Better Than

Discworld Monthly - Issue 104: December 2005

Table of Contents:

1. Editorial
2. News
3. Readers' Letters
4. DiscTrivia
5. Review: Lords and Ladies in XXXX
6. Competitions
7. Review: Maskerade - Live in Newport.
8. Comparison: Rob Anybody and Daft Wullie bronze Nac Mac Feegles.
9. The End

1. Editorial

Welcome to issue 104. This will be the last issue of 2005 so we would once again like to wish you a very merry end of year holiday, and hope that 2006 brings you everything you could want.

I'll be heading down to Wincanton on the 2nd December for Bernard's annual Hogswatch event. If you get down to Wincanton that weekend give me a wave.

Don't forget to look out for the new series of Johnny and the Bomb on BBC television starting 8th January. More information can be found at

We have in conjunction with Aurient Traders extremely limited stocks of the Bronze Nac Mac Feegle sets available via eBay. The complete set cost just 209.65 GBP plus 25.35 GBP for next day courier. This is remarkable value of less than half the normal RRP. At the time of writing there were only 8 sets left.

So if you want to pick up a Nac Mac Feegle bargain, visit and search for "Discworld Monthly Offer".

Details of Rob Anybody and Daft Wullie Mac Feegle can be found in section 8 of this issue.

On response to some questions from a child worried about the missing cow, Terry supplied the following answers.

1. Is the cow lost?

'Not any more. She was found wandering and brought in to the Watch House by Corporal Nobbs.'

2. Is the cow OK?

'Oh, yes. Some watchmen have fed her chips from the canteen, but she seems fine.'

3. Is anyone looking after the cow if it is lost? (particularly worried about this one)

'Corporal Nobbs is very attached to the cow, and so are the other Watchmen. They've clubbed together to buy her hay.'

4. Where is the cow now?

'In the Watch stables, where she is spoiled rotten by the coppers. She gets milked twice a day and the coppers hope no-one ever claims her because the milk is so nice.'

5. And if at all possible, what is the cow's name? (for it looks pretty on the picture)

'Mostly they call her Cow, because coppers aren't particularly good when it comes to names, but Corporal Nobbs calls her Maisie, after his old mum.'
Jason Anthony (Editor)
William Barnett (Deputy Editor)
Richard Massey (Elderly Relative)

2. News

You may be interested in an interview recorded with Ian Stewart about the Science of Discworld series:

December's Book and Magazine Collector has Terry on its front cover. Inside there is an article about Terry and also included is a UK Bibliography with price guides. The magazine is priced 3.30 GBP. [Source: Margaret - Ed]

Artists UK Reorganises its Discworld Section

In response to the wishes of the avid Discworld collectors amongst Artists UK customers the standard prints have now been divided up not by subject but by the publishing batch they belong to so that each type is grouped together. Now you can be sure you are buying matching ones (or ones that match to the ones you already have) by just comparing the image sizes. Links to each of the three new sections are as follows. Just click on one of the links below to go there .....

Series 1

Series 3

Once in the Catalogue just click the Back button to go back to the main section headings. The Limited Editions and Artist Proofs are still on this link -

Limited Editions

You can assume that any Discworld products available to add to your cart on the website are in stock and will be despatched within one week of ordering. We will be shipping up to 21st December but overseas customers will need to order earlier to be sure of the sound of a lovely Thud of a package on the floor before Christmas. If you have any questions then E-Mail us via the link on the website.

Work has been progressing on the Troll Bridge Movie. A lot of work has been done on the animation of Mica. Mica has been modelled and animated by Blochi at Eden FX in LA and looks amazing.
If you are a Troll Bridge member you can see a sample of this stunning animation at

Discworld Dates...

This section will contain events that you need to keep in your diary. Entries will remain until they go out of date. New entries will include the word [New] next to them. If this section gets too large we will start pruning entries.

[New, AU] Unseen Theatre Company will be producing Going Postal from November 25 to December 10 (Wednesdays to Saturdays @ 8pm) at Bakehouse Theatre, 255 Angas St. Adelaide

Tickets cost 16AUD Adults, 13AUD Concessions, 10 AUD Groups (10+). More information: Bookings: 82270505

[UK] Chelmsford Theatre Workshop will be performing Maskerade this Christmas, from 20th to 24th and 27th to 31st December, all at 7.45 pm (except for the 24th, which is a 2.00 pm matinee only).

The venue is The Old Court Theatre, 233 Springfield Road, Chelmsford, Essex (opposite the prison), and tickets for 6 GBP (5 GBP concessions, from Tuesday to Thursday) are now available from the Civic Theatre Box Office on 01245 606505. Further details can be found at

[UK] Lords and Ladies is being performed by Stephen Briggs' threatre club at Unicorn Theatre, Thames Street, Abingdon from the 7th to 11th February 2006 from 7.30 (plus 2.30 on the Sat). TICKETS SELLING FAST! Box Office - visit

[UK] Behind The Mask - Discworld Convention 2006. A glorious four-day weekend where fans of Terry Pratchett can get together, relax, enjoy each other's company, meet Terry and the other guests, attend some (or many) of the scores of programme events, and generally Have A Good Time...

Location: Hinckley Island Hotel, Hinckley, Leicestershire, UK

Guest of Honour: Terry Pratchett

Other Guests: Stephen Briggs, Bernard Pearson, Trevor Truran, Colin Smythe, Ian Stewart, Jack Cohen, Diane Duane, Peter Morwood, David Langford, Lionel Fanthorpe

Membership: Full attending 50GBP
Concessions: 35GBP
Supporting: 20GBP
Child: Free

Contact: Discworld Convention 2006, P.O. Box 102, Royston, Herts, SG8 7ZJ, UK

Accommodation: Hinckley Island Hotel, Hinckley, Leicestershire, UK



[AU] Nullus Anxietas: The Australian Discworld Convention, Melbourne 2007 - Two months left until membership prices rise! Also, anyone who signs up before the deadline (the end of the year) will go into the running for the first print of our next painting. More details are available on our site -

Small Ads...

Please note, DWM has no way of checking the veracity or validity of any of the items in our small ads section. As always, exercise caution when giving out your details over the Internet. We *strongly* recommend parental supervision for younger readers who
follow up any of these contacts.

Simon Burnell writes: I have the first 12 volumes of the Unseen Library collection and have found myself trying to justify my ownership of them with a new baby on the way and other commitments. They are fantastic to look at, but to be honest that's all I will ever do with them. I have never and will never even open them let alone read them as I have "reading copies" of all the novels. I really would like them to go to a good home and a fan of these beautiful books. They were pricey to buy and I am sure you have all seen the prices they go for on e-bay. I want to sell all 12 as one lot and have an idea of a price in my mind but will be willing to discuss with any serious buyer.

3. Readers' Letters

If you have any letters or comments, please email them to
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 'cos the only way to feel the noise is when it's good and loud.

It is vitally important that you don't pass off other people's work as your own. If you use information from other resources please let us know so we can give proper credit.

The best letter of the month will receive a Kiss the Cook print supplied by Bonsai Trading. Bonsai Trading is the Discworld store that brings you Clarecraft figurines, diaries & calendars, Thud and much more.

* From: "Sachi Schott"
In case creating the Discworld and writing over twenty-nine books wasn't enough, Terry Pratchett has begun predicting the future...

The November 17th issue of the Globe and Mail carried an article with the headline: "Post from the past finally arrives":

"For reasons that are still not fully understood, a mail carrier in Montreal decided that instead of delivering the mail, he would hoard it at home. By the time Canada Post caught on, the carrier had stolen a whopping 75,000 pieces of mail over five years.

On some days, the carrier would deliver the mail to one side of the street, but not the other. Other days, he wouldn't deliver to homes on the second floor. Of the mail he stole, he opened only about 100 envelopes, mostly greeting cards containing cash or cheques.

When police raided the main letter carrier's apartment in Montreal recently, they found it overflowing with mail bags. Then, tipped off by his ex-wife, Canada Post investigators turned to the man's former home near Joliette, Que., where they found a garage stuffed with more bags."

Only now are residents of De L'Epee Avenue getting the wedding invitations, letters from friends and bills that never arrived - now years late."

No doubt the mail carrier didn't deliver the mail because they were pushing, sir, pushing him all the time. I'm sure he meant to deliver them. (I wonder if the letters started talking to him?)

DWM replies: Sachi gets this month's Letter of the Month.

* From: "Liz Love"
When looking in a baby name book recently, I came across the name "Kelda". As a big Terry fan, especially of the Tiffany Aching books, I read on....only to find out that Kelda is an old Norse name meaning "Clear Mountain Spring" or "Source of Life". Funny, seeing as how the Kelda brings forth so much life..........

In addition to this I found that Lilith has Hebrew origins and means Serpent (think Lilith aka Lily Weatherwax in Witches Abroad) and Angua means one of exceptional strength.

I also read an article on the BBC new website about old wives tales, and how various animals were reputed to offer relief from illness. It went on the give examples, including......

"....................frogs could stave off epilepsy - but only after being dried and worn in a silk bag around the neck ................"

Remind you of the Bursar at all?

Thanks for listening to the threads that have been winding themselves in my head for the last couple of weeks!

* From: "Patricia and Rikhye"
Just had a question I was wondering if you could communicate to Mr. Pratchett. I've been reading his work for quite some time (he ought to have been able to put at least one child through school on what I've sunk into his books) and in that time I've been reading quite a bit of the travel writer Bill Bryson's work as well (at least TWO of his children through school, I imagine). One practically has to, doesn't one, if one travels at all? A curiosity has come up in all that reading. Mr. Bryson and Mr. Pratchett write about the same. They even seem to use the same words in a given situation. Otto Chriek, the vampire photographer, has the same German accent, the same word choice, and uses the same expressions as depicted by Mr. Bryson in his travels through Germany. Its the same voice right down to the cadence of speech. It is not just Otto. Sybil Ramkin fits the description Mr. Bryson gives his own mother. Both Sam Vimes and Mr. Bryson's father prefer their food burnt and consisting of grease and gristle. I've compared the two passages. Its nearly word for word the same. Many, many other similarities to each others work can be found. The only hurdles (and large ones, at that) to declaring the two gentlemen one person, is the shear volume of work both have produced, and their book-jacket pictures. No single person could have written so much; not and found time to procreate! I've compared their pictures on the jackets of their books and they do look a bit alike, but not identical. Yet, these two gentlemen appear to be occupying the same trousers, one leg each! Can you ask if they are related? Mr. Pratchett was born in 1948 and Mr. Bryson in 1951 according to my local library database. They could be siblings, I suppose. Both worked for newspapers in London; but appear to have lived in the Yorkshire area; both have the same number of children (I think). My wife is laughing at me as I write this. She thinks I'm mad. Still, it is bugging me, I admit. Would you be kind enough to pass this along to Mr. Pratchett? I'll buy his next book in hard cover, I promise.

DWM replies: We're with your wife on this one. We suspect that both authors, being well read, will have picked up many of the same influences. Everyone knows how vampires speak because they've seen all the old hammer horror films. Many of your similarities are simply coincidences. We're trying to arrange for your doctor to prescribe some dried frog pills for you.

* From: "Jonathan Sutton"
I should like to thank all those ladies - and the gentlemen too! - who were kind enough to take the time to write to me with their recommendations for the best book to introduce a young lady to the Discworld. You may be interested to learn the result: "Equal Rites" got the most "votes", but I gave two points to each title recommended by a young lady and with this weighting "Soul Music" won by a nose (or by a note). I have decided that I will send her both titles in the hope that she will become as addicted as any right-thinking person.

* From: "Erin Vander Leest"
It's not fair!

Okay, I just needed to get that off of my chest. I am a US (Austin) PTerry fan and I'm very envious of you guys across the pond... I know we're much better off than some of the countries that have to wait on their translations, but still! To some degree, I feel as though British soil is holy ground for PTerry fans. Some day I want to make the pilgrimage to one of these fabulous sounding Discworld Conventions. Someday I want to attend a Bursar Vixen Beer Festival and try scumble. Someday I want to see a performance of Witches Abroad or one of the other stage translations of PTerry's works. Did I mention that I am a former theatrical stage manager and that I am currently teaching theatre to elementary (kinder-5th) grade students? (So, I can't even afford the pilgrimage right now!) Someday I want to be in a place where PTerry does book signings for every book released. (I did get to meet him a couple of years ago when he released Monstrous Regiment and we had a lovely, but short, conversation.)

Now some of you are probably rolling your eyes at this letter, muttering to yourselves about "those Americans". (Believe me, I do the same thing almost every day.) But, before I have you completely convinced I am merely whining, I want to say thank you. We lonely US fans are very fortunate in this age of digital technology that we can instantly have news of the goings on of our favorite author and his fabulous universe. I can live my life with some semblance of normalcy knowing that once a month I will get an update on A'Tuin and all of the other players. Thank you for helping to keep me up-to-date and for putting out such a great newsletter. We US fans are very appreciative. Now if you'd just send Eddie Izzard closer than NY or Seattle, I would truly be a happy woman!

* From: "Tom Brosz"
Last month Ozan S Yigit asked about Darwin's Watch not being released in the US.
This may not be all that helpful, but I live in California, and routinely order my Pratchett books from the UK division of [ - Ed]. Not only do I get the books sooner (I think THUD was the only one that came out in the U.S. earlier,) but almost without exception, I get MUCH better cover art from the UK editions. Who cares WHEN they release in the U.S.? Or Canada, or anywhere else that still has postal service?

* From: "Michael May"
Ouch. I sympathise greatly with Matthia, and hope that doesn't happen again. Also, I agree with her statement that there are not only pitiful numbers of TP's books in British Columbia, but also most British authors. In the summer I went to Canada on holiday, and spent the first few nights in Vancouver, one of the largest cities. As I normally do, I decided to buy some books for the days ahead, and went down to one of the biggest bookshops that I'd seen, called Chapters, on Robson St. Spanning three floors, I thought that it must surely have a decent selection of books. What did I find? Three Discworld books. The shop assistant I talked to evidently hadn't heard of Terry Pratchett, although their database returned about 10 books, saying they were all out of stock. As I wasn't hanging around for long in Vancouver, I tried to find out which of my favourite authors they did have in stock. No results returned on Robert Rankin, nor Bernard Cornwell. I was left to console myself by wasting money on a Darwin Awards book (which they had about 20 of). Even the 10 sq. ft. bookshop in Edmonton airport had more Pratchett books (but sadly none that I didn't have). This seems strange, have the inhabitants of BC done something to upset British authors?

4. DiscTrivia

This month Edgewood Smith has come up with some trivia questions about novels six to ten, but not necessarily in that order.

What people used chariots pulled by llamas and carried by two people on either side of the axle? (extra credit: who did they worship?)

What was the name of the female (presumably) dwarf that was, at least indirectly, responsible for Carrot being sent off to Ankh-Morpork?

How many words for vegetation are there in trollish? (extra credit, name one of those words)

How did the ghost of King Verence convince Nanny Ogg to visit the castle?

Who administered Teppic's final assassins' exam?

The results, as always, appear at the end of this issue.

5. Review: Lords and Ladies in XXXX

Review by Simon Slade

Terry Pratchett has sold over 40 million books worldwide, and some of his Discworld series of books have been adapted for the stage. The great effect of this is that it connects an audience of fantasy novel readers with the theatre. Some in the audience therefore know the lines almost word for word, and others do not, making for some strange moments when those familiar with the books howl with laughter at the beginning of a line because they know what is coming!

This adaptation does its best to make the plot and characters reasonably clear, without bogging down in explanations. The plot turns on Magrat's wedding to King Verence II, and her misgivings about it, and includes several elements of "A Midsummer Night's Dream." The wizards from Unseen University make an appearance, along with the Librarian - an orang-utan, played by Nicole Seal.

Some of the cast are Pratchett aficionados, some of the cast are actors, and some of them are both! Theresa Dolman, as Granny Weatherwax, and Fran Edwards, as Nanny Ogg, clearly fall into the last category. They are both hilarious and use their comic timing to great effect. It helps that they have worked together before, too.

Bonnie-Fay Madigan, as Magrat, is a wonderful mixture of bumbling junior witch and warrior princess. Kate Hall, as the head-tossing young Goth witch Diamanda, is very convincing.

Others in smaller roles do well too. Glenn Cupit, as Casanunda, is very funny, as are the antics of Chris Dunn as the coachman, Raechel Carroll as Perdita and Natalie Driver as Amanita.

The general pace of the show needs to pick up a little, and it does run quite long anyway.

Director, AJ Bartley, has done a good job overall, particularly given a cast of more than thirty! Some musicals have less! His attention to detail has paid off, particularly with some of the less experienced cast. It also showed in some of the movement, for example with the elves all moving in a way different from the witches and mortals.

The set is simple, but effective, relying mostly on four periaktoids. The lighting is adequate, but more as a consequence of the limited lighting equipment, rather than a lack of attention to design. Burnside's "Lords and Ladies" appeals mostly to those who are Pratchett fans, but there are still laughs for those who do not know his work.

6. Competitions

* Thud Competition Result *

Last month we offered you a chance to win a Thud board set in conjunction with Bonsai Trading.

We asked you to simply answer the following question: At what time must Commander Vimes return home every day to read "Where's My Cow" to Young Sam?

The answer was of course 6pm and most of the entries were correct.

The randomly selected winner was Barrie T. Pennington of Merseyside.

For more information about Bonsai Trading and their wide range of Discworld products visit

* New Bonsai Trading Competition *

With Christmas drawing ever nearer, it's only right that Discworld Monthly and Bonsai Trading should completely ignore the fact, and do a Competition based around the New Year instead!

This competition is blatantly tied in to the addition of the 2006 Discworld Calendar to the ever growing range of merchandise available on Bonsai Trading - by giving you the chance to win not only a 2006, but a 2005 and a 2004 one too! Track the dates, or just admire the (quick maths...) 36 pieces of art awaiting inside them.

One lucky winner will get one copy of each of the three calendars - and to be that winner, answer the following question:

What is the name of the Artist who currently illustrates the book covers for the UK Hardback Discworld Novels (including Thud and Going Postal)?

Send your answer to this question to by 20th December 2005. The randomly selected winner will be announced next month.

For more information about Bonsai Trading and their wide range of Discworld products visit

7. Review: Maskerade - Live in Newport.

Reviewed by Jemma Powell

I went to see Maskerade: A Play performed by the pupils of St. Julian's School here in Newport, South Wales last night. Going in, I will be honest, I was a bit sceptical that they'd be able to pull it off, but I was pleasantly surprised. The characters of Granny Weatherwax and Nanny Ogg (played by Rebecca Craig and Rebecca Avery) were acted superbly, although I will say it wasn't how I'd pictured Nanny Ogg to look in my mind! The character of Christine was played well (by Tara Price) she annoyed me from the moment she stepped onto the stage. A brilliant portrayal of Dr. Underschaft was played by Daniel Bates; he had me giggling every time he came on stage. Henry Slugg / Senor Enrico Basilica was played brilliantly by Jack Powell (which may be slightly biased as I am his sister!) but he was really suited to the part. My favourite scene had to be where Enrico Basilica, his manager, Lady Esmeralda Weatherwax, Mr Bucket, and Mr Salzella were having lunch, where Basilica proceeded to take the food from everyone, including off their plates, and put it into his jacket pockets. He even tried to fit Nanny Ogg's cake/trifle in there as well, but the bowl wouldn't fit (thank god, otherwise my mum would have killed him!) Jack Baggs made a great Seldom Bucket, and Alex Hiscocks carried off a superb Walter Plinge - very believable, even down to the beret. The best performance by far, though, was Mr. Salzella, played by Luke Meats. He played a thoroughly convincing bad guy and had the funniest death scene I've ever seen. Megan Hughes as Agnes was also good, and full credit deserves to go to the lighting and sound crew as they worked very hard, and played some great pieces of music including the theme from 'Ghostbusters' as the cast took their bows. The cast took their cues well, and all performed brilliantly and deserve a lot of credit for all the hard work they have done. All in all, it was a very good night!

8. Comparison: Rob Anybody and Daft Wullie bronze Nac Mac Feegles.

Review by Jason Anthony.

I am already a very proud owner of a complete set of painted Feegles. So I was very interested (when the bronze Rob Anybody and Daft Wullie arrived in the post) to see how the bronze versions compare.

The bronze Feegles are much, much heavier than their painted brethren. This has a strange effect when you try to pick up a painted Feegle in one hand and a bronze one in the other. Especially in the case of Daft Wullie. It is almost as if the painted Feegles are hollow and the bronze solid.

The bronze Feegles are apparently Foundry cast and acid patinated, which produces that aged green colour you get from bronze.

When the bronze models are compared directly with the painted one there are some obvious differences (other than the finish and weight). Both the bronze Feegles are slightly smaller than the painted ones, and Daft Wullie's egg is somewhat lower as if its weight caused the bronze arms to bow slightly.

The bronze Feegles seem to show more detail than the painted ones. I guess that the side effect of applying the paint is that it tends to fill in some of the fine details.

I really like the painted Feegles as they tend to really show off the characters. However the bronze ones show off the sculptures in more detail and if possible the Feegles look more sinister in the bronze finish. The bronze models also appear to be slightly more stable.

I could imagine setting the bronze Feegles around the garden to take care of the local feline population. I can imagine the look on the face of any cat that tries to take a bite out of Rob Anybody. I probably won't though as I like to keep the Feegles where I can see them.

We have, in conjunction with Aurient Traders, a very small amount of complete sets of same numbered bronze Nac Mac Feegles available via eBay. The complete set costs only 209.65 + 25.35 GBP for courier delivery (due to the incredible weight of the set). This is less than half the normal RRP.

To take advantage of these offers visit and search for Discworld Monthly Offer.

9. The End

* Contact Information *

We prefer information to be sent via email, but can accept information via fax or post at the following addresses:
Post: J Anthony-Rowlands (DWM), 20 Cambrian Place, Pontarddulais, Swansea, SA4 8RG

* Latest Book Information *

Discworld paperback: Going Postal 0552149438/87

Discworld hardback: Thud! 0385608675/87

Discworld hardback Companion: Where's My Cow? 038560937X/87

Discworld Young Adult paperback: A Hat Full of Sky 0552551449/87

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* Disc Trivia Results *

What people used chariots pulled by llamas and carried by two people on either side of the axle? (extra credit: who did they worship?)
The Tezumen (worshipers of Quezovercoatl)

What was the name of the female (presumably) dwarf that was, at least indirectly, responsible for Carrot being sent off to Ankh-Morpork?
Minty Rocksmacker

How many words for vegetation are there in trollish? (extra credit, name one of those words)
They have one word for vegetation. (Oograah)

How did the ghost of King Verence convince Nanny Ogg to visit the castle?
He trapped Greebo in an old lumber room in the castle, so Nanny would come looking for him.

Who administered Teppic's final assassins' exam?

* Obtaining Terry's Books *

If you are looking for Terry books or videos over the net, simply visit our web page at and follow the 'Purchasing' link on the left panel of the page.

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