK, priced around 16.99GBP. You can pre-order it NOW from, by visiting: 0385409958/87

8. Feature: What If Disney Did Discworld? - Part 3

Anthea Swee Chin Tan writes a warning about too much commercialism in Discworld. Can you imagine a world where Disney produces Discworld Musicals?

The feature below is a comedic work of complete fiction based on Men at Arms. If you haven't read Men at Arms don't read this. To the best of our knowledge Disney is not planning to make a Discworld musical.

[Continued from issue 27]

Another scene with Carrot and Angua strolling through the city. (This is to make up for the bedroom scene which has to be cut out along with 'nipples' for a G rating.) and they sing - yes! You guessed it! - the obligatory love ballad: (any similarity to any Disney ballad is entirely intentional)

Carrot: I can show you this town,
Shining, shimmering splendid
Tell me, Angua have you ever
Had sausages in a bun from Dibbler
Let me open your eyes
Take you wonder by wonder
Angua: You mean, blunder by blunder
Together: Ankh-Morpork is a pearl!
Carrot: A whole new world!
Angua: A piece of dirt covered by the secretions of a dying mollusc
Carrot: I'll take you anywhere
If time will spare
Let me share
This whole new world with you
Angua: In this Discworld,
Here's where you'll be
So here I'll stay
I'll never stray
Together: Just you and me

At that moment, the moon comes out and Angua becomes a wolf.

[ shallow adaptation of plot goes even further]

A short reprise with Vimes and Sybil:

Vimes: Let me show you this town
Slimy festering wastelands
The crud of humanity badlands
and that's just the upper class
Sybil: A whole new world
That's where we'll be,
Vimes: A thrilling place?
Sybil: A wondrous place
Together: Far from this city...

[shallow adaptation of plot advances]

Now it is time for the obligatory villain song. Without giving too much away for people who haven't read the book yet, the villain berates his accomplice (or could be the other way around depending on how you look at it):

Villain: You fool! you small minded fool!
You only think of personal revenge.
With me - you can accomplish so much more.
So much so that ultimate glory and victory
can be yours and then - you will be able to do as
you please...

With a movement of your finger
As you gently squeeze the trigger
Glory, fame and fortune can be ours

As you wait in this tower
Can't you feel and taste the power?
Glory, fame and fortune is all ours

Your target below cannot see you,
But he'll feel it when the bullet pierces his
Bones and sinew

Long live the King!
Long live the King!
But the glory, fame and fortune is all yours!

*evil laughter*

And of course, it is a happy ending. And time for the obligatory reprise of the opening song:

Vimes: (spoken) the city is like a woman,
you can't help falling in love with her,
but she'll string you along,
and kick you in the teeth

Then just when you hate her and think that you're over her,
She'll open her heart to you and throw you off balance
Cos you know that you can't give her up
Cos she's all that you have, even her gutters...

Verse: start spreading the news
I ain't leaving today
I'll always be a part of it
Ankh-Morpork, Ankh-Morpork
these leather bound shoes,
I'm giving away
I must feel the cobbles on the streets of
Ankh-Morpork, Ankh Morpork
Everyone: If you can make it there
it's illegal everywhere
It's up to you
Ankh-Morpork, Ankh-Morpork

lots of fireworks, crowds cheering, people waving and divers alarums


Other potential songs (which I can't bother writing words to) could include:

He's our Pest (like Be our Guest) - when the watch is introducing Nobby to the new recruits

Colours of the Smell - Angua sings about what it's like being a wolf to an intolerant Carrot

One-Two-Many - the Detritus and Cuddy conga counting song

9. The End

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