Better Than

Discworld Monthly Issue 242 June 2017

Table of Contents:

1. Editorial
2. News
3. Upcoming Book Releases
4. May and June Events
5. Future Events
6. Recurring Monthly Fan Meetings
7. Readers' Letters
8. DiscTrivia
9. The Fifth Elephant Audio books - a comparison
10. Review: Official Opening of the Terry Pratchett Owl Parliament at Birdworld : 28th April 2017
11. Review: Worlds of Imagination
12. Review: Maskerade, Newbury, Berkshire
13. Terry's Birthday Competition Result
14. Ankh Morpork Times Competition
15. The End

1. Editorial

Welcome to issue 242. So now that the cake has been eaten and the hangovers tamed we would like to thank everyone that helped us celebrate 20 years of Discworld Monthly at the end of April. We hope to do it bigger and better next year for our coming of age birthday.

Talking of celebrating, by the time the next issue of Discworld Monthly is published, a major event in the lives of the editors would have happened.

Jason Anthony and myself [Rachel Rowlands] will be getting married in mid June! Hopefully we'll have amazing day celebrating with friends in the sunshine. Keep your fingers crossed for us with regards to the weather!

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On Saturday 27th May we visited the Oxford Story Museum for their third Discworld Day. We had a huge amount of fun and even entered the Discworld quiz with questions set by Stephen Briggs. (It was later revealed that these were some of the questions he set for Mastermind a few years ago.) It was an individual quiz rather than a team effort and I was quite happy to come joint 4th but I am every prouder of Rachel who came joint first! See we do know a thing or two about Discworld! We'll include more about the Story Museum next month.

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Don't forget if you want to purchase our time limited 20 Years of Discworld Monthly products you only have until the end of June to place your orders. After that they will no longer be available to purchase. Don't miss out on your chance to obtain these exclusive items and help show your support of your favourite 20-Year-Old Discworld newsletter! Discworld Monthly Shop

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Discworld Monthly is a fan-run volunteer organisation that is partially funded by online sales of our fully licensed and authorised products. Please take a look at our range of pin badges, keyrings, fridge magnets, car "cling" stickers, mugs and mouse mats at: Discworld Monthly Shop

All profits are used to pay for prizes, postage, travel expenses, web site fees, domain renewals and various sundry costs that we have to cover to keep everything going. Without your ongoing support and sales of Discworld Monthly items we would not be able to continue to produce the newsletter.

You can also if you so wish donate directly to the Discworld Monthly paypal account

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Want to ensure you get all the latest news direct from Discworld Monthly between issues? Then visit the Discworld Monthly Facebook page and hit the "Like" button. The page is an announcement-only page and is always the first place we post new information.

Discworld Monthly Facebook Page

We include all our back issues on our website at where you can also find Terry Pratchett quotes, a full bibliography and links to articles we have written over the years.

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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.

Also if you have written an article that you think we might want to include in the newsletter please feel free to email us at the address below. We will of course give credit for anything we use.

Please let us have any submissions for issue 243 of Discworld Monthly BEFORE Friday 23rd June 2017.

Jason Anthony (Editor and Wizzard)
Rachel Rowlands (Sub Editor and workaholic)
William Barnett (Proofreader)
Richard Massey (It's even smaller on my phone!)

2. News

Folklore Journal has recently published an in depth article about The Discworld Fandom written by Jakob Lofgren.

Some of you will remember that Jakob was the student who was doing his thesis project for the Department of Nordic Folkloristics at Abo Akademi University in Finland. He was supported by the Society of Swedish Literature in Finland (SLS) and the Donner Institute. The aim of the project is to examine the notion of fandom using folkloristic

methodology and theories.

To read his article visit:

It’s a Good Job Nobody Mentioned Hedgehogs

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Paul Kidby's Tower of Art and his Lancre castle are just some of the artwork on display at Southampton City Art Gallery as part of the Capture the Castle exhibition.

The exhibition is running from the 26th May until the 2nd September 2017

Location: Southampton City Art Gallery, Commercial Road, Southampton SO14 7LP

Opening Times: Mon to Fri: 10am-3pm, Sat: 10am - 5pm, Sun: Closed, Bank Holiday Mon: 10am-3pm

Free Admission

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The International Discworld Convention 2018 has now got a website and a Facebook group Discworld Convention 2018

As more information becomes available, we will update the newsletter. - [Watch this space, we have a feeling things may be announced very very soon - RR]

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Psst .. Wanna be in a play ?? T.A.O.D.S. are looking for cast members to be in their live radio play of Wyrd Sisters. Auditions will be in June.

