Better Than

Discworld Monthly - Issue 119: March 2007

Table of Contents:

1. Editorial
2. News
3. Readers' Letters
4. DiscTrivia
5. Review: The Light Fantastic - Facsimile Edition
6. Competitions
7. Review: Nullus Anxietas - The First Australian Discworld Con
8. The End

1. Editorial

Welcome to issue 119. I am happy to announce we have managed to secure an exclusive first look at the cover and pack design for the Special Edition of the Hogfather DVD due for release on 9th April. Please bear in mind that this is still a "work in progress" and is subject to change.

I have to say that I think it looks great and is indicative of the huge attention to detail that has been put into Hogfather project as a whole. I now can't wait for April to get my hands on a copy.

To see the artwork visit:

Next month we hope to be able to let you know about a very special Teatime Hogfather competition. The character, not 4 o'clock in the afternoon.

It sounds like the first Australian Discworld Convention was a huge success. I would like to thank all those that offered to write reviews. You can find Elisabeth Meister's review in section 7. Elisabeth was the first to offer to write a review and we think she's done a smashing job. I would also like to thank Danny for his review of the event as well. It made very interesting reading, but was a bit too long for publication.

It appears that Terry managed to fulfil his role as Guest of Honour at the first ever German Discworld convention "Scheibenwelt-Fest" last weekend (after apparently getting delayed in customs and missing most of the first day). We are hoping to be able to bring you a review of the event next month, providing our reviewer didn't get too drunk and forget to write anything down.

In the meantime a video of one of Terry's speeches from the event has been posted to YouTube.

Last month we asked if you thought a French language version of Discworld Monthly would be a good idea. We received about half a dozen letters from French fans who felt it would be a good idea. Unfortunately from that limited response we didn't feel that it would be worth the time involved in making the translation. We would like to thank Pouhiou for making the offer.

Don't forget, if you visit a play or talk and would like to let the world know about it please feel free to email your review to and we will consider it for publication.

Jason Anthony (Editor)
William Barnett (Deputy Editor)
Richard Massey (Flaming Fool)

2. News

On Friday 9th February 2007 we received the very sad news that Ian Richardson (who voiced Death in the recent Hogfather adaptation)
died suddenly at the age of 72.

Richardson is probably best remembered for his role as Francis
Urquhart in House of Cards and for the phrase "You might well think that; I couldn't possibly comment" which he later paraphrased in the SkyONE adaptation of Hogfather.

Paul Kidby recently got in contact with us to let us know about his new personal website. In March the special feature section of the site will show the processes that went into producing the cover illustration for Making Money - Terry's next novel.

For more information visit:

In a recent blog entry Neil Gaiman mentions that an intriguing new line of fragrances will be available from Black Phoenix Alchemy Labs:

"Terry Pratchett and I have just agreed to allow BPAL to do a set of Good Omens scents, the money to be divided between freedom of speech and orang utans. Terry also thinks the Agnes Nutter scent should have gunpowder in it..."

News from Rob Wilkins (via I spoke with Terry Pratchett this afternoon and he filled me in with his latest news;

Terry Pratchett's Making Money

"The news here is that Making Money has gone off to the publisher; currently the various works in progress are The Folklore of Discworld, which I am working on with Jacqueline Simpson (co-author of the Lore of the Land, among many other books on folklore. Lu-Tse's Yearbook of Enlightenment (the next Discworld diary) and Nation, a young adult book for next year, which is not Discworld, and not what people are usually thinking about when they use the term fantasy. I am about 10,000 words into it already and actually wrote about 5,000 words of it when I was at the Australian convention a few weeks ago. Well, if the jetlag means you are wide awake at three o'clock in the morning, why waste the time!"

Thanks Terry! More Discworld news coming soon...

The Seattle Channel website has a great interview with Terry about Wintersmith. .

There is a transcript and 50 pictures of a talk that Terry made in Brisbane, Australia on February 14th 2007 located at

Adam Williams has recorded a video review of a recent production of Wyrd Sisters by the Southside players in Balham.

To see the review visit

Nullus Anxietas: Notes from the Committee

Well, the convention's come and been, and it was a resounding success - indeed, there's a lot of discussion already for a follow up (tentatively scheduled for sometime towards the end of 2008).

The committee would like to thank a lot of people - families, friends, Terry, our Virtual Guests, volunteers - but particularly the people who came along, who made the event so much fun. You're all fantastic.

For those interested in news about a second convention, make sure you jump on our mailing list at - and if you're interested in seeing some photos from this convention, check out

Martin Walker sent me the synopsis of Making Money. It really makes me want to read it now. Unfortunately we will have to wait until it is released in October.

