Better Than

Discworld Monthly - Issue 131: March 2008

Table of Contents:

1. Editorial
2. News
3. Readers' Letters
4. DiscTrivia
5. Review: ISIS Audio - Making Money
6. Competitions
7. Review: Terry at the Bath Literature Festival
8. The End

1. Editorial

Welcome to issue 131. Last month I mentioned that no news is good news with regard to The Mob's adaptation of The Colour of Magic / The Light Fantastic and it appears that was the correct advice.

In the last month the UK premiere has been scheduled for Monday 3rd March at the Curzon Mayfair Cinema in London (the same venue as the Hogfather premiere).

Tickets have been made available and snapped up so fast that it was impossible to let anyone know about it in time.

I'll be at the premiere and will let you know all about it next issue.

I've heard (but cannot confirm at the moment) that The Colour of Magic will be shown on SkyOne on Easter Sunday and Easter Monday. Sky have started showing teaser trailers and one can be found at

TV Zone issue 225 included a fun-two page interview with Terry about the adaptation and have a few pictures which look great.

There is reportedly an article in latest Sky magazine but as the magazine is only available to Sky subscribers I cannot confirm this.

Don't forget, if you visit a play or a 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 (Digital Luddite)

2. News

A new 3-part television series called "Worlds of Fantasy" on starts on BBC4 at 9.00pm on Wednesday 27th Feb.

The series starts with The Child Within: Looking at the world of fantasy fiction writing. The first programme explores the role of child heroes and heroines, from Peter Pan to Harry Potter.

I understand that part of the series involves Terry's works and may involve some of the Thud players from

A range of Discworld Collectable Pins has just been made Available from PJSMPrints. information as below:

The Assassin's Guild Crest

Introducing the first two Discworld collectable pins; the City Watch Badge and the Assassin's Guild crest. Each pin measures 1" and crafted to an incredibly high standard.

The City Watch badge is based on the eight-pointed copper star, with the Ankh-Morpork coat-of-arms in the centre. Around the arms is written Fabricati Diem, Pvnc, a truncated version of Veltrick's motto as described in Men at Arms.

The Assassin's Guild crest features the classic skull and crossbones design encased within a cloak and dagger and 'Nil Mortifi Sine Lvcre' motto. The pin is studded with faux rubies and is further embellished with stunning purple enamel.

Each of these 1" pins comes from a limited edition of only 100 whose unique number is individually engraved on the back.

We will be keeping a database of buyers and so you can ensure that as the collection grows you will be able to keep the same number throughout.

"Truly for the discerning Discworld collector." - Terry Pratchett

Profits from the sale of these pins will be divided between the Royal British Legion (Jersey) Poppy Appeal and the Alzheimer's Research Trust.

An adaptation of Night Watch will be broadcast on BBC Radio 4!

The adaptation starts on Wednesday 27th February at 11.00pm on BBC Radio 4 and continues for five parts on 5th, 12th, 19th and 26th March.

See for more details.

News from Colin Smythe (Terry's Agent):

I'm told by MOB Films that the Borders exclusive sale period for the Hogfather DVD in the USA is coming to an end and it will be on general release there on 4 March.

Talpress in the Czech Republic will be issuing a 2-in-1 omnibus of The Colour of Magic and The Light Fantastic to mark the 25th anniversary of the start of the Discworld. They're also issuing a collection of the contents of the Discworld Diaries 1998-2007 in a single volume.

Rao in Romania are taking licenses for Pyramids, Moving Pictures, and an unillustrated edition of Eric

Laguna (Serbia and Montenegro) have acquired licenses for Hogfather and Jingo

Proszynski (Poland) have just signed a licence for Monstrous Regiment

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] The premiere of The Colour of Magic will take place on Monday 3rd March at the Curzon Theatre London. Tickets were very limited and were allocated very quickly. Hopefully your esteemed editor will have a review of the premiere in next month's issue.

[UK, New] Mort will be performed at the OFS Studio, George Street, Oxford, Tuesday 4 March - Saturday 8 March. Phone box office: 01865 297170

[AU] "Pratchett Pieces Two - The Radio Play" is an outrageous collection of short stories by Terry Pratchett, performed in the crazy style of an old time radio show. And will be performed as part of the Adelaide Fringe Festival 2008 adapted by Pamela Munt and Rod Lewis.

The shows will be performed at the Bakehouse Theatre, 255 Angas St Adelaide from March 5 - 8 and 11 - 15 at 5.30pm

Tickets cost: 15 AUD Adults, 10 AUD Concessions with other ticket options available.

For bookings: Fringetix 1300374643, visit, call the Bakehouse Theatre on 82270505 or email

[AU, New] Rosebud Astral Theatre Society (Mornington Peninsula, south of Melbourne) are putting on a performance of Mort. The show runs from the 6th of March until the 16th - 8 shows over two weeks from Thursday to Sunday.


The website contains Desktop Wallpapers and rehearsal shots, booking photos and posters.

It is hoped that If this production is a success the director can wrangle another one out of them!

[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 will be on Monday 10th March with a venue still to be announced so keep an eye on or e-mail

[UK] The Henley players will be performing Wyrd Sisters at The Kenton Theatre (Henley-on-Thames, Oxfordshire) from Tuesday 25 to Saturday 29 March at 7.45pm, with a 3pm Saturday matinee.

A flyer can be downloaded from:

More information can be found from the Kenton Theatre website.

[UK] The Wincanton Spring Bash will be held on the 24 and 25 May. Visit for more details.

[UK] The Discworld Convention 2008 will take place at the Hilton Metropole Hotel, Birmingham from 22nd to 25th August 2008.

For more information visit:

[UK] Wadfest 2008 will take place on the 29th - 31st August 2008. Tickets cost 15 GBP for adults with children under 16 free when accompanied by a paying adult.

For more information visit:

[UK] The Wincanton Hogswatch Event will be celebrated on the 29th and 30th November. Visit for more details once they have been confirmed.

[US] The First North American Discworld Convention will take place from September 4-7, 2009 in Phoenix, Arizona.

For more information visit"

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.

Wesley Townsend writes: Unwanted present Signed Slipcase edition of Making Money, still sealed in plastic covering, not needed because I'm not a collector and would never read the books in this condition.

Anna Murphy writes: I am writing on behalf of our cats and my fiance. Currently I am arbitrating between the two, as one of our three moggies managed to smash his resin Clarecraft "Errol DW 36". As he does not know which one of them is responsible he is being equally grumpy with all of them; they in turn will not leave me alone; looking for the attention they would normally also get from him. I know it is a VERY long shot, and have already spent a long time on the internet looking, but do any of you kind people out there know where I can get a replacement, or, alternatively, of anyone willing to sell one to me? My sanity is quite possibly in your hands.

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 attend film premieres in London :)

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 as by Bonsai Trading. Sadly Bonsai Trading is no longer trading but John Pagan has kindly supplied me with a reasonable supply of prints to give away.

* From: "Michael Bailes"
So what is Terry's favourite Alzheimer's Research Charity we could all send some money to? In small repayment of all the joy he has given us?

* From: Contact Details witheld by request
The Times recently produced a poll of its top 50 greatest British writers since 1945. The list included the likes of J.R.R Tolkien, C S Lewis and a certain J K Rowling but unfortunately no sign of Terry Pratchett, Douglas Adams, Isaac Asimov or Philip K Dick. Also none of these names appear in their long list which they chose the top 50 from.

Now I don't know what their criteria was in selecting the names but it seems mad to me that they didn't get any mention. There is a comments section on the Times OnLine site and some fans have been standing up for Terry.

* From: "John Blackburn"

The other day I was reading, in the Littlejohn page in the Daily Mail, a reference to a Daily Express column "By the Way" written by Beachcomber. Littlejohn was using a character from this column, named Mr Justice Cocklecarrot, to illustrate a point and mentioned the case of the Twelve Red-Bearded Dwarfs. These dwarfs all had ridiculous names and one of them was CHURM RINCEWIND! If you google "Twelve Red-Bearded Dwarfs" you will find a copy of the original story.

* From: "Merril McEvoy-Halston"
Re a couple of recent letters: I recently visited Egypt and looked, in vain, alas, for a camel which showed signs of having mathematical problems on his mind. Unfortunately my search was in vain. I concluded that either Pterry's camel had passed on without issue (unlikely) or that none of his issue had inherited his abilities or that camels being camels with typical camel expressions that I could not tell the difference between a camel contemplating complex mathematical problems and one who was contemplating what he would like to do, if allowed, to the next tourist who tried to get on his back. They also did not seem inclined to discuss the matter of their sexual preferences and as I considered the matter their affair and non of my business I did not ask. I do so hope that this reference to creatures who may or may not have "different" sexual inclinations does not offend those readers who may have a delicate attitude to such matters. As a "straight" 70yr old grandmother I find such matters as sexual preference the least of the problems currently facing the World and I wish people would get more bent and twisted about "man's inhumanity to man" than about who fancies whom.

* From: "Tim Hicks"
I looked into the process for supporting the movement to get Terry a gong from HRH. It seems to be limited to British citizens only.

Tsk. Elizabeth IS Queen of Canada too. She's on our money.

Does anyone have any idea how we can mobilize Canadian fans too?

There are plenty of us, as I learned when Terry came to Victoria a few years back and spoke to a packed auditorium.