To register your interest go to : [On day of publication, T.A.O.D.S. website was having issues. If you are struggling to connect to this link try this one instead. ]

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Penguin Books have an article entitled: A beginner's guide to Terry Pratchett written by Dave Rudden, author of Knights of the Borrowed Dark (and Terry Pratchett super-fan). Dave chats about doodling, dragons, breaking the rules and his five favourite Terry Pratchett novels.

Penguin: A Beginner's Guide To Terry Pratchett

3. Upcoming Book Releases

The Witch's Vacuum Cleaner will be released in paperback format on 15 June 2017 ISBN: 055257449X

4. May and June Events

While we would love to attend each and every Pratchett production it simply isn't possible so if you manage to get to one, please consider writing us a review. It doesn't matter if you've never written a review before. Just see if you can write 200-500 words about your experience. All submissions should be emailed to

Don't forget to visit Pratchett Stage Productions for our most up-to-date list of stage productions.

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[NEW:UK] Capture the Castle Exhibition

Paul Kidby's Tower of Art and his Lancre Castle artwork are currently on display at Southampton City Art Gallery as part of the Capture the Castle exhibition.

Location: Southampton City Art Gallery, Commercial Road, Southampton SO14 7LP

Dates: 26th May 2017 until the 2nd September 2017

Opening Times: Mon to Fri: 10am-3pm, Sat: 10am - 5pm, Sun: Closed, Bank Holiday Mon: 10am-3pm

Tickets: Free Admission

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[UK] Clarbeston Road Players present Maskerade as adapted by Stephen Briggs.

Location: Memorial Hall, Clarbeston Road, Clarbeston, Haverfordwest, Wales SA63 4AA

Dates: Wednesday 7th, Friday 9th and Saturday 10th June 2017 (No performance on Thursday due to General Election).

Times : Doors open at 7pm

Tickets: 7 GBP

Facebook Page: Clarbeston Road Players Facebook Page

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[Australia, NSW] Milton Follies present Wyrd Sisters as adapted by Stephen Briggs.

Location: Milton Theatre, 69 Princes Highway, Milton, NSW 2538

Dates: Friday 9th - Sunday 11th June and Friday 16th - Sunday 18th June 2017

Times: Fridays 8pm, Saturdays 4pm, Sundays 2pm

Tickets: 25AUD Adult, 20 AUD Child / Concessions / Group


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[UK] We Are Theatre present Wyrd Sisters as adapted by Stephen Briggs.

Location: Joseph Rowntree Theatre, Haxby Road, York YO31 8TA

Dates: Tues 20th June - Wednesday 21st June 2017

Time: 7.30 pm

Tickets: 12GBP 10 GBP - Groups of 10+ 8GBP

Box Office: 01904 50 1935


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[NEW: UK] The Rondo Theatre Company presents Wyrd Sisters as adapted by Stephen Briggs.

Location: Rondo Theatre, St Saviours Road, Bath Somerset BA1 6RT

Dates: Weds 21st June - Sat 24th June 2017

Times: Doors open at 7pm

Tickets: 12GBP (Concession 10GBP) plus 1GBP Theatre restoration levy


Box Office: 03336663366

Box Office:

5. Future Events

[Netherlands] Cabbagecon 4 (July 2017)

Cabbagecon 4 will be held at the Hotel Carlton President in Utrecht on 1-2 July 2017.

Some things are unstoppable. Time keeps ticking, spring is upon us and Cabbagecon 4 is approaching ever faster. Our friends at the Ankh-Morpork Tourist Office have assembled a beautifully varied programme that will help us experience a range of aspects of their wondrous city. From the inhabitants and their habits to the culinary treats and the typical city fauna - it

will all have a place in this exploration of the city. Not registered yet? Do so today and join us on 1 and 2 July. You will be surprised at everything the greatest city on the Disc has to offer.


The programme is starting to fill up nicely. Here's a selection of what you may expect:

- An introduction to the Ankh-Morpork city ecology

- Integration exam (how well do you know the city?)

- An introduction to the city's sociological structure

- Be creative: forge your own stamp

- Crash course: how to survive an authentic Ankh-Morpork bar brawl

- And of course a special treat for the Saturday night

In between activities there will be plenty of time to play (Discworld themed) games, browse around the Wandering Shop and of course chat with other con members.