"It's an offer you can't refuse. Who would not wish to be the man in charge of Ankh-Morpork's Royal Mint and the bank next door? It's a job for life. But, as former con-man Moist von Lipwig is learning, the life is not necessarily for long. The Chief Cashier is almost certainly a vampire. There's something nameless in the cellar (and the cellar itself is pretty nameless), it turns out that the Royal Mint runs at a loss. A 300-year-old wizard is after his girlfriend, he's about to be exposed as a fraud, but the Assassins Guild might get him first. In fact lot of people want him dead. Oh. And every day he has to take the Chairman for walkies. Everywhere he looks he's making enemies. What he should be doing is ... Making Money!"

News from Colin Smythe (

Nielsen Bookscan reports that Wintersmith is no.1 in the Top 20 Teenage Hardback Fiction bestseller list for the 52 weeks to 30 December 2006

I've just heard from Vlastimir Talas of Talpress, Terry's Czech publishers, that "I am very proud to inform you that Maskerade [the adaptation by Stephen Briggs presently being staged in Prague by The Theatre in Dlouha], won the title Comedy of the Year 2006 at the Seventh Grand Festival of Laughter in Pardubice on 18th February 2007. It also won the Critics' Prize, the Spectators' Prize and the Prize for Best Actress - Helena Dvorbkovb (Agnes). For details of The Theatre in Dlouha, see"

Hogfather has been nominated as one of the three Drama Serials short listed in that category for the prestigious Royal Television Society Programme Awards for 2006, which will be presented on 13 March at the Grosvenor House Hotel, Park Lane, London.

The three nominations are:

* Low Winter Sun A Tiger Aspect Production for Channel 4
* Prime Suspect ITV Productions for ITV
* Terry Pratchett's Hogfather The Mob Film Company for Sky One & RHI

The first documented raising of Unseen University is happening at Pandemonium Books & Games [based in Cambridge, Massachusetts - Ed] (Well, at least, the paper model version). It is happening on Saturdays from 2:00p.m. onward, beginning on February 24th. There is a one-time 5 USD charge for supplies which also provides a raffle ticket. When done, the University will be displayed in the store for a bit, and then will be raffled off.

There will be a meeting for the newly-formed Pandemonium Players on March 1st from 7:00p.m. to 9:00p.m. at Pandemonium Books & Games. We are looking for all kinds of theatre folks for a small amateur group focused around fantasy / science-fiction related productions and projects. Our first production (once permission is confirmed) will be Guards! Guards!, to be performed on the weekend of May 4th-6th. Auditions will be announced as soon as permission is
confirmed; anyone interested in joining the production team can email Riz at

More information can be found at Announcements can be found by clicking on the Live Journal link (or scrolling through the calendar).

There is now a thread on the market place of the Discworld Stamps forum for Dave Hodges metal creations (including his excellent Bar-B-Ques) located 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] The OFS Studio will be performing Going Postal from Tuesday 6th - Saturday 10th March at 7:30pm (Saturday matinee at 2:30pm). Tickets cost 8.50 GBP or 6.50 GBP concessions. Box Office 01865 297170

[UK] The South West branch of the Fools Guild will be holding their April Fools Day dinner on 10th March at 7:30pm in the Bear, Wincanton.

You should book direct with Jo on 0196332581.

There will be activities (games) during the day.

More information can be obtained from Sarah Finnerty on 01963 32914 or Divina on 01752 342818.

There are plans to have a joke competition and enter all the jokes in to the British Heritage Joke Foundation. There will also be an auction to raise money for Comic Relief.

[UK, UPDATED] The Broken Drummers is a London Discworld Group that meets once a month on a Monday evening. Membership is free - just come along. New members and visitors to London are both welcome and encouraged. March's meeting is Monday 12th March at the Penderel's Oak, 283-287 High Holborn, WC1V 7HP

Map available at:

For more information go to or e-mail

[UK, NEW] Rickstones School will be staging a production of "Men At Arms" between 13-16th March 2007. The performances will be at the Rickstones School in Witham Essex.

Tickets cost 5 GBP for adults and 3 GBP concessions.

The shows start at 7.30pm.

If you would like a ticket then please contact the school (although tickets have to be paid for in person). According to the producer it's going to be a great show and they have built a 7" troll just for the occasion! [Wow, a seven inch troll, I assume that they mean a seven foot troll - otherwise I will be having visions of Spinal Tap and Stonehenge - Ed]

Telephone (Rickstones School) 01376 515756

[UK, NEW] Guards! Guards! will be performed by Longueville Little Theatre Company from 21st - 24th March 2007.