DWM replies: Tim gets this month's Lettor of The Month.

* From: "Steve Ryder"
As an ageing, beardy sysop I don't get out very much and it's always refreshing to have ones' personal pleasures mentioned by others, well - at least some of them and NEVER by the police. I noticed in 'Making Money' that the Discworld incarnation of Tracklements have branched out into creating dog biscuits. I can only applaud the shade of Wuffles as an enthusiastic consumer of such comestibles (although not the yellow ones as I recall). The roundworld version of the firm ( has long held a place in my heart with their Onion Marmalade which makes a roast beef sandwich truly sublime and, I am sure, would even make a CMOT Dibbler sossij-in-a-bun palatable although I fear only by using several jars and a litre of vodka.

* From: "Helen Nicholls"
Catching up on the last few editions of DWM, I was surprised by the letter from Brigitte Lee objecting to Jamie White's call for more gay characters in Discworld books. The gay issue was covered in the following edition so I've nothing to add to that. However, another thing about the letter surprised me: the suggestion that nothing political should be allowed to infiltrate this newsletter as it is concerned with a fantasy world.

Now, if Jason started printed multiple letters endorsing his political party of choice, I might think that was a bit much. However, I don't see any reason why things that are political should be considered taboo if there is a Discworld connection. After all the Discworld is a "mirror of worlds" dealing with anything and everything in the real world rather than a self-contained bubble.

A lot of the Discworld books are extremely political in their content. Nightwatch is all about the polictics of revolution, in Small Gods, the totalitarian theocracy in Omnia is contrasted with the Ephebian democracy. Ankh-Morpork went from a monarchy to a dictatorship backed by the aristocracy to the present dictatorship backed up by Guilds, with the power of the nobility waning. We even have the ultimate politician in the character of Vetinari.

What if, as George Orwell suggested, "everything is political"? Perhaps DWM should not print anything at all (least of all this letter which is giving an opinion on DWM's policy on what to print) or stick to uncontroversial factual statements like the Venturis and the Selachiis in Nightwatch. That would avoid giving offence, except to those who value freedom of expression. Which brings us straight back to politics.

When someone disagrees with a comment made in a letter why not just disagree on the issue itself rather than attack the author for saying something political. It makes things much more interesting.

* From: "Tim Carney"
There is a Brewers Fayre Pub/Restaurant called Treacle Mine just outside Eastbourne on the A22 towards East Grinstead

I wonder if TP is aware?

WB replies: Lewis Carroll beat Terry to the punch in using treacle mining in literature although his was a treacle well.

* From: "Mary-Ellen Murphy"
Last month my seven year old niece stayed at my house over night and on going to bed she asked for a bed time story. Having already given her all my old bed time books the house seemed empty of all children's stories. I stupidly over looked my Tiffany Aching books at first but eventually decided they were worth a go. I read four pages before she had fallen asleep.

In the morning my work alarm woke me (06:00), and her, and I headed off to work. By the time I came back (12:00) she had the first chapter down and was moving onto the second. I hadn't realized she would be interested in a book that didn't have pictures on one out of every two pages. She has since taken the book to school and been told not to do so again as her teacher thinks the words in it are too big for her. But now every time I see my niece she shows me all the new words she has underlined (in pencil thankfully).

So there it is proof that Terry encourages literacy!

* From: "J-P Jones"
My grumble regards the casting of David Jason as Rincewind. Yes I know it's a little late in the day for this but... If Sky go on to make further films of PTerry's books then what happens when it comes to Mort? Don't forget that Albert and Rincewind meet each other in Mort... Also I was under the impression that in Colour of Magic Rincewind was supposedly in his mid to late 30's early 40's at the oldest. I think that David Jason portrayed a fantastic Albert but I would like to have seen someone like Kris Marshall, who played Nick Harper, the (erratic and mis-understood) eldest son in the BBC series My Family. I think he would have made a great Rincewind opposite Sean Astin's Twoflower.

JA replies: We know that Rincewind went to UU with Trymon which makes them roughly the same age. Now Trymon is old enough to be a senior wizard. As we know Senior wizards are not young men. So there we can surmise that Rincewind is not a young man either.

Terry has never actually given Rincewind an age and I expect that our opinion is based on Paul Kidby's drawing of Rincewind that shows him as mid 30's if you look back to Josh Kirby's pictures Rincewind is depicted as much older with a long grey beard.

4. DiscTrivia

This month I'm asking questions about The Thief of Time.

Whose shoes does Susan have to regularly get the wee out of?
Who left the horsemen before they became famous?
What is Jeremy's surname?
a) Clockman
b) Clockson
c) Timesman
d) Smith
What name did Susan give to Lady Myria LeJean?
What flavour was the chocolate that Susan sneaked during class?

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

5. Review: Making Money - ISIS Audio book

Reviewed by Jason Anthony.

While Making Money has been available in unabridged audio book format in the US for several months, published by HarperCollins, it has only recently been released in the UK by ISIS publishing.

Although both versions have been read by Stephen Briggs they are apparently not the same recording! It seems mad to me that the two companies couldn't get together and share Stephen's time. [Although Stephen probably enjoyed getting paid twice - WB]

I have to admit I had trouble playing the discs. My car CD player would only play the first six discs (which was annoying as I had them with me to make a six-hour drive more bearable) and my home PC refused to see them as anything other than blank discs (a quick check of previous ISIS audio recordings showed that they are recognised and play back without problems). Looking at the back of the discs it is apparent that these are indeed recordable discs. CDs should be universally readable and this mixed playback ability worries me. Thankfully my work PC could read discs seven onwards and I was able to finish listening to the story - and on work time, too!

I did feel that at times the recording sounded as though Stephen was in a metal box - the recording lacked the fullness I expect from ISIS recordings. It wasn't on all the discs and it wasn't all the way through.

Stephen's performance was, however, great as usual. Although I must listen to Going Postal again as I think he has changed the voice he used for Harry King - normally I can recognise which character is talking based on Stephen's voices. In Going Postal I seem to remember Harry King having a deep resonant voice but in Making Money the voice was a lot smaller.

Generally though the performance is the general high standard you would expect.

Apart from my concerns about the quality of the discs I found the recording very enjoyable. Making Money is available direct from ISIS publishing. The 10 audio cassette version costs 19.99 GBP and the 12 disc CD version costs 28.99 GBP. See for more details.

6. Competitions

Last month Barrie "The Special Discworld Jeweller" Wakeford generously offered one of his beautiful Discworld pendants as a prize.

The prize is one of only 88 ever made. More details can be found at the Crystal Connection website:

In order to win this wonderful prize all you needed to do was answer the following simple question:

Only 88 Discworld pendants will be made but how many have been made available at the moment?

The answer I was looking for (which was on Barrie's website) was that 86 had been made available as numbers 1 and 88 had been reserved for other uses.

I think that this is the competition I have had the most wrong answers too, although the vast majority did get it right.

The randomly selected winner of the Discworld pendant is Alex Prichard of Leeds.

7. Review: Terry at the Bath Literature Festival

Reviewed by Lady Lidia.

On February 23 I attended the talk Terry gave at the Bath Literature Festival to mark 25 years of Discworld.

I came over from Germany for the weekend and met some fellow members of a Discworld Forum for the first time personally.

Terry talked a lot, sometimes digressing, so please have mercy with a foreigner, hope I didn't get things completely wrong.

They started with an interview mentioning the celebration of 25 years of Discworld and Terry's 60th birthday. First topic was the next book which will be published in September: NATION, where the plot is situated in a gloomy mid-Victorian world. Terry explained he is still working on it, making some slight amendments for the American editors, as the English and Americans always differ a bit in their expectations. He didn't really complain but finds it slightly stressful. The book references a tsunami and Krakatao and is set in a more marine world, which all had to be thoroughly researched by him. There may not be the Easter Islands, but there is a Mothering Sunday Island and a ship navigated by calendar. Unfortunately I didn't quite get all the inside jokes.

Then Terry read a chapter mentioning a Captain Roberts who was bound to the mast shortly before the big wave was supposed to come - he sang a song which Terry sang himself and very well too, a sort of hymn with a familiar tune but I can't recall the text, sorry.

Terry was asked about his illness and replied very calmly yet humorously that he is on medication now and isn't allowed alcohol anymore. I understood the worst of this illness to him is the fear he won't be able to write anymore.

There were questions from the audience some of which we have heard before about how he came up with the Luggage, who plays the patrician in TCoM movie (wasn't revealed of course) and why he started to write at all.

At the end of the talk he started an impromptu auction of the pages from NATION he had read from for the benefit of Alzheimer Research. The final bid was 425 GBP made by an unknown middle-aged lady (not me I'm afraid)

Afterwards Terry agreed to sign for his fans with the restriction that he can no longer do any dedications because of his illness.

The signing lasted more than one and a half hours as many people had five or more books to sign. Anyway he was unfailingly friendly and took his time to converse with many of them.

It was a great event and I'm glad I didn't miss it.

8. The End

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* Disc Trivia Results *

Whose shoes does Susan have to regularly get the wee out of?
Who left the horsemen before they became famous?
What is Jeremy's surname?
b) Clockson
What name did Susan give to Lady Myria LeJean?
What flavour was the chocolate that Susan sneaked during class?

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