Membership will cost 60 euros per person for the whole weekend or 35 euros for a day ticket.

Please note: membership fees will go up on 1 May 2017. From this date a weekend ticket will cost 70 euros and a day ticket will cost 35 euros. So go to today and sign up before the rates go up!


The convention will be held at Hotel Carlton President in Utrecht, the Netherlands. Especially for Cabbagecon they offer a reduced room rate for our members. The rate for a single room is 80 euros per night. For a double room it's 95 euros per room per night. Breakfast is included in these rates, but tourist taxes are not.

You can book your room by sending an e-mail directly to the hotel at Make sure you mention Cabbagecon 4 and Dutchdwcon in your correspondence with the hotel. The reduced rates are also valid for the nights before and after the convention, so you can stay and enjoy the local hospitality for a few days longer if you like.

For those who prefer not to stay at the convention hotel, there are plenty of (cheaper) alternatives in and around Utrecht. The convention hotel is easily reached by public transport from Utrecht city centre. For a list of hostels in Utrecht, check out the list on the convention website.

Check out our new website at:

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[Leeds UK] Waterstones Leeds are holding a Discworld Quiz evening in the style of a pub quiz with questions and picture rounds.

Location: Waterstones Leeds, 93-97 Albion Street, Leeds, LS1 5JS

Date: Sat 8th July 2017

Time: starts at 6pm

Entry is by pre-booked ticket only. Teams must contain 1 to 4 members only.

To book tickets call into the store or phone 01132 444588

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[Australia] Nullus Anxietas VI - The Australian Discworld Convention - THE DISCWORLD GRAND TOUR - 4th-6th August 2017 at Lakes Resort Hotel, West Lakes, South Australia

Tickets for The Discworld Grand Tour in August are now SOLD OUT! Eeek!

If you're still wanting to attend this fabulous convention then we suggest you do three things.

1. Get on the waiting list right now! Don't wait even a second here's the link Australian Discworld Convention Waiting List

2. Follow Dymocks Adelaide, We've heard they have some tickets

3. Pray to all the Gods

The Special Guests have also just been announced. They are: Stephen Briggs, Daniel Knight, Professor David Lloyd and Martin Pearson. Appearing virtually will be: Professor Ian Stewart, Ray Friesen and The Discworld Emporium.

If you purchased a Supporting Membership prior to February 4th 2017, you can upgrade at a later date to the early-bird price: Membership Shop

No tourist is complete without a cheesy hat or t-shirt, and we've got plenty available! Check out our full range of souvenirs at Souvenir Shop

And of course, for all the information about the Discworld Grand Tour, including activities, venue, and more, visit our website at

The Australian Discworld Convention and the City of Small Gods Terry Pratchett Fan Club will be at OzComicCon Adelaide on April 1st and 2nd. You can find them in Fan Club Central at stand C1! Go along and grab a postcard, and have a chat with them. They can even play a game of Thud or Clacks if there's time.

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[UPDATED, UK] Monstrous Productions presents Guards! Guards! as adapted by Stephen Briggs

Location: The Gate Arts Theatre, Keppoch St, Cardiff CF24 3JW

Dates: Wed 16th - Sat 19th August 2017

Times: Doors open at 7pm, Sat Matinee at 2.30pm

Tickets: 8GBP full price, or 6GBP for concessions

Box Office Website :

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[NEW, UK] Duck in a Hat theatre company presents Wyrd Sisters as adapted by Stephen Briggs at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival.

Location: Paradise in Augustines, (Venue 152) 41 George IV Bridge, EH1 1EL

Dates : 14th - 19th August and 21st - 27th August

Time : 16.25

Tickets: Adult, 9.50GBP Concession 8.50GBP

Box Office Website:

Box Office : 0131 510 0022

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[UK] Monifieth Amateur Dramatics presents Wyrd Sisters as adapted by Stephen Briggs

Location: Monifieth Theatre, 72 High Street, Monifieth, Angus, Scotland, DD5 4AG

Dates: Thurs 24th August - Sat 26th August, Thurs 31st August - Sat 2nd September 2017

Time: Performance starts at 7.30pm

Tickets: Full 9 GBP, Concessions 7GBP


Box Office: 01382 480043

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[USA] The Fourth North American Discworld Convention - THE GENUAN ™ EXPERIENCE - 1st-4th September 2017 at The Sheraton New Orleans.

Join us in Genua for a banananana dacquiri* because our theme is all about the witches of Discworld and the many things they've encountered on their travels. You can now purchase your membership and book your hotel room!

Early-bird pricing available until February 28th, 2017. Get your tickets here: Purchase NADWCON Tickets

Want to reserve your ticket but can't quite afford it until after the early-bird rate date? We also offer the Supporting Membership which if purchased before the cut-off date, will allow you to upgrade at a later date to the early-bird price!

Pre-con tee-shirts also available, in a selection of 3 colors - Purple, Green and Glod - the 3 colors of Octarine!! NADWCON Merchandise

For all other information, please visit the website or follow one of our social media outlets Facebook (NADWConvention), Twitter (@nadwcon), Pinterest (nadwcon), Tumblr (, Instagram (nadwcon) and many more....

*Ogg approved.

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[UK] Terry Pratchett: HisWorld - a new major Terry Pratchett Exhibition will take place at The Salisbury Museum from 16th Sept 2017 to 13 Jan 2018.

"This is an exclusive major exhibition based on the extraordinary life of Sir Terry Pratchett ... This unique exhibition will include artwork by Terry and treasured items owned by Terry which have never previously been on public display. It will also feature over forty original illustrations by Paul Kidby"

Tickets: Salisbury Museum have changed their entrance fees. No longer can you buy an annual ticket at 8GBP. It's gone over to the format of annual membership and day tickets.

Day Ticket Prices are as follows -

Standard day ticket - Adult 7.50GBP Child 3.60GBP Family (2 adults +up to 4 children) 18.50GBP Under 5's Free

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[Australia] Brisbane Arts Theatre present Lords and Ladies as adapted by Irana Brown

Location: 210 Petrie Terrace, PETRIE TERRACE QLD 4000

Dates: 16 September - 21 October 2017 (7.30pm Thursdays, 8.00pm Fridays and Saturdays, 6.30pm Sundays)

Tickets: Adults 34AUD, Concession 28AUD, Group 10+ 27AUD, Student Rush 15AUD (10 mins before curtain)


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[UK] T.A.O.D.S present a performance of BBC4's radio play of Wyrd Sisters as adapted by Vince Foxall

Location:The Todmorden Hippodrome Theatre, Halifax Rd, Tormorden, West Yorkshire OL14 5BB UK

Dates: Fri 29th - Sat 30th September 2017

Times: Doors open at 7pm, Show starts at 7.30pm

Tickets: 6GBP


Box Office: 0333 666 3366

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[UK] Twyford and Ruscombe Theatre Group present Mort as adapted by Stephen Briggs

Location: Loddon Hall, Loddon Hall Road, Twyford, Reading, Berkshire, RG10 9JA

Dates: Thursday 5th October - Sat 7th October 2017

Times: 8pm

Tickets: 7-10GBP (concessions available if ordered in advance)


Box Office: 0118 328 2825

To buy tickets online: Terry Pratchett's MORT Tickets

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[Ireland] The 2017 Irish Discworld Convention will take place from 6-9th October 2017 [the weekend of my 46th Birthday, hint, hint - Ed] at the Cork International Hotel.

It has SOLD OUT of tickets but if you wish to get on the waiting list do so here:

Irish Discworld Convention Waiting List

To keep up with all the news that is happening visit their website here:

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[UPDATED, UK] Studio Theatre Club present Raising Steam as adapted by Stephen Briggs

It has been postponed until 2018/19

6. Recurring Monthly Fan Meetings

[UPDATED, UK] The Broken Drummers meet at The Monkey Puzzle, Paddington, London, W2 1JQ, England at 7pm. For more information contact Helen Nicholls on

Unless otherwise stated the Drummers meet on the first Monday of each month.

Additional Summer Drinks Meetup on the 25th June at 12.30pm at the Monkey Puzzle pub

The Drummers are now holding irregular weekend meet-ups in addition to their regular Mondays. Dates are posted on their Facebook page and sent out via their mailing list.

The Drummers are always happy to welcome new visitors. You can find out more at: or Broken Dummers Facebook Page

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[Adelaide, Australia] The City of Small Gods is a group for fans in Adelaide and South Australia. They have regular monthly dinner and games nights, longer games days, plus play outings, craft-y workshops, and fun social activities throughout the year. For more info and to join their mailing list, visit:

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[Brisbane, Australia] The Pratchett Partisans meet monthly at either Brisbane or Indooroopilly to eat, drink and chat about all things Pratchett. For more info about their next meetup, check out: The Pratchett Partisans Facebook Group

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[Melbourne, Australia] The Victorian Discworld Klatch is a social group for fans of Discworld and Terry Pratchett. We meet monthly for fun activities and to talk all things Pratchetty. Information on our current event can be found on Victorian Discworld Klatch Facebook Group or email

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[Perth, Australia] The Treacle Mining Corporation meetup to celebrate the works of Sir Terry Pratchett, and welcome any fans of science fiction and fantasy.

Join them for their monthly discussion of Discworld, Terry Pratchett and all things sci-fi and fantasy. They meet the first Monday of each month, subject to holidays, and all are welcome.

The group meets up at Carpe Cafe, 526 Murray Street, Perth, WA. Meeting at a cafe means they are under-18 friendly!

For details follow them on Twitter @TreacleMiningCo, Instagram treacle_mining_corporation, and Facebook Treacle Mining Corporation Facebook Group

Otherwise message Alexandra Ware directly at

Unless otherwise stated the group meets up on the first Monday of each month.

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[Sydney, Australia] Sydney Drummers normally meet on the first Monday of every month.

Meeting location: 3 Wise Monkeys, 555 George Street, Sydney, 2000 from 6:30pm

For more information contact Sue (AKA Granny Weatherwax) on

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[Sydney, Australia] Western Drummers (western suburbs of Sydney NSW Australia) meet 6pm on the third Tuesday of the month at the Nepean Rowing Club for dinner chat and games.

Western Drummers Facebook Group

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* Calling USA / Canadian Fans *

Appreciate Discworld and Sir Terry Pratchett? Want to chat and gather with other Discworld fans in the US and Canada? Regional Discworld fan Facebook groups are linked below!

Holy Wood Dreams (covers WA, OR, CA, NV, AZ, NM, and HI):

Holy Wood Dreams Facebook Page

Central US Discworld Fans (covers ID, MT, WY, ND, SD, NE, UT, CO, KS, OK, and TX):

Central US Discworld Fans Facebook Group

Midwest Discworld Fans (covers IL, IN, WI, MI, KY, MN, IA, and MO):

Midwest Discworld Fans Facebook Group

Southeast US Pratchett Fans (covers AR, LA, TN, MS, AL, GA, NC, SC, and FL):

Southeast US Pratchett Fans Facebook Group

Mid-Atlantic Discworld Fans (covers PA, OH, WV, VA, Washington DC, and MD):

Mid-Atlantic Discworld Fans Facebook Group

New England Discworld Fans (covers DE, NJ, NY, Ct, RI, MA, VT, NH, and ME):

New England Discworld Fans Facebook Group

Canadian Discworld Fans (covers Canada and Alaska):

Canadian Discworld Fans Facebook Group

If you are in a border state or a province between two groups, feel free to join both groups.

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[Australia] Drumknott's Irregulars is a newly established Terry Pratchett social group based in Canberra. The group is open to anyone and their events are not heavily themed.

Facebook: Drumknott's Irregulars Facebook Group

Google Groups: Drumknott's Irregulars Google Group

7. 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 edit your letters with a 1970s View-Master. For some reason.

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.

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* From: "Sally Chinery"


On 13th September I will be doing a sponsored Memory Walk in aid of the Alzheimer's Society It will be 27 miles long and I will doing it mostly on my own. I can't get to the big organised events as they are at weekends and as I work at weekends it's a bit difficult. So I've organised my own little event. I chose to support the Alzheimer's Society in memory of Sir Terry Pratchett who battled with a form of the Embuggerance and we all know the sad outcome of that fight. Through Sir Terry I have discovered many wonderful friends through the Discworld Universe, people who I would never even of heard of if I had never picked up a copy of Soul Music all those years ago. So please could I ask you all to Be More Terry and take the time to visit my Just Giving Fundraising page and donate a few Ankh-Morpork Dollars to help the Alzheimer's Society in their work to fight the Embuggerance and give support to those affected by it. You can find the Page at

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* From : "Angelique Cassam"

I'm looking for a good home for a few items from my collection, and hope a true Discworld fan will find them a wonderful edition to their own collection.

I have two professionally framed prints: Greebo, and Reaper Man. I believe Greebo is a limited number print, however having it framed I cannot check the number (quite silly of me). Both are signed by Sir Terry Pratchett.

The full set of Unseen Library novels. All of which are in absolute mint condition, they have been lovingly cared for.

I also have two collectors' pins: Death and Lord Vetinari.

All of which come with extremely high resolution photos, and no imperfections; They are all very well loved.

If you are interested in any of my collection and would like photos or more details, please contact me via email, thank you.

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* From: "David Kelly"

I've been receiving your newsletter for many years now, but this is the first time I've ever emailed you. I'm not honestly sure why, I just... never have.

I've recently gathered up and re-shelved my Pratchett collection, and have discovered that the 41 main-line novels fit precisely onto two side-by-side bookshelves. It's a shame I couldn't get the Science books in their proper places, too, but they have an honourable home on the Pratchett Overflow shelf (of which I will soon need a second, once I get my Long Earth books back from my parents...)

Since this is the first time in a long while I've had the whole collection in order, I've also started a full re-read of the Discworld, from start to finish. I'm through to 'Guards! Guards!' now - which is just as good on this read as every other - and along the way a big question formed itself in my head:


There are a lot of hats on the Discworld which seem to absorb some of their previous wearer's essence. The Archancellor's Hat is the obvious example (it talks!), but there's also the crown of Lancre. Then I remembered Rincewind in 'Interesting Times', who returns to normal the instant he puts his hat on... and the Opera Ghost's mask in 'Maskerade' has a similar effect. Are there more?

And, perhaps more importantly, in light of all this, has anyone dared to try on one of PTerry's famous hats since his death...?

Thanks for the years of entertainment (and here's hoping there's many more to follow),

Jason replies: One of Terry's hats was given to Neil Gaiman at Terry's memorial on the 14th April 2016. Neil went to put the hat on but stopped short and said "No. I can't". He did however put it on later for photographs.

8. DiscTrivia

We're back with five challenging trivia questions for you - this month the questions are some of those we were asked at the Oxford Story Museum quiz. Good luck, Jason

What was the working title for Feet of Clay?
What kind of hat does Walter Plinge wear?
What star sign was Rincewind born under?
In what year was Stephen Briggs credited being the first person to adapt Discworld for the stage.
What is the name of Harry King's wife?

The (hopefully correctly spelled) answers can be found at the end of this issue.

9. The Fifth Elephant Audio books - a comparison

Comparison by Dennis Pelton

There are two audio book versions of The Fifth Elephant available:

1) Abridged, read by Tony Robinson (3 hrs or so)

Abridged by Keith Darvill

2) Complete, read by Stephen Briggs (10 hrs, 45 mins)

Disclaimers: I have no personal relationship with either of the narrators, nor any financial interest in either of the recordings. Also, I detest abridged editions.

The Fifth Elephant is, as everyone should know, one of the best of the always-wonderful Discworld books. These recordings allow the listener to enjoy without needing to focus their eyes on a page, e.g. while driving.


The Robinson edition is abridged. The plot is intact--you will be able to discuss the book with your friends or your book club. However, you will miss much of the exceptional and clever writing that makes a Pratchett book worth many a re-read. Example (regarding clues): You ended up finding a wooden leg, a silk slipper and a feather at the scene of a crime and constructing an elegant theory involving a one-legged ballet dancer and a production of Chicken Lake. This commentary is missing, along with much else, from the abridged edition.

Robinson's voice is in rather a higher register than Briggs'. Which you prefer is a matter of personal taste, of course, but in my opinion Briggs has a wider vocal range and so his takes on the character voices can be more easily distinguished. Perhaps it's just my poor hearing. I prefer the different dialects that Briggs uses as well.

The volume on the Robinson recordings has much more variance than on the Briggs. If you're listening on headphones or in a quiet room this may not be a problem, but in a vehicle with normal road noise you will have to turn up the quiet bits and then the louder passages will be overpowering.

Another technical note--I was listening to the MP3 version of the unabridged edition. There is a bit of a skip when it shifts tracks--you'll miss a word or part of a word. That's downright annoying.

My evaluation: go with the unabridged recording by Stephen Briggs, and get the real thing, not the MP3. It's the most expensive, of course. :-(

Dennis G. Pelton

Lookout Mountain Bookstore

10. Review: Official Opening of the Terry Pratchett Owl Parliament at Birdworld : 28th April 2017

Review by Rachel Rowlands

The official opening was well attended by a variety of Discworld fans. Many were in costume, some were showing their colours via T-shirts and pin badges. Nevertheless, they were there in force. Terry's hat oversaw everything from the mini podium.

Rob Wilkins gave a rousing speech about Terry's love for wildlife including Terry's love of his own huge array of domestic animals, his tortoises, the chickens and the fact that Terry kept cats like other houses keep mice, they were everywhere (and remain everywhere even now).

Rob also told us about how wonderful it was to see the completed parliament as he reminisced about how the idea for the owl parliament came about on the back of a fag packet (as all good ideas do).

Rob then proceeded to cut the ribbon on the entrance of the Owl parliament and then did something that he has always wanted to do. He sprayed a bottle of champagne over the corner of the owl parliament and raised the bottle to the sky with the heartfelt words "Happy Birthday Terry!"

Immediately after the opening, there was a charity auction with auctioneer Pat Harkin. The auction contained many of Terry's books signed and/or stamped along with some prints and a couple of the Memorial folios. Also up for grabs was the opportunity to feed the penguins alongside Rob later in the day.

The auction raised a total of 1156GBP for the World Owl Trust.

Later a Q&A session was held with Rob Wilkins and Stephen Briggs. Many things were talked about, mainly memories about producing the documentary Back In Black, bits about the HisWorld exhibition and discussions about what could possibly happen in the future. There was only two real items of real interest to those not in attendance, one was that Stephen's performance of Raising Steam (which was due to happen in Nov) was being postponed and the other was that The Watch series is still on the cards (probably after Good Omens has aired.. sssshh that's a secret).

That's all we can tell you from the Q&A, other than Rob told us all far more than he should have done as per usual.

An Owl display was up next with the drawing of the raffle and awarding of the competition prizes.

We then watched Rob feed the penguins with Andrea Richardson (who was the lucky winner in the auction) and that was the day effectively over.

Birdworld had on sale for that day only some very special keyrings to commemorate the day which I duly bought on my way out.

[not quite a commemorative mug though.. talking of commemorative mugs - 20 years of Discworld Monthly Mugs are still available until the end of June - RR]

11. Review: Worlds of Imagination

Review by Rachel Rowlands

The Mayor of Beaconsfield Patrick Hogan was coming to the end of his tenure and as part of his work as mayor he ran a series of Charity events to raise money for local charities.

Worlds of Imagination at Bekonscot model village was the last of these events.

The evening was based around the Discworld series of books as Beaconsfield was the home town of Terry when he was growing up. Terry used to work for the Bucks Free Press in the town and in his own words got his education at the local library, (Do visit the library, they have a memorial plaque to Terry on the wall outside)

On a wonderfully warm evening, a large array of various dignitaries, local supporters and fans arrived at the model village for a very special night of entertainment and a special unveiling of a new resident to the model village.

Upon arrival, we were given a choice of beverage and we settled down to watch Patrick give his opening speech of the evening before watching a short performance of Wyrd Sisters by the local youth theatre.

I will be honest with you about the performance. It was very bitty and jumped from the beginning of the story to the very end without any explanation, (a narrator would have helped if there had been one).

It left the whole audience quite confused as to what was happening. what we got of the play was enjoyable enough though. The performers projected their voices well enough that the astronauts on the ISS heard them , and the highlight was the fool, who very capably threw himself on the floor like a professional stunt double.

There was some glaring errors on behalf of whoever directed this though, Granny was played like she was a stroppy teenager, and Magrat was dressed in black and was more Granny than Granny was. The rest of the casting was spot on though and made for an enjoyable romp through a very familiar story to the fans in the audience.

Next we had the delightfully fun Jacqui Hogan as Lady Sybil give us an introduction to the world of the Discworld.

Her little dragon named Lil-let sat on her shoulder throughout the talk (good as gold that little swamp dragon) as we were taken through the major characters and places of the Disc.

Jacqui's enthusiasm for the Discworld shone with every word and we were a little saddened when her talk came to an end as we had enjoyed it so much.

The caterers had cooked a wonderful set of meals for everyone, from chicken pasta to fish pie with some very moreish desserts served by the local cub scouts. Everything from strawberry meringues to chocolate brownies. We ate more than our fair share of the desserts as a result. A mouthful wasn't enough of any of them.

Last event of the evening was a sweepstake quiz that would lead us to finding the brand new black hatted resident of the village. The brand new model of Sir Terry Pratchett was to be found by the large fire that had taken hold of one of the buildings in the village which was being attended to by the villages model fire service. Terry was reporting on the fire for the Bucks Free Press (a representation of their offices can be found within the village).

The model village is a wonderful attraction to meander in, the event was a lot of fun. It's not every day that we get to play in a model village after dark !

The event was to raise money for the Mayor of Beaconsfield Charity appeal which supports two charities. This year it was Rennie Grove Hospice care and Padstones which supports the young homeless of the Thames Valley.

The evening raised a huge 2,753GBP which took the appeal total up to 10,000GBP

A huge congratulations to everyone involved and a massive thank you to the Air Corps cadets, local cub scouts and all the staff at Bekonscot model village.

12. Review: Maskerade, Newbury, Berkshire

Review by Jason Anthony

On Friday 19th June Rachel and I travelled 150 miles east to Newbury to see the Watermill Theatre's production of Maskerade as adapted for the stage by Stephen Briggs.

The Watermill Theatre is a lovely building set in some beautiful countryside and features a large bar and restaurant as well as a reasonable size theatre. The stage crew had been very clever and had created a very flexible set that in a matter of seconds could be very easily transformed into different locations. We particularly loved the slide out bed set!

Director John Hicks is has previously directed several Discworld plays. I've previously seen his productions of Carpe Jugulum, The Truth and Moving Pictures.

Maskerade isn't a play that I've seen as often as say Wyrd Sisters so it was quite refreshing to see something different being performed. That being said we are going to see another performance of Maskerade next week in West Wales.

The cast were all very good and Granny and Nanny were both excellently portrayed by Isabel Oettinger and Phyllis Bennett. Agnes Nitt was also perfect, and Rhiannon Bland who played her had more than a little passing resemblance to Terry's daughter Rhianna.

I particularly loved the idea having the Opera Ghost's notes enlarged to A3 size to make them readable by the audience and read out with massive enthusiasm by Pam Hicks (who had been working particularly hard on the maniacal laughter and the ever increasing number of exclamation points!). We saw the production on the Friday night and I understand that by the end of the run on Saturday Pam had lost her voice.

Overall it was a hugely enjoyable production and I wouldn't hesitate to recommend both the Watermill Theatre and any other productions by director John Hicks.

13. Terry's Birthday Competition Result

Last month we decided to celebrate what should have been Terry's 69th birthday by giving away two hardback books that contain many of his early works - Dragons at Crumbling Castle and The Witch's Vacuum Cleaner.

We asked you to send us the answer to the following question:

What pseudonym did Terry write his children's stories under for the Bucks Free Press?

The answer we were looking for was, of course, Uncle Jim.

I am pleased to say this time all 94 of you that entered had the correct answer. The randomly selected winner of these two great books is: Jim Morrell for Norfolk.

We'll get your prize wrapped up and off to you as soon as possible.

14. Ankh Morpork Times Competition

This month we have one of the Oxford Story Museum's A3 prints of The Ankh Morpork times to give away. These lovely posters feature various brief stories from the front page of the Discworld's premier newspaper. Including our favourite headline "Naked Bake Off Havoc!"

In order to win this lovely print you need to answer the following question:

Q1. What is the name of The Ankh Morpork Times' iconographer?

Send your answer *and* your full postal address to before Friday 23rd June 2017. Your address will only be used for sending out your prize should you be the lucky winner. Once prizes are sent out all address details will be destroyed. Entries received after the closing date or sent to any other address will be ignored. No more than one entry per person will be accepted - multiple entries will result in a ban from the competition. Failure to answer the questions or provide your postal address will prevent you from being entered into the competition. Answers to the questions must not be posted to any websites before the competition ends. The judges' decision is final. The competition is open to all readers.

15. The End

Please let us have any submissions for issue 243 of Discworld Monthly BEFORE Friday 23rd June 2017.

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* DiscTrivia Results *

What was the working title for Feet of Clay?
Words in the Head.
What kind of hat does Walter Plinge wear?
A black beret.
What star sign was Rincewind born under?
The Small Boring Group of Faint Stars
In what year was Stephen Briggs credited being the first person to adapt Discworld for the stage.
What is the name of Harry King's wife?
Euphemia or "Effie" or Dutches (his petname for her).

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