This production will be performed at their new venue The Chrysalis Theatre at Camp Hill, Milton Keynes

All tickets 6.50 GBP (5.00 GBP concessions)

Book now from the sales page or telephone (01908) 613145

[US] Terry will be guest of honour at the MidSouthCon from March 23rd-25th. The Convention takes place in Memphis, TN.

[UK] Stephen Briggs is taking part in the Essex Book festival this year. He'll be appearing at Harlow Library on March 24th at 7p.m. Tickets are priced at 6 GBP. Visit or telephone 01206 573948 to book tickets.

[UK, NEW] The Manor Theatre group will be performing Wyrd Sisters at Warnham, near Horsham on Friday 20th and Saturday 21st April, and Billingshurst on Saturday 28th April.

Further details at:

[UK] To celebrate their tenth anniversary, the Purple Theatre Company will be returning to the Disc this May with Wyrd Sisters.

Playing at Ickenham's Compass Theatre from the 9th May, tickets go on sale from 19th March, and can be booked through the box office on 01895 673200.

[UK, New] Tabs Productions will be performing Wyrd Sisters at the Pomegranate Theatre, Chesterfield from Saturday 26th May to Saturday 2nd June. Tickets cost 9 GBP or 7 GBP concessions.

Saturday 26th is a preview night with all tickets costing 5 GBP.

Box Office: 01246 345222

The same production will be performed at Octagon Theatre, Yeovil from Tuesday 12th - Thursday 14 June. Tickets cost 10 GBP or 7.50 GBP concessions.

Box Office: 01935 422884 hhtp://

For any other information see

[UK] The Rhoda McGaw Theatre in Woking will be performing Maskerade from 30th May - 2nd June. Details will follow as soon as I get them.

[UK] The Art of Josh Kirby - Walker Art Gallery, Liverpool, 16 June to 30 September 2007

The first retrospective exhibition of science fiction artist Josh Kirby. Born in Liverpool in 1928 and trained at Liverpool School of Art he began his career producing film posters, moving to book and cover art for magazines. Some of his more famous work includes the first cover of Ian Fleming's Moonraker and the poster for Monty Python's Life of Brian and he is best known for his cover illustrations of Terry Pratchett's Discworld series.

[UK, NEW] The Random Salad Company will be performing Carpe Jugulum from Tuesday 10 July to Saturday 14 July at 7.30pm.

Tickets cost 8 GBP (7 GBP concessions) for all areas.

New Theatre Royal, 20-24 Guildhall Walk, Portsmouth, PO1 2DD

Box office: 023 9264 9000

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.

Peter Bennett writes: I have a number of Clarecraft Discworld models for sale. Anyone wanting a list of available pieces can contact me on this address and I will post one to them. Also for sale are some of Bernard's pieces.

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 use them as roll-ups.

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: "Phil Jones"
I was lucky enough to visit Borneo a few weeks ago and go to the Rasa Ria resort where they have a program to rehabilitate orphaned Orangutans into the wild. Absolutely amazing experience to see these magnificent but playful creatures so close up but in their natural habitat.

Anyway, there were a few other passengers there from the cruise ship that I work on and a couple behind me started talking about Unseen University. Needless to say we spent the rest of the day talking Pratchett and carried on for the rest of the cruise. Funniest discussions had to be if the Librarian had children (inspired by seeing the young Orangutans at play) and my personal favourite, whether they could make speakers and flightcases (I'm a sound engineer) out of sapient pearwood as it would save a fortune in trucking costs for a tour. You can just imagine a couple of tour buses headed up the motorway followed by loads of speakers on tiny legs !!! Muriel and Eric said they subscribed to this newsletter so if they read this I would love to hear from them as I didn't get their email address before they left.

* From: "Merril Mcevoy-Halston"
Just got round to checking my email and read the letter re Greebo and Granny. As Granny now wears her new white kitten (given to her by Tiffany) on top of her head and hence under her hat and as she is usually shown wearing numerous lethal looking hat pins to keep said hat on I am concerned and puzzled. How does she get the kitten to stay on her head long enough to get her hat on and then put in said lethal hat pins without securing both the cat with the hat and would this constitute cruelty to animals? Is the answer in "The Unadulterated cat" or its sequel? I know Pterry didn't actually promise a sequel but he did say he was thinking about it. If anyone lives in Toronto Canada and is a slavish reader of Mr. Pratchett's book please contact me, I am new to the city.

DWM replies: Merrill gets this month's Letter Of The Month.

