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pratchett_news
29 December 2008 @ 05:05 pm
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Signed novel raises £760 for Alzheimer’s Society

29 December 2008 Comment!

Terry Pratchett donated a signed copy of Making Money to an auction for the New Forest branch of the Alzheimer’s Society. The book was auctioned off for £760.

This article quotes Terry Pratchett as saying, “I am, along with many others, scrabbling to stay ahead long enough to be there when the cure comes along…. It is a shock to find out that funding for Alzheimer’s research is just 3% of that to find cancer cures.”

Nullus Anxietas (Australian convention 2009) updates: convention ticket sale, Gala Dinner tickets available

28 December 2008 (20:48)  1 Comment

The Nullus Anxietas poster

Nullus Anxietas, the Australian Discworld convention 2009, is offering tickets $15 off for the holiday season, with the offer ending the 31st of December. Additionally, the Gala Dinner tickets (which are bought separately) are now on sale.

A preliminary program can be seen at the Nullus Anxietas website.

Living With Alzheimer’s to air in January; more information about Alzheimer’s documentary

28 December 2008 Comment!

After hearing about the Alzheimer’s documentary (full title Terry Pratchett: Living With Alzheimer’s) off-and-on for almost a year, MedicalNewsToday.com has lots of information as to when the documentary will be aired and what it will contain.

The IWC Media-produced documentary will be aired in January on BBC Two, UK, as part of a documentary series focused on mental health called BBC Headroom.

To read the rest visit the FromRimToHub.com page for the article by clicking the above large-text link.

Terry Pratchett owns Beard Of The Year?

28 December 2008 Comment!

The informal Beard Liberation Front has announced their nominations for Beard Of The Year 2008, and Terry Pratchett is included in the list. Other competitors are singer Jarvis Cocker, comedian Eddie Izzard, singer Tom Jones, former football player Roy Keane, Archbishop Of Canterbury Rowan Williams, and Wikipedia creator Jimmy Wales.

Edit: It has now been announced that singer Tom Jones and Archbishop Of Canterbury Rowan Williams both won the title for 2008.

Danny Boyle: Truckers film “a victim of this economic crisis”

28 December 2008 Comment!

Several sources are reporting that Danny Boyle, who had previously planned to direct Truckers, has said that the project has been canceled. In a Q & A with SeattlePi.com, Danny Boyle said, “I’ve been developing a film based on the first book of Terry Pratchett’s Bromeliad Trilogy. But the project seems to have fallen apart — a victim of this economic crisis that’s not supposed to be affecting the movie business.”

New Discworld miniatures of Death, Weatherwax, Vimes, Ogg, Rincewind

27 December 2008 Comment!

Micro Art Studio is now issuing a series of Discworld miniatures. Miniatures of Death, Granny Weatherwax, Sam Vimes, Nanny Ogg, and Rincewind are already available.

Miniatures of Nobby Nobbs and the Luggage are planned.

The miniatures are based on the artwork of Paul Kidby. According to Micro Art Studio, the miniatures are “30 mm scale high quality metal cast” miniatures and are sold unpainted.

Discworld Collector’s Edition Calendar 2009

26 December 2008 Comment!

The Orion Publishing Group has published a Discworld calendar for the year 2009. This year’s featured artists include Paul Kidby and David Wyatt, who have done several book covers in the Discworld series, Stephen Player, who did conceptual art for the Hogfather mini-series, Les Edwards, David Frankland, Mel Grant, Dominic Harman, Edward Miller, Jackie Morris, Sandy Nightingale, and Jon Sullivan.

The calendar is in full-colour and features scenes and characters from the novels.

Neil Gaiman biography features foreword by Terry Pratchett

26 December 2008 Comment!

A biography about Neil Gaiman, who co-wrote Good Omens with Terry Pratchett, features a foreword by Terry Pratchett. Titled A Slightly Worn But Still Quite Lovely Foreword, the foreword states of Neil Gaiman, “You’re in the hands of a master conjurer. Or, quite possibly, a wizard.”

The biography, Prince of Stories: The Many Worlds of Neil Gaiman, was released October 28, 2008.

Vadim Jean speaks: “It helps that I am a fan.”

25 December 2008 Comment!

A University Of Warwick podcast released on September 17, 2008 interviews Colour Of Magic director and screen-writer Vadim Jean.

Jean adapted and directed the first live-action film based on the Discworld novels, Hogfather, and subsequently adapted the first two Discworld novels into another made-for-TV film, titled The Colour Of Magic. The next planned adaptation is Going Postal, based on the book of the same name.

To read the rest visit the FromRimToHub.com page for the article by clicking the above large-text link.

Ankh-Morpork, now on Second Life

25 December 2008 Comment!

As of October 27, a group of fans (Ankh-Morpork Experience) opened up a world on Second Life based on the city of Ankh-Morpork. In a message sent to members of the Terry Pratchett Fans group, the fans announced “THE GRAND OPENING OF THE ANKH MORPORK EXPERIENCE SIM.”

The Second Life world includes the fans’ conceptions of many buildings found in Ankh-Morpork, including the infamous bar The Mended Drum, the patrician’s palace, a temple, and some of the guilds’ buildings.

To read the rest visit the FromRimToHub.com page for the article by clicking the above large-text link.

Terry Pratchett on With Great Pleasure: Recording available

25 December 2008 Comment!

Today at 12:00 in England BBC Radio 4 aired a special holiday edition of their program With Great Pleasure, which featured Terry Pratchett and some of his favorite pieces of writing.

A recording of the fifty-three minute show is available via BBC’s Listen Again feature, however the BBC site requires Real Player to play. (For those who are worried about Real Player’s security holes and intrusive nature, Real Alternative is an open-source software that many users use as an alternative.) (This is in no way an endorsement. Don’t blame us if installing either piece of software causes problems with your computer.)

To read the rest visit the FromRimToHub.com page for the article by clicking the above large-text link.

Four Discworld novels in Amazon’s Hall Of Fame

24 December 2008 Comment!

Amazon looks back on the ten years since it started (and subsequently became a book sales juggernaut) with a Hall Of Fame listing the yearly top ten bestsellers, and four of Terry Pratchett’s Discworld novels make it onto the lists.

Carpe Jugulum is the fourth bestselling title for 1998, The Fifth Elephant is the eighth bestselling title for 1999, Night Watch is the second bestselling title for 2002, and Monstrous Regiment is the seventh bestselling title for 2003.

Other books in the Hall Of Fame are the Harry Potter books, Who Moved My Cheese?, The God Delusion, The Time Traveler’s Wife, and The Kite Runner.

Pratchett books often stolen from South Wales libraries

24 December 2008 Comment!

South Wales libraries report 53,000 books stolen or not returned in the last two years–and at the forefront of “the most popular books to be taken and never returned” are Terry Pratchett’s novels, the Harry Potter books by J. K. Rowling, and books by Roald Dahl and Jacqueline Wilson.

Pratchett awarded honorary degree at Trinity College Dublin

23 December 2008 Comment!

Terry Pratchett, along with four other recipients, received an honorary degree at Trinity College Dublin at their Winter commencements ceremony on December 12, 2008. He and acclaimed naturalist and broadcaster Sir David Attenborough received Doctors in Letters, while astrophysicist Dame Jocelyn Bell Burnell, researcher Dame Ann Dowling, and criminologist David P. Farrington were awarded degrees in science.

Terry Pratchett gave a public interview the next day (December 13th), at which more than four hundred fifty fans–including the Trinity College Dublin Dean Of Research Dr. David Lloyd–were present. The interview, which was chaired by Lloyd, was followed by a reception.

Tim White, cover artist for early Terry Pratchett novels, now on-line

23 December 2008 Comment!

Tim White's cover for Strata

The website for Tim White, the cover artist for the early Terry Pratchett novels The Dark Side Of The Sun and Strata (New English Library paperback editions), is on-line again after a hiatus. The site features his cover art for Terry Pratchett’s novels as well as for Neuromancer by Gibson, Hothouse by Brian Aldiss, and an anthology of Asimov’s works.

The artwork for The Dark Side Of The Sun (shown left) is available as a print and a postcard. Interestingly, as the website says, “The robot fly is a miniature surveillance device disguised as an insect. An earlier drawing of a robot fly by the artist coincided almost perfectly with the story and was used with few alterations for the final cover design.”

Tim White's cover for The Dark Side Of The Sun

The cover art for Strata is shown at the right.

Custom prints (of various sizes), cards, t-shirts, jewelry, mugs, and other miscellaneous items are available on the website.

Limited edition of Nation, exclusively from Waterstones

23 December 2008 Comment!

A limited edition of Nation is available for pre-order at Waterstones. The book jacket features stars, constellations, and a telescope.

The Limited Edition Cover

To read the rest visit the FromRimToHub.com page for the article by clicking the above large-text link.

Random House CEO: Pratchett part of “an amazing lineup” with “enormous commercial potential”; Unseen Academicals to be published in 2009?

21 December 2008 Comment!

Random House CEO Markus Dohle stated in a December 18th memo that Terry Pratchett’s writing is part of “an amazing lineup” of works to be published in 2009, which he expects to help Random House through a year that economists predict will be bleak.

Dohle mentions that in 2009, Random House’s many imprints have plans to publish hardcovers, paperbacks, audiobooks, and e-books with “enormous commercial potential” by many popular authors, including Margaret Atwood, Maeve Binchy, Ann Brashares, Lee Child, Deepak Chopra, Ann Coulter, Richard Dawkins, John Grisham, Stephen Hawking, Carl Hiaasen, Tracy Kidder, Sophie Kinsella, Dean Koontz, Rachael Ray, Danielle Steel, Martha Stewart, Anne Tyler, and of course Terry Pratchett.

To read the rest visit the FromRimToHub.com page for the article by clicking the above large-text link.

 
 
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20 December 2008 @ 03:05 pm
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Pratchett letter to The Times on Alzheimer’s (07 October 2008)

07 October 2008 Comment

In a letter to the Times
in early October, Terry Pratchett reiterates his statements on the need for public recognition of Alzheimer’s. He writes:
Today, the Alzheimer’s Society publishes a new report, ‘Dementia: out of the shadows’…. I am calling for an end to the stigma and misunderstanding that surround this embuggerance of a condition….

New research shows that half of UK adults believe dementia is a condition plagued by stigma….

That’s why I’m calling for urgent investment in public awareness campaigns on dementia….

If we bring dementia out of the shadows, we can kill it.
Dementia: Out Of The Shadows can be found at the Alzheimer’s Society website.

Pratchett says, “I felt totally alone, with the world receding from me in every direction” when he was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s

07 October 2008 Comment

As part of the launch of a new study in the stigma associated with Alzheimer’s, Out Of The Shadows, Terry Pratchett wrote an essay describing his experiences with Alzheimer’s published by the Daily Mail:
Seven hundred thousand people who have dementia in this country are not heard. I’m fortunate; I can be heard. Regrettably, it’s amazing how people listen if you stand up in public and give away $1million for research into the disease, as I have done.

Why did I do it? I regarded finding I had a form of Alzheimer’s as an insult and decided to do my best to marshal any kind of forces I could against this wretched disease.
To read the rest visit the FromRimToHub.com page for the article by clicking the above large-text link.

Pratchett is second best-selling adult author in the U.K.

04 October 2008 (14:35) Comment!

Express.co.uk reports that according to a list compiled by the market researchers Nielsen, Terry Pratchett is the second best-selling author of adult literature in the U.K. in the past three years, after opinion writer Jeremy Clarkson.

Other authors on the list include Katie Price, Ian McEwan, Ian Rankin, Sophie Kinsella, and Alexander McCall Smith.

Children’s authors, such as J.K. Rowling, are not included in the list.

Pratchett signing in Southport and interview

02 October 2008 Comment!

On October 2nd, Terry Pratchett stopped at Broadhurst’s of Southport for a signing. Broadhurst’s won the privilege to host the event by putting together an award-winning Terry Pratchett window display.

SouthportVisitor.co.uk interviewed Pratchett at the event. To quote the article:
[Terry Pratchett] praised the Southport bookshop and said: “I can’t actually believe it’s real. I find it extremely hard to believe there are still bookshops like this with… books.
To read the rest visit the FromRimToHub.com page for the article by clicking the above large-text link.

Pratchett on Washington Post chat (01 Oct. 2008)

01 October 2008 Comment!

Terry Pratchett chatted with Washington Post readers on Wednesday, Oct. 1st on Book World Live for a discussion about his most recent children’s book, Nation. To quote the full transcript:
Terry Pratchett: Hello, it’s Terry Pratchett, here to talk about my book Nation, and anything else. Except cookery, or mathematics. I’d like to start by thanking the Washington Post for the wonderful review in Book World. It’s nice when people spot the little twiddly bits. I was pleased to see that. The reviews have been very encouraging around the globe.

Houston, TX : How did you get the idea for Nation?
Terry Pratchett: I wish I knew, because if I did I would go back to the same place with a bucket. The initial idea and the image of Mau standing on the beach defying his gods came to me instantly, late in 2003, and it hung around for a long time…. what I originally had in mind was something like the explosion of Krakatoa, and the shipwreck of the Sweet Judy is very loosely based on a real event that happened after the volcano exploded.
To read the rest visit the FromRimToHub.com page for the article by clicking the above large-text link.

Terry Pratchett speaks out about Alzheimer’s at Tory party conference

14 October 2008 2 Comments

Terry Pratchett spoke at the September 29th Tory party conference, opening up about his experience with Alzheimer’s and explaining why the U.K. needs to increase its funding for Alzheimer’s research, concluding his speech to a standing ovation.

The non-conservative Pratchett slowed several times during the speech, saying the disease was “making the letters dance.” He compared Alzheimer’s to a “slow motion car crash.”

“Always, at the back of your mind, [is] the thought that sooner or later you’ll go through the windscreen,” Pratchett said.

He continued his ongoing comparison of Alzheimer’s to cancer, saying that while cancer is no longer a taboo subject, Alzheimer’s is still “stuck in a medieval fog of superstition, misunderstanding, and silence.”

To read the rest visit the FromRimToHub.com page for the article by clicking the above large-text link.

Terry Pratchett on Second Life (Updated: transcript)

9 October 2008 Comment!

Terry Pratchett answered questions on Second Life in a live chat starting at 3:00 EST today in a promotional event for the release of Nation. Terry Pratchett (second life name TerryPratchett Morpork) introduced himself, after much digital applause, with “Hello everybody! Sorry, I’m new at all of this kind of stuff and so can anyone tell me how to get the rocket launcher?” to much lol-ing.
Terry Pratchett in front of a giant picture of Terry Pratchett on Second LifeAfter some initial banter with the fans (”As far as I am concerned, my books are Second Life.”), the questions and answers started. (The banter never really stopped.) Some highlights:

[12:03] Matty567 Dallagio: Why was “Nation” not set on Discworld?
[12:04] TerryPratchett Morpork: Good question; for one thing, the fact of it being on Discworld would change all kind of things that I could do. After all, Nation is hardly full of laughs. Setting Nation on a thinly disguised “alternate” world does, I think, give it more power and urgency.

[12:05] Matty567 Dallagio: Why a slightly alternate Earth instead of the real one?
[12:07] TerryPratchett Morpork: Because the real one has already happened. I wanted this world, but with a few interesting alterations. One details I’m sure you will have noticed is that Carl Sagan is still alive in that alternate earth.

To read the rest visit the FromRimToHub.com page for the article by clicking the above large-text link.

Another Nation review

29 September 2008 Comment!

The favorable reviews of Nation continue, as Michael Dirda writes (slight spoilers at the link) in The Washington Post that “no reader is every likely to forget Terry Pratchett’s Nation
No reader is ever likely to forget Terry Pratchett’s Nation…. Nation is — as Terry Pratchett tells us in his author’s note — “set in a parallel universe, a phenomenon known only to advanced physicists and anyone who has ever watched any episode of any SF series, anywhere.” It is also what’s called a crossover novel, which means that while Nation may be aimed primarily at bright-eyed young adults– as were Philip Pullman’s His Dark Materials trilogy and the Harry Potter books of J.K. Rowling — many grizzled old adults are likely to enjoy it, too. You don’t even need to know anything about Pratchett’s earlier work: It’s a stand-alone book, with no connection whatsoever to Discworld.

Nation remains at heart a novel of ideas, a ferocious questioning of vested cultural attitudes and beliefs. In form it is a classic “Robinsonade,” that is, a book in which characters are marooned on a desert island and there create a little civilization of their own….

It is a thrilling story.
Nation is out already in the U.K., and can be pre-ordered in the U.S.
 
 
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Danny Boyle to direct Truckers?

20 September 2008 Comment! Coming Soon reports that Danny Boyle wants to direct an animated Truckers movie based on Terry Pratchett’s children’s book.
“You’re more like a ringmaster,” 28 Days Later director Boyle said of directing an animated feature, “[You’re] kind of organizing this huge army of illustrators who can change the movie. It’s really weird.”
Boyle tentatively hopes to work with screenwriter Frank Cottrell Boyce, who has called Truckers his favorite book.
“Part of me thought: brilliant,” Boyce said of hearing Truckers would be adapted for the screen. “That’ll be a great film. But another part of me felt mugged. Truckers was my secret, a blessing I bestowed on the people I most liked.”
Danny Boyle has also directed Sunshine, Trainspotting, and Slumdog Millionaire, and hopes to work with Dreamworks on Truckers.

Pratchett essay on Nation from HarperCollins

19 September Comment! HarperCollins had published an essay Terry Pratchett wrote (slight spoilers at link) on his newest non-Discworld book, Nation which comes out September 30 in the U.S. (It is already available in the U.K.) To quote the essay:
I don’t think I’ve ever worked so hard on a book…
Nation was born several years ago…. About four months later, when I hadn’t even scheduled the book, Indonesia was struck by the most recent tsunami, and I thought: There will be a time for Nation, but it’s not now. The story still cooked itself through, at the back of my mind, while I waited a few years.
After that disaster, I saw footage of people celebrating because the wave, which had flattened their whole village, had miraculously left their new mosque standing. But that seemed to me to be not much of a miracle—one that flattens flimsy huts and fails to disturb a solid-looking house of worship. Surely the miracle of a caring god would have razed his holy temple but left every little house intact? What had in reality taken place was the opposite of a miracle, wasn’t it? The trouble is, we call these things acts of God….
Is this the right kind of topic for a young adult book? Probably none better, I thought.
And the rest of the book fell into place like a clicking Rubik’s cube.

Pre-order and preview Nation

19 September 2008 Comment! American Pratchett fans can now pre-order the U.S. edition of Terry Pratchett’s newest non-Discworld book, Nation, which goes on sale September 30.

The cover blurb:
The sea has taken everything.
Mau is the only one left after a giant wave sweeps his island village away. But when much is taken, something is returned, and somewhere in the jungle Daphne—a girl from the other side of the globe—is the sole survivor of a ship destroyed by the same wave.
Together the two confront the aftermath of catastrophe. Drawn by the smoke of Mau and Daphne’s sheltering fire, other refugees slowly arrive: children without parents, mothers without babies, husbands without wives—all of them hungry and all of them frightened. As Mau and Daphne struggle to keep the small band safe and fed, they defy ancestral spirits, challenge death himself, and uncover a long-hidden secret that literally turns the world upside down. . . .
Internationally revered storyteller Terry Pratchett presents a breathtaking adventure of survival and discovery, and of the courage required to forge new beliefs.
HarperCollins is also offering a sneak peek of Nation.
The U.K. edition of Nation was released September 11.

Competition: Win The Turtle Moves!

19 September 2008 2 Comments Lawrence Watt-Evans’s new guide to the Discworld series, The Turtle Moves!: Discworld’s Story Unauthorized. In celebration of its release last month, FromRimToHub is hosting a competition to win a free copy! Just answer the following question in the comments or by email (fromrimtohub * at * gmail ~dot~ com):
The title of Watt-Evans’s book is taken from rallying cry of the Omnian rebels in Small Gods. If you were to write a Discworld fan guide, what would you call it and why?
You can find a review of The Turtle Moves! at FromRimToHub.com.

Pratchett receives honorary doctorate from Buckinghamshire New University

15 September 2008 Comment! Buckinghamshire New University honored Terry Pratchett for his career in literature and his charity work with an honorary doctorate, Pratchett’s sixth so far.
This was of course another opportunity for an interview with the eloquent Terry Pratchett, and he expands a bit on his first decision to become a writer. After selling his first story for 40 pounds, he said he “bought a very good second-hand typewriter and that was it. I sold a few more stories and I decided that this was going to be for me.”
Terry Pratchett returned the favor to Buckinghamshire New University vice chancellor Ruth Farwell, making her an honorary wizard of the Unseen University, complete with a wizard hat, scroll, badge, and banana.
A video containing the beginning of Pratchett’s speech can be found at the BucksFreePress.co.uk.

Nation promotional campaign on Second Life; Pratchett on Second Life Oct. 9

14 September 2008 Comment! HarperCollins launched a month-long promotional campaign for Nation, Terry Pratchett’s newest non-Discworld novel, on Second Life on September 11.
Terry Pratchett will participate in a live question-and-answer session on Second Life October 9.
Second Lifers can get a look at Mau’s island, digitally imagined, on the digitally created world The Nation. The island will include scenes and locations from Nation, as well as opportunities to win Second Life prizes and real-life prizes through a treasture hunt.

Pratchett interview on Nation

14 September 2008 Comment! Publishers Weekly interviewed Terry Pratchett recently (slight spoilers at the link) about Nation, calling it “more somber,” to which Pratchett responds, “It’s important for the hero to have tragic relief, the opposite of light relief. Let’s not forget that at the very beginning, the young hero has to bury everyone he’s known in his life and spends quite a lot of the book teetering on the edge of insanity. The book deals with issues that can’t be handled lightly.”
The interview takes a bit of a detour, of course, into Alzheimer’s. Pratchett points out that “Alzheimer’s made a mistake, because it hit me with a variant that leaves me still more than capable of thinking and writing and speaking, and a lot of my time now is taken up with publicity for Alzheimer’s funding.”
He also talks a bit about kid’s reading, saying, “when I was a kid I read books well ahead of what my parents thought I read. It’s a wise child that doesn’t always let their parents know what they’re reading. I picked up quite an extensive vocabulary from reading although I must confess that for years I thought the word ‘ogre’ was pronounced ‘ogrey.’ I’d never actually heard it spoken, but I’d read it hundreds of times.”
Most intriguing of all, to those who haven’t yet read Nation Pratchett’s answer to whether or not Nation is “magical”: “That depends.”
Nation came out Sept. 11 in the U.K. and Sept. 30 in the U.S. (it is now available for preorder).

Nation review

14 September 2008 Comment! Amanda Craig of TimesOnline.co.uk reviewed Terry Pratchett’s newest book (slight spoilers at link), Nation, which comes out this month in both the U.K. and the U.S. To quote the review:
It is hard not to see the terrible wave crashing through Mau’s people’s memories as an extended metaphor for the Alzheimer’s that has stricken Pratchett’s ever-fertile mind, and Mau’s struggle to recreate something new out of devastation akin to the author’s grappling with an assault on his creative powers. Yet like all serious writers of fantasy, Pratchett has always been proccupied [sic] with death. It is curious how those who dislike this form of literature believe it to be escapist when in fact it tends towards the opposite, dramatising the sorrow of eternal loss.
Nation, a non-Discworld book, can be ordered on Amazon.co.uk and pre-ordered on Amazon.com.

The Discworld Convention 2008

3 September 2008 3 Comments Many of you were lucky enough to go to the convention–but many more weren’t so lucky (including the admin of this site, a.k.a. me). Fortunately for us, demdike from The Cunning Artificer’s forum was nice enough to be our scribe and write a convention report, in which we learn a bit about Nation, slightly more about Going Postal and other future film adaptations, and a lot about our favorite fandom:

The First Day: Friday, August 22, 2008

[The convention] started (officially) with the Opening Ceremony. There were voice-over messages asking for the stage to be cleared of party debris and on came Lu Tze with his broom. After telling everyone to go home–the Con had been and gone, and the disruption in the Number 7 procrastinator was blamed–the Men in Saffron (1 of the 2 was me) were called in to rewind 72 hours. Cue stone grinding and Tardis noises, the lights went up and Lu Tze and the Men in Saffron had been replaced by Terry.
After briefly touching on his illness (most of which has already been printed online in most places) he spoke about the last year which has propelled him from relative media obscurity to celebrity status.
The evening ended with Terry’s bedtime stories, where the usual nutters turned up in their nightwear clutching their various bed companions (mostly furry). Terry then read from Nation. I had to leave after an hour and a half so I apparently missed the lighter passages. Definitely a darker book than any previously written.

The Second Day: Saturday, August 23, 2008

[Saturday] was spent trying to familiarize myself with the Hotel. Although the standard of the rooms was very high, it lacked the atmosphere of previous venues. The rooms were at the end of very long corridors. There was no one place to congregate, [the hotel] having a number of bars and eating places, so I never saw some people I knew were attending, and some I saw briefly in passing and never again. Although the lectures and workshops were very well attended, quite a lot were scheduled for the same time. In fact the lady running the candle workshop came down the corridor wondering what the queue was for and was quite horrified to find out it was waiting for her. Previously she had had around a dozen people attend and this time it was 60! She had only brought the materials for 60 candles, so had to turn people away.
The Masquerade I shall have to leave others to describe as I took part and was locked up in the ‘Green room’ with the other participants for all of it, but I can say that during the acts the Ankh-Morpork street refuse collector was called and the anonymous disgusting gnoll that came to clear up was none other than our own Pam Gower, and the fact that she was unrecognised pleased her no end, and of course the costume was all her own work as usual. In fact, off stage I didn’t recognise her myself until I overheard her speaking.

The Third Day: Sunday, August 24, 2008

I attended the “2008 Is Wallace Year” lecture given by Ian Stewart and Jack Cohen, which was both entertaining and informative and as usual showed that the Roundworld can be as wierd and wonderful as the Discworld, with many similarities.
Pat had made the great error of describing his audience as sitting ducks–bad move as most of the auction (and every other appearance he made) was punctuated by duck calls. The Octavo made an extremely impressive centrepiece and I had to leave before it came up, because it never would have fitted in the car.
The evening was rounded off by the Gala Dinner and Dragon racing. The meal was very enjoyable except for the fact that I went out for a nicotine fix between courses and someone replaced my pudding with 2 grapes on a plate!
Terry gave a speech mentioning that for half the attendees it was their very first convention, which does raise the question of what has happened to half of the regulars? The last speech was given by Lord Vetinari and his statement of one man one vote and he had it was interrupted by Terry begging to differ. Terry also said that he wasn’t bad–he was just written that way, which amused everyone.
The Dragon racing was enjoyable with a Tote using our free money and despite numerous stewards enquiries, photo finishes and one dragon being lifted and ‘helped’ to the finishing post by Nac Mac Feegles went off very well.

The Fourth Day: Monday, August 25, 2008

[Monday] was spent mostly packing, saying goodbye to friends old and new. The Mob had brought David Jason’s Rincewind hat (the one that had fallen in the water, so suitably snotted), Kring the magical sword, and the Bafta, which Stephen Briggs managed to photograph it held by many people.
During the Meet the Mob presentation it was mentioned that the order of the next films will be Going Postal, Making Money, then Sourcery. Unfortunately there may be limited fan involvement as the next two will be filmed in Hungary due to a lack of suitable buildings here and that most of the action is set amongst architecture.

The Closing Ceremony

The closing ceremony was the usual mix of sadness and joy.
Joy because the prizes were given out, and we were all able to fit into the room together as at the Opening ceremony, but also sadness as one of the prizes for the Guild member who remained in charactor for the whole convention and who had contributed greatly to their guild and in promoting other peoples enjoyment was given an award named for Ewan the young assassin who captured everyone’s heart at the 2006 convention and who died shortly afterwards.
At the very end when the guests and con committee had left the stage there was the voice overs asking for someone to clear the stage of the mess and on came Lu Tze and despite being told we had only just got there, was adamant that we only got one time turn and this time really had to go home, so we did.
Home again, Wadfest next weekend, then the frantic saving for Hogswatch and Nadcon in Arizona.

Many many thanks to demdike for the report!

Pratchett writes on Alzheimer’s drug Aricept

17 August 2008 Comment! The full text Terry Pratchett’s article, which begins with “The NHS is seriously injured,” and was found on page six of today’s News of the World, can be found on the website today. In it, Pratchett complains that the NHS in Britain is not doing it’s job:
A drug called Aricept can slow the progress of the disease, and the good news is it costs just £2.50 a day.
The bad news is there are 400,000 Alzheimer’s sufferers in the U.K. so Aricept has been ruled out for NHS use in the mild stages of the disease everywhere except Scotland…. I’m a millionaire so I have no trouble paying, but there are people who can’t…. I would very much like to know the basis on which these decisions are made because some of them don’t seem to make very much sense. It is interesting to note I could get Viagra for free. I’m not too certain it’s the State’s job to provide Viagra.

He also points out that the NHS is not equipped to handle the upcoming wave of aging baby boomers.
Other interesting tidbits:

My wife and PA both noticed real changes in me after two or three months on it. I used to fumble with buttons and needed help with seatbelts. Now, I get dressed normally and seatbelts slide in first time. Mentally, it’s the difference between a sunny day and an overcast day. Ye Gods, that’s worth it!
—————
I can still work at home and control my environment, and my rare variant of the disease is not yet a real burden. The novels turn up as they always have — only the typing is hard. There will now be a moment when the letter A, say, vanishes. It’s as if the keyboard closes up and the letter A is not there anymore. Then I’ll blink a few times and concentrate and it comes back.
I’ve handed in my driving licence — if my brain won’t let me see that A, it might not let me see the child on the pedestrian crossing. Unlikely, at this stage, but who would risk it?
—————–
And I can afford a voice recognition programme for the computer. There’s no way I’m going to retire, I’ll be writing until I die. It’s my passion. I stood up and said I had Alzheimer’s. I didn’t expect all the fuss, or my mailbox to melt. Good grief, you write best sellers for 25 years in a kind of welcome obscurity, then you catch one lousy disease and every chat show wants to talk to you.
Also, catch Pratchett tomorrow on a special Panorama program called The NHS Postcode: It Could Be You Monday at 8:30 p.m.

Unofficial Discworld guide The Turtle Moves!, now available!

6 August 2008 (21:19) Icon Comment! The Turtle Moves: Discworld’s Story So Far (The Turtle Moves!: Discworld’s Story Unauthorized in the U.S.) is now available in paperback. Published by Benbella Books, the unofficial guide “offers 62 chapters describing the Discworld for fan and neophyte alike,” according to the product description on Amazon.co.uk. Another description reads:
From the banks of the river Ankh to the walls of Sto Lat, the entirety of Terry Pratchett’s renowned Discworld series is explored in this expansive resource. Essays discussing a range of topics—among them Pratchett’s place in literary canon, the nature of the Disc itself, and the causes and results of the Discworld phenomenon—accompany a chronological account of the more than three dozen novels in the series. Perfect for veteran fans and neophytes alike, this is the complete guide to the world on the cosmic turtle’s back.
The book is “highly recommended by those in the know,” according to fan newsletter Wossname.

Pullman, Pratchett, and Potter author denounce age banding for children’s books

5 August 2008 Icon Comment! Prominent children’s author Philip Pullman is leading a campaign against age banding, a program designed by publishers to guide consumers buying books for children. More than 700 authors and illustrators, including of course Terry Pratchett, have signed the Statement by Philip Pullman, which says, in part, “the proposal to put an age-guidance figure on books for children is ill-conceived, damaging to the interests of young readers, and highly unlikely, despite the claims made by those publishers promoting the scheme, to make the slightest difference to sales.”
The statement also claims that “each child is unique, and so is each book. Accurate judgments about age suitability are impossible, and approximate ones are worse than useless….
“Everything about a book is already rich with clues about the sort of reader it hopes to find – jacket design, typography, cover copy, prose style, illustrations. These are genuine connections with potential readers, because they appeal to individual preference. An age-guidance figure is a false one, because it implies that all children of that age are the same.”
Pratchett explained why he was opposed to age banding, saying “when I was a child I read books far too old for me and sometimes far too young for me. Every reading child is different. Introduce them to the love of reading, show them the way to the library and let them get on with it. The space between the young readers eyeballs and the printed page is a holy place and officialdom should trample all over it at their peril.”

Most children’s publishers in the U.K., including Scholastic and HarperCollins, were to introduce age banding this fall. The plan, led by Random House, featured a motif placed near the bar code with the categories 5+, 7+, 9+, 11+ and 13+/teen.
The Publishers Association’s Children’s Book Group claimed that 86% of book buyers approved of the proposed age guidance, while 40% said they would probably buy more books with the plan.

As of July 3, publishers are divided, as Bloomsbury (the Harry Potter publishers), Walker Books, and other major publishers are opposed to age banding, while Random House, Scholastic, and Egmont continue to support it.
Scholastic agreed to dispense with age banding on Pullman’s books, but as Pullman found that not all authors had that advantage, he “signed this petition because I believe passionately in what it says. It is an act of solidarity not only with other authors, but with booksellers and librarians.”
The authors’ campaign placed a full page ad in Britain’s book trade premier publication The Bookseller, where Philip Pullman and over 80 others publicly disassociated themselves from age banding.
J. K. Rowling, Jacqueline Wilson, Alexander McCall Smith, Neil Gaiman, Quentin Blake, Beverley Naidoo, Eva Ibbotson, Iain Banks, Diana Wynne Jones, Lynne Reid Banks, and Anthony Horowitz all joined the anti-age banding campaign.
If you would like to add your name to a list of over 3500 readers, librarians, teachers, writers, and others, send an email to signup@notoagebanding.org. See the contact page of the No to Age Banding site for more details.
Philip Pullman’s statement against the age guidance concluded, “writers take great care not to limit their readership unnecessarily. To tell a story as well and inclusively as possible, and then find someone at the door turning readers away, is contrary to everything we value about books, and reading, and literature itself.”

An update from Terry Pratchett

4 August 2008 2 Comments www.PJSMPrints.com has another update from Terry Pratchett. Here it is in full:
Folks,
To those that want to know, it would be true to say that my life right now is occasional short periods of writing interspersed and interrupted with requests for interviews. As my UK readers will know, merely catching a variant of Alzheimer’s has propelled me onto more prestigious chat show sofas than I have ever seen in 25 years of quietly writing the Discworld series.
My general health is good. The most recent test by my specialist indicates, in effect, that I am no worse now, and possibly slightly better than I was at the back end of November. I have no idea when Unseen Academicals will be finished, simply because of the amount of media interest that continues to be generated by recent developments in the treatment of AD. Frankly, and with the agreement of my publishers, I feel that this is something that I should give priority to.
In a week’s time we are flying to the States to talk to a number of specialists in AD research and, incidentally, go out with the LAPD officers who are tasked with – and I am not kidding – locating and bringing home those elderly joggers with memory difficulties who have jogged five miles and can’t remember where they live. I thought this was an urban myth, but apparently it is true. We will, obviously, be back in time for UK convention, which I would not miss for root canal surgery.
The bad news is that it looks as if, for various reasons, Going Postal The Movie will be delayed and shooting will not begin until the start of next year. However, the guys from Mob turned up this morning and filmed my sequence for the Colour of Magic DVD which will be released in October.

The Discworld Graphic Novels re-released

3 August 2008 Icon 1 Comment In honor of the 25th anniversary of the publishing of The Colour Of Magic, The Discworld Graphic Novels: The Colour Of Magic And The Light Fantastic is being re-released (for the first time in hardcover) in both the U.S. and the U.K.
The synopsis:
Imagine a flat world, sitting on the backs of four elephants who hurtle through space balanced on a giant turtle. The Discworld is a place (and a time) parallel to our own—but also very different. That is the setting for Terry Pratchett’s phenomenally successful Discworld series, which now celebrates its twenty-fifth anniversary.
The Discworld Graphic Novels presents the very first two volumes of this much-loved series in graphic novel form. First published fifteen years ago, these fully illustrated versions are now issued for the first time in hardback. Introduced here are the bizarre misadventures of Twoflower, the Discworld’s first ever tourist, and possibly—portentously—its last, and his guide Rincewind, the spectacularly inept wizard. Not to mention the Luggage, which has a mind of its own.
The U.S. edition and the U.K. edition are both available on Amazon.

Terry Pratchett the most “evergreen” author

1 August 2008 Icon 2 Comments The British book trade’s premier publication, The Bookseller, released today for the first time a list of “evergreen” titles–titles that have never fallen out of the top 5,000 bestseller chart since 1995. The list consists of only twelve (out of more than 1.8 million) books, three of which belong to the Discworld series.
The Colour Of Magic, The Light Fantastic, and Mort all received the honor. No author besides Terry Pratchett has more than one book on the list, earning him the title “‘evergreen’ king.”
Birdsong, by Sebastian Faulks, topped the list. The other books on the list were Complete Cookery Course, by Delia Smith; The Celestine Prophecy, by James Redfield; A Long Walk To Freedom, by Nelson Mandela; and the favorites of The Hobbit, A Brief History Of Time, The Very Hungry Caterpillar, and We’re Going On A Bear Hunt.

The Big God Brouhaha

30 July 2008 Icon 1 Comment As you may or may not know, in the past few months an interview with Terry Pratchett kicked off media speculation that the famously-atheist author had got religion, a misconception he then rebutted in an essay for The Mail On Sunday, which paired the essay with a misleading headline.
Got it? Well, if you didn’t, here’s the story, slowly, with the details:
Brian Appleyard from The Sunday Times interviewed Terry Pratchett in an article titled “Terry Pratchett, Lord of Discworld, fights to save his powers.” It starts out innocuously enough, with light chat about yellow mustaches.
Do I,” says Terry Pratchett suddenly, “have a small yellow moustache at the moment?” He does. His wife Lyn has just given him a turmeric drink.
“There is some evidence from America that it has some effect on Alzheimer’s, slows it down, but anyway I like it. She had me on that from the word go.”
The article discusses the effect Alzheimer’s has had on Pratchett’s writing and daily life.
Aricept and/or turmeric seems to be working for him. His condition has improved since December. In the car, he no longer has to keep stabbing away with the seatbelt; he can fasten it in one. Dressing, he’s no longer baffled by his clothes; he just puts them on.
And it mentions the 25th anniversary of the Discworld series this year, as well as the spates Pratchett has had with other popular authors over the years.
… when I bring up Rowling he sits there comically tight-lipped. I get round this by talking about the novelist Margaret Atwood, who displayed similar genre snottiness when she said that Pratchett didn’t write sci-fi but “speculative fiction”.
“Oh good! Right!” he roars, “Well, I’m writing advanced folklore, perhaps – alternative folklore!” He slips into a prissy Atwood persona – “I’m just speculating about the future. It’s got robots in it, but it’s not science fiction.”
Only near the end does the article kick off the controversy, saying “Pratchett may have found God.”
“I’m certainly not a man of faith, but as I was rushing down the stairs one day . . . it was very strange. And I say this reluctantly, because I am trying to deal with this situation in as hardheaded a way as I can. I suddenly knew that everything was okay, that what I was doing was right and I didn’t know why.” …
It was his first such experience. Did it make him rethink his lack of faith?
“Faith in what? If I get pushed in this corner, I believe in the same God that Einstein did. Einstein was a clever bloke . . . And it is just possible that once you have got past all the gods that we have created with big beards and many human traits, just beyond all that on the other side of physics, there just may be the ordered structure from which everything flows.
“That is both a kind of philosophy and totally useless - it doesn’t take you anywhere. But it fills a hole.”
Other news mediums immediately leaped at this “news.” Here’s a sample of what journalists had to say:
[Terry Pratchett] said an unexplained experience had caused him to reconsider his beliefs. (from Telegraph.co.uk)
TERRY PRATCHETT, the fantasy writer suffering from Alzheimer’s disease, has suggested he may have found God after years of atheism. (from TