Better Than

Discworld Monthly - Issue 108: April 2006

Table of Contents:

1. Editorial
2. News
3. Readers' Letters
4. DiscTrivia
5. Discworld x 12 Series
6. Competitions
7. Good Omens - Harper Collins Hardback Edition.
8. Discworld Convention Update: Wanna Join a Guild?
9. The End

1. Editorial

Welcome to issue 108. At the end of April, I will be congregating in Wincanton in Somerset along with a couple of hundred other Discworld fans for another Cunning Artificer event.

These events tend to be fairly relaxed affairs which gives you plenty of opportunity to meet up with new friends and old, and spend lots of money on beer and Discworld goodies.

Even if you have never met another Discworld fan before I am sure you would leave the weekend with a whole host of new lifelong friends.

April's event takes place over the weekend of the 29th. See for more details.

Jason Anthony (Editor)
William Barnett (Deputy Editor)
Richard Massey (Skype Victim)

2. News

I have recently received the following email from Terry about WorldCon.


I'm sorry to say that I will almost certainly not be able to attend Worldcon this year. From mid- August I'm down to do the UK Discworld con, the Worldcon, the German tour, the UK 'Wintersmith' tour and then the US tour -- and those are only the *major* things in the well speckled diary. Oh, and I should be doing some WRITING, too. So I'm shedding what I can, and that means Worldcon has to go. It's a bugger, because I'm fully paid up, but I've learned the hard way the need to bleed some space into the schedule.

If 'Making Money' writes itself fast, I suppose I might make a last minute dash to get there just for the craic, but I wouldn't want anyone to bet on it.

All the best.

Terry Pratchett

News from Colin Smythe:

I've heard from Peter Tabern of Childsplay that the BBC will be broadcasting the combined version of the three episodes of Johnny And The Bomb in the Autumn - exact date not yet announced - to be followed by the release of the DVD before Christmas.

I've just received copies of the BCA Unseen Library's next three quarter leather bound titles - Small Gods, Lords & Ladies, and Men at Arms.

Rights sales:

Ucila in Slovenia are buying The Light Fantastic, Equal Rites, Mort, Sourcery and Wyrd Sisters, taking over from Vale-Novak who published The Colour of Magic.

Varrak in Estonia are buying Jingo

Karisto in Finland are acquiring Maskerade

Conrad in Brazil Reaper Man and Witches Abroad

Noesis in Romania Pyramids

Laguna in Serbia/Montenegro Feet of Clay Science

Fiction World Magazine in mainland China Equal Rites, Mort and Sourcery.

The Stephen Briggs recording of Good Omens will be released by ISIS in July, and will have the Josh Kirby cover illustration that was commissioned by Heyne for their German edition of the book, and hasn't yet been used for any English language edition.

The new American edition of GOOD OMENS, published by Morrow, is being issued in two different covers. See for pictures of both covers. The book contains new material by each of the authors.

Joe Pattison, the sculptor of many of Clarecraft's figurines, has announced a repair service for Clarecraft's products. So if you have an unfortunate accident with your Rincewind or drop your Death - Joe will try to fix it for you.

Joe says that no damage has beaten him yet. If you need to get a Clarecraft piece fixed you can contact Joe via his website or email him at

The Book Magazine is currently running a vote for the greatest living British writer. You can vote once for each email address, so please, show your support of Terry by voting at

I have recently been invited to become an moderator of the Harper Collins' Terry Pratchett bulletin board. I have accepted the role on a part time basis and will soon be wielding my power and making life a living nightmare for all the posters. Actually I will soon be helping out the ever capable Anna MC who has been doing a sterling job on her own.

If you want to chat to other Discworld fans and are looking for a slightly less busy forum than the excellent Discworld Stamps forum pay a visit to

Secure On Line Hotel Booking for the Discworld Convention 2006 is now available at:

You are requested to book early to take advantage of the prices the organisers have negotiated with the Hinckley Island Hotel (rated as 'four stars') and to ensure your booking. Currently there is NO overflow hotel and rooms will be allocated strictly on first come first served basis.

More information about the Convention can be found 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.

[UK, New] Waterside Theatre Company will be performing Guards! Guards! At The Waterside Theatre, Holbury, Nr Southampton from May 18th - 20th 2006.

Tickets 7.00 GBP and 6.00 GBP concessions available on 023 80841533

[UK] The Stockport Garrick Theatre will be performing Lords and Ladies from the 10th-17th June. Tickets cost 7.50 GBP (6 GBP for concessions).

More information can be found at

[AU, New] Unseen Theatre Company will be performing Jingo from June 28 to July 15. More details can be found at

[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


[UK] Wadfest 2006 will take place over the weekend of the 1st-3rd September. This year's event will take place again at Trentfield Farm which proved to be very suitable last year. More details at

[AU, Updated] Nullus Anxietas: The Australian Discworld Convention, Melbourne 2007 - For the latest information on the con, please check out the new version of our website -

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.

Rebekah Wells writes: I'm currently working as a GDB (General Dog's Body) at a school in the West Midlands, and was chatting with the teacher in charge of the theatre department - the students are currently studying MacBeth... being a fan of Discworld, I casually mentioned "Wyrd Sisters" and the fact that it has been performed as a play and the teacher was extremely interested (nearly jumping up and down with excitement is more like it), and wants to get a copy of the script. I've been searching the net frantically, but can't find a copy for sale - would you know where I could find a site listing this for sale, please?

Dot and Stypica writes: Hello friendly Pratchett fans. We are coming out for the Convention in August. Actually, we are flying from Phoenix, AZ to London on August 8 and leaving London on the 24th. We thought we had a friend to stay with during the days before the con but it's looking like she won't be available some of that time. She lives in Brighton but goes to school in London. I'm gonna go out on a limb here and see if any of you nice English folks can spare us some couch space or at least let us know which hostels and hotels we should steer clear of in Brighton or London. Thanks a bunch.

Karen writes: I have a collection of Clarecraft Discworld figures which I unfortunately no longer have room for. I am trying to find some information on how much they are worth as well as the best place to sell them.

I would be grateful for any help you can offer. writes: Is there an a US chapter of the Terry Pratchett Fan Club?

DWM replies: There is a more US - centric newsletter called Wossname. For more details search for Wossname at

Michel Klijmij writes: Last year, I started to run a Discworld Wiki which was eventually incorporated into It might be good to let your readers know it exists, so they can all start reading and contributing.

The URL is

Editing requires no registration to make it easier to contribute. The more people work on it, the better it's going to be.

Gene Bennett writes: As soon as I see this note in DWM I'll be putting a set of Verence and Magrat Wedding Champagne Flutes up on ebay. I'm pre-publishing the auction like this because there were only 50 sets made, so this may be a once in a lifetime opportunity for you and I wanted to make sure that everyone has a chance at them (and it may raise my take a bit...) My ebay handle is mlink, so search by that or by Verence or Magrat.

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 and laugh at your mistakes.

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: "Yoav Lubelsky"
CRIVENS!!! I was horrified to hear that the adaptation of the Wee free men was put in the hand of Sam Raimi. The Nac Mac Feegle are everything that a good Hollywood movie can't show. They drink they smoke and they use foul language (are they going to beep Daft Woolie?) I fear we might end with a politically correct version in which the Feegles buy their cows instead of making them zoom backwards and check your ID before allowing you to touch a drop of special sheep lineament. Oh and one more thing: do you know if Johnny and the Bomb is going to be on a channel that can be seen in Israel (BBC prime for example) any time soon?

* From: "Mark Perry"
Whatever happened to the Cable Street Particulars? I had just finished reading the many adventures of the City (Night) Watch, desperately looking for something else to read (again) when I came across Maskerade and thought Aah!, a highbrow book with a plot!, "Opera"! Settling down to read this book I noticed that a certain policeman, Andre, mentioned that he was working with the Cable Street Particulars, a special section set up by Commander Vimes for "special" crimes. But, hang on! I thought, weren't the Cable Street Particulars Lord Winder's secret police in John Keel's time?

Aaah! But then, this is Opera! That explains it! Doesn't it?

DWM replies: We have gone to great lengths to 'dramatically' reduce the number of exclamation points in this letter.

* From: "Christopher McGrillen"
Hi, I would just like to say thanks for all the helpful suggestions that I got from fellow Discworld Monthly Readers about Nanny Ogg's Cookbook. I got loads of them, including one for a new word in the dictionary. I couldn't reply to them all thanking them so I thought I'd thank them here. Thanks for all your help and now thanks to Peter Yorke selling me a copy I have one. Thanks again all those who responded.

* From: "Sue Moore"
I'd be grateful if readers who've read more Discworld books than I have could suggest suitable names for a pair of kittens which I intend to acquire in the next few months. (Colour/breed not yet known.) Preferably names which will make me appear far more of a Discworld expert than I am at present and save me from calling them Oi You until I've read more books. I'm sure there are some good cat names in there somewhere! Otherwise I'll have to resort to my other interest - aviation - and name them Sopwith and Fokker... which the neighbours may misinterpret when I'm calling in a recalcitrant pet!

The name Binky is already "reserved" for my next rabbit as it is the word for when a rabbit jumps and turns 180 degrees in mid-air whilst running.

Many thanks.

* From: "John M Rogers"
Surely, the wonderful thing about the postwoman who hoarded 111,000 letters is that the junk mail was eventually delivered in bulk. Can you imagine receiving a year's junk mail in one delivery? I'm convinced that satire is too often overtaken by reality.

* From: "Peter McMahon"
I personally, am quite happy with the way that Granny Weatherwax and Nanny Ogg seem to be "cameo'd", in the "Tiffany Aching" books. I must admit here to a bias: I do prefer the "Guards" and Rincewind. I also hope that Terry keeps incorporating characters like William De Worde and Moist Von Lipwig. I was especially pleased that the next regular (for want of a better word) Discworld book may feature Moist Von Lipwig. Can you tell me though, are we going to see more of Rincewind? He is like a family member that has gone missing.

DWM replies: I suspect that Rincewind is off somewhere with his feet up. I wonder if Rincewind still has a place in this age of more serious Discworld novels.

* From: "Reina Kappert" <email address withheld on request>
When I read about the Hogfather adaptation and there being an unnamed, very tall Dutch actor playing the part of DEATH I immediately guessed that this would probably be Carel Struycken (see:

Apart from Rutger Hauer I guess he's the only other Dutch actor who has really made a name for himself outside of Holland, i.e. in Hollywood.

This is partly due to the fact that he is indeed 7 feet tall (2m13!) and has a very distinctive facial bone structure.

He has portrayed Lurch in The Addams Family and maybe you know him as the silent servant of Deanna Troi's demanding mother in Star Trek: the next generation. Any bells ringing yet? :-)

So if it's really him I think he would make an excellent DEATH!

I can't wait for the series since it would mean more exposure for Mr Pratchett (spread the word!) but I also hope that it will appear on DVD soon after, since Sky Television isn't shown on Dutch cable.

* From: "Alec Magee"
I was just wondering if anyone else had noticed the similarities between Adora Belle Dearheart in "Going Postal", and Susan Calvin in Isaac Asimov's "I, Robot". Both characters seem to feel more empathy for the golems (or robots in "I, Robot") than for humans, and are fiercely protective of them.

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

* From: "Allen Miller"
I agree with the sentiments expressed by "hpetken" about the new covers. For me a Discworld novel without a Josh Kirby cover is not quite right (sorry Paul) and the new black covers make them too serious looking (publishers please note if you are reading). To those who ask about Discworld games etc, there always seems to be a selection of books, games and other items on e-bay. Just recently two Discworld stamps went for over 70 GBP each, to say nothing of a TP Toby jug for over 200 GBP. Perhaps Stanley Gibbons should have a section for Discworld stamps in their catalogue.

* From: "David Zerdin"
In March, my wife and I were pleased to see a production of 'Guards! Guards! at our local theatre - The Questors in Ealing, London

It was put on by members of the 500 strong Questors Youth Theatre group; indeed at times it seemed as if most of their members were on the stage

Being adapted by Stephen Briggs, the play was very faithful to the book, with the additional theatrical device of a TV presenter to help 'newcomers' to understand the story

During the interval, food was offered for sale by a certain Mr Dibbler, but he didn't seem to attract many customers

Also during the interval, the TV presenter maintained her role by interviewing members of the audience whilst these interviews were displayed to the rest of the audience on TV screens

When interviewed, I was able to tell her that a nearby shop had just been burnt down and asked her if she knew what the cause was and whether the dragon was responsible

Off she went to investigate...

4. DiscTrivia

This month I have decided to ask questions about The Light Fantastic.

Why was Death upset about being summoned by the Rite of AshkEnte?

Who was hiding in an air-tight box when Death stated: 'DARK IN HERE ISN'T IT?'

How old is Cohen exactly?

a) Eighty-sheven
b) Eighty-two
c) Shevnty-eight
d) Forty-two

How many carats of jewellery does Cohen have in his din-chewers?

What did Twoflower give to Rincewind as a parting gift?

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

5. Discworld x 12 Series

Hill House, publisher - the company responsible for the recent excellent facsimile edition of The Colour of Magic have announced that they plan to release the first 12 Discworld novels in this format, continuing naturally with The Light Fantastic.

Hill House plan to release one book in the series every four months. If you subscribe to the series each book will cost 35 USD including shipping. Subscribers to the series also get a bonus of a two-part history of the Discworld signed by Terry. The first part will be sent out after the release of book 6 and part two will be released after part 12.

Hill House has also announced that they will only accept a maximum of 500 subscribers so you can be sure that what you are getting is a truly limited edition. They are allocating the subscriptions on a strictly first come first served basis.

Non-subscribers can purchase individual volumes of the series for 40 USD each plus shipping.

Subscribers are required to pay for the first six books upfront and will then be charged for the second six books upon the release of book seven.

More information about the series can be located on the Hill House website

Also of possible interest to Discworld fans is their edition of Neil Gaiman's American Gods, Preferred Edition series and a new graphical story called Melinda.

I will be sure to let you know all about and review each book in the series as and when they get released.

6. Competitions

The ever-popular animated versions of the Discworld Novels Soul Music and Wyrd Sisters were given a DVD boost recently when they were released in a limited edition box set with the paperback of Going Postal.

The limited edition set was rapidly snapped up and is now best found in the dark realms of Ebay - but all is not lost!

There is now a new box set available containing just the 2 DVDs, RRP 19.99 GBP. The box design echoes that of the stylishly designed limited edition set, but thinner now that the paperback book is no longer included.

Courtesy of Bonsai Trading (the online Discworld store), we gave you an opportunity to win a copy of this spanking new box set.

All you had to do was answer the following simple question:

What is the name of the company that produced the Discworld animations "Soul Music" and "Wyrd Sisters"?

The correct answer was of course Cosgrove Hall (probably better know for Danger Mouse, Count Duckula and an adaptation of Truckers).

The randomly selected winner of the DVD box set is Julie Whitehead of Slough. Your box set should soon be on its way to you.

For more information or to purchase a copy of the box set visit

* New Competition *

This month we have teamed up with HarperCollins to give you an opportunity to win a set of the new Good Omens hardbacks. See review in next section.

All you have to do to be in with a chance of winning is send the answer to the following simple question to by 19th April 2006.

What is the latest Johnny Maxwell book to be announced on the website?

A randomly selected winner will be announced next month.

For more information about Discworld in the US visit

7. Good Omens - Harper Collins Hardback Edition.

Harper Collins have recently released in the United States two new versions of the classic Pratchett / Gaiman novel Good Omens. It is 16 years since the original was published and Harper Collins have gone to town with this new version.

The first thing you notice about the two versions is how stunning they look. One of the covers is white and the other black thus reflecting the good and evil theme of the novel. One cover has Neil Gaiman listed first and the other has Terry Pratchett listed first.

The white cover, which has Neil Gaiman as the first author, features Crowley reclining with a glass of wine in his hand, the name of the book and a tag line that reads "THE NICE AND ACCURATE PROPH".

The black cover, which has Terry Pratchett as the first author, features Aziraphale reclining reading a book, the same Good Omens logo as the other cover and the tag line "ECIES OF AGNES NUTTER, WITCH".

At this point it becomes obvious that these books are designed to be displayed next to each other so that the tag lines join. Another nice feature means that the authors across the top of the two covers then read "Neil Gaiman & Terry Pratchett" followed "Terry Pratchett & Neil Gaiman" and of course then allow Crowley and Aziraphale to see each other across the pages.

The inside flap of the back covers also follows the favourite author trend with the details of the primary author of each cover listed above the other. It also features the original author photograph that was in my old paperback edition and a much more recent one.

The inside of the books also get some differences. The book with Crowley on the cover gets Aziraphale on the inside front and the other book vice versa.

Other than the differences mentioned the books themselves are identical and still include the classic and very funny novel. The presentation is lovely, each new day in the story is separated by a black page with white writing which adds a touch of class to the novel.

Also new in this version is a new foreword written by both authors, and a slight change to the dedication - I will let you find out what for yourselves.

The price indicated on the inside cover is 29.95 USD. It remains to be seen whether the UK publishers will follow suit.

More details of this release can be found at or if you prefer

Also, don't forget to enter our competition this month to win a pair of the new Good Omens hardbacks.

8. Discworld Convention Update: Wanna Join a Guild?

The runaway hit at the last Discworld Convention was the Guilds. No one thought much about them at first. Members were asked at registration if they'd like to join a guild, and were given a guild sticker to wear on their badges. A little announcement was slipped into the Chairman's opening remarks, saying that people could earn points for their guilds in the form of tokens handed out by the Guests. And then the guild heads (the Guests) introduced themselves and their guilds. Then the convention began, and you might have thought this little fillip would be forgotten in the face of the actual programme for the weekend.

You would have been so very, very wrong.

Never mind that the programme for the weekend was the busiest ever for a Discworld Convention. Never mind that the members had had no guarantee that spaces in their favourite guild would still be available when they registered, and some had to make spontaneous choices from whatever was left. Never mind that it had never been done before.

The guilds took over. Counterfeit tokens were forged. Tokens created an economy. Dunnykin divers charged for use of their products. Fools threatened to tell jokes. Conjurors taught tricks. Seamstresses... handed out lace. Assassins sold insurance. Alchemists performed drug testing before the gala dinner, created a Philosopher's stone, and suffered from explosions. By the end of the convention, even Terry was in awe.

This time, it will be different. People know the guilds are coming. Members can choose their guild in advance, and join an online forum to plot and plan with other guild members. Guilds will even be helping to plan and run some of the events. And there will even be a few new guilds.

Join us in 2006. Join a guild. We can't tell you what to expect, and therein lies the fun!

More information at:

9. The End

* Contact Information *

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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 *

Why was Death upset about being summoned by the Rite of AshkEnte?
He was at a party.

Who was hiding in an air-tight box when Death stated: 'DARK IN HERE ISN'T IT?'
Greyhald Spold (previously the oldest Wizard on the Disc).

How old is Cohen exactly?
a) Eighty-sheven.

How many carats of jewellery does Cohen have in his din-chewers?

What did Twoflower give to Rincewind as a parting gift?
The Luggage.

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