* From: "O Caris"
There has been quite a US following for several years, but no one has ever put together a fan club this side of the Atlantic. I've asked this question before and here goes again. I'm on the East Coast, NJ to be exact, and I want to belong to a Pratchett Club that does a great many of the things similar to the events in the UK. I feel that will be the only way we can get a US showing of Pratchett films (Hogfather) and not just the animated ones which have long been available at some libraries in the US.

A Pratchett convention much like Star Trek conventions would be great with costumes, fairs, and food. Who wouldn't give anything for a "cut me own throat" sausage? If this is already out there, then I've been left out of the loop and would appreciate being informed. If not, is anyone interested in finding out how we can get something like this going?

DWM replies: Most of the UK events were originally started by fans just like you or me. It seems to me that the only reason the first Australian Convention has just happened is because somebody decided that if they didn't do it nobody else would.

* From: "Pam Fowler"
I thought you may like to know, as you were discussing the Australian Convention, that recently, when I was in Melbourne, in the new Southern Cross railway station, a remarkably ugly building, with wavy roofs, appalling noise, and total inefficiency, I overheard a passing traveller say, "Must have been designed by Bloody Stupid Johnson!"

* From: "Clover Jinx"
I've been following the City Watch with something approaching religious devotion for a few years now, and will read pretty much anything with the number "177" on it, on the basis it must have some significant relevance to my life.

I was, as you can imagine, immensely surprised to be stopped by a police officer at the tail end of my summer vacation. He wanted to know if school had started yet. I assured him that I wasn't supposed to be anywhere and was inside the law. It was at that moment that I looked at his badge and let out a scream of delight.

Yes, his number was 177. I would have mugged him and stolen it, but he had a gun and Vimes would not have approved in any case. I asked him about it, and he said he did not know who "Terry Pratchett," was, but he'd won two lotteries with the numbers 177.

* From: "Anne Morrison"
In reply to Martin Barrett [about Discworld names roads etc. - Ed]

There is a street in Seattle, near Pike Place Market, called Terry street.

DWM replies: In Wokingham near where I live there is a short street called Havelock road.

* From: "Fiona Picton "
Well, where do we start with these placenames based on discworld characters?

Clacks Lane, Benson,Wallingford, Oxon Magrats Bungalow in Louth, Lincolnshire Nobbs Lane, Portsmouth a house called Rince Winds in Caldicot, Gwent Mort Street in Bolton Downey Close in Bournemouth

* From: "Jane Foss"
If all DWM readers also read The Times, you'll have been inundated with this one! In this week's The Times Anniversaries column:

Giambattista Bodoni, type designer, born in Saluzzo, Italy, 1740.


All the best, Jane.

4. DiscTrivia

This month I will be asking questions about Small Gods.

What was the first thing that Om said to Brutha?
What form did Om appear in?
Which philosopher asked: Yes, But What's It Really All About Then, When You Get Right Down To It, I Mean Really?
Which generation of Abbot discussed Omnia with Lu-Tze?
a) 392nd
b) 493rd
c) 521st
d) 613th
Who had a luke-warm ice-cold sherbet stand?

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

5. Review: The Light Fantastic - Facsimile Edition

Reviewed by Jason Anthony

Way back in issue 106, I reviewed the facsimile edition of The Colour of Magic. This month I have been sent the second book in the Discworld x12 series The Light Fantastic. The idea of the Discworld x12 series is to make facsimile copies of the first twelve Discworld novels.

The original plan was to release one of the facsimile editions every four months, but that time scale appears to have gone out of the window already as it was just over a year ago I got The Colour of Magic.

The facsimile editions have been painstakingly reproduced using matching paper stock and even the same make and model of printer originally used in 1983 for The Colour of Magic and 1986 for The Light Fantastic. I hadn't previously realised that the first two Discworld Novels were published so far apart. It should be noted that the only apparent way to tell the difference between the facsimile editions and the originals is a small note on the copyright page which proclaims the new editions to be facsimiles made with permission from Colin Smythe.

The cover of The Light Fantastic looks great. It features the first Discworld cover illustrated by Josh Kirby. Josh is credited as the cover illustrator on the rear inside flap of the cover.

Apart from the title and Terry's name on the front, and the same on the spine along with a small Colin Smythe logo, the rest of the cover is left over to Josh's painting. The rear of the cover is completely clear of anything that might detract from the painting.

It was interesting to discover that whilst the original The Colour of Magic was printed in the United States, The Light Fantastic was printed here in the United Kingdom using a very different font on a much brighter paper stock. The font used in Light Fantastic is quite large and far less conventional that that used in The Colour of Magic. I look forward to seeing the facsimile of Equal Rites (whenever that gets released to see if this font was a one off).

Readers might like to know that Sandra Kidby is selling signed copies of The Light Fantastic: Facsimile edition from her web site

6. Competitions

This month PJSM Prints have offered us a signed facsimile edition of The Light Fantastic to give away.

In order to win this excellent book all you need to do is answer the following simple question.

If you don't win The Light Fantastic Facsimile Edition how much in pounds sterling would it cost to purchase a signed copy from PJSM Prints?

Send your anwer to by 20th March 2007. The randomly selected winner will be announced next month.

For more information about PJSM Prints visit

Last month we had two copies of HarperCollins' audio book version of Wintersmith to give away on CD.

All you had to do to enter the competition was answer the following question.

According to HarperCollins website, what three formats is the Wintersmith audio book available in? (see for details)

The answer was CD, Audible and WMA. Unfortunately it appears that some people told me the three versions of the hardback book rather than the audio book.

The randomly selected winners are Matthew Barker of Castleford and Fay Goodson of East Grinstead.

We would like to thank HarperCollins for providing the prizes.

7. Review: Nullus Anxietas - The First Australian Discworld Con

Review by Elisabeth Meister

The first Australian Discworld Convention (also the first ever Discworld Convention outside the UK!) took place in Melbourne from February 9-11. Not only did convention director Pat Allan and his fantastic team manage to have Stephen Briggs, Colin Smythe, Bernard Pearson and Jack Cohen as virtual guests, they also convinced Terry to travel all the way to the other side of the world - and even if Terry likes Australia, has written about 5000 words of a future novel here already and claims that the toughest part of the long flight is choosing the wine, that's no small feat in itself!

Over 300 witches, dragons and wizards as well as other assorted fans enjoyed a fantastic program that was, as one fan put it, "fun with extra bits of fun stitched on to make it as fun as possible". This meant constant agonising over what to see and what to miss - a really tough choice when so much is on offer!

The opening ceremony started with some spontaneous Deformed Rabbit by the master himself, followed by a highly entertaining Rincewind film that ended with a very convincing Rincewind actually racing through the doors. There were lots of other great costumes as well - most notably an Ankh-Morpork postman, a Granny Weatherwax who stayed in character for most of the con, and a superb Death of Rats who ended up taking home the Seamstresses' Award for Best Costume.

Numerous panel discussions included a very interesting "Pratchett vs Rowling" debate (no Rowling-bashing involved!) as well as a discussion about which Discworld character is the sexiest (with Angua and Greebo taking top honours). Theatre events were another highlight, with performances of Wyrd Sisters and Mort, a reading of "Where's My Cow?" complete with lively audience participation, a reading of "Pyramids" and a discussion on Discworld theatre productions.

There were also tons of games (among those of course Thud! as well as Cripple Mr Onion), Sword and Armour Demonstrations, Bellydancing, Cooking with Nanny and one of her daughters-in-law as well as The Great Debate on whether or not we need to know the sex of Great A'Tuin. Martin Pearson's musical version of Lord of the Rings was another highlight in a con full of excitement, fun and serious lack of sleep.

And of course there were lots of Terry events - not only were people buying him drinks (at one point he said he had 64 drinks lined up!), he also read from "Making Money" (out in October; I'm sure I wasn't the only one entertaining serious thoughts of snatching Terry's laptop), answered questions in two Q&A sessions, signed books for hours on end and spontaneously participated in various discussions and panels. Ten lucky winners also enjoyed an hour of coffee and a chat with Terry, covering a broad range of topics from serious to funny. The sumptuous, scrumptious Gala Dinner was sold out well in advance, and Fair Go Dibbler's Charity Auction with many unique and rare Discworld items managed to raise AUD 9000,- for the Orang Utan Foundation.

The next Australian Discworld convention, which I think should be entitled "Adhuc Nullus Anxietas" (meaning "Still No Worries", but I admit it's not exactly catchy), is slated to be held in late 2008. So if you missed out on this one, you'll get another chance!

More information about the Australian Convention can be found at

8. The End

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* Disc Trivia Results *

What was the first thing that Om said to Brutha?
What form did Om appear in?
Which philosopher asked: Yes, But What's It Really All About Then, When You Get Right Down To It, I Mean Really?
Which generation of Abbot discussed Omnia with Lu-Tze?
b) 493rd
Who had a luke-warm ice-cold sherbet stand?
Cut-Me-Own-Hand-Off Dhblah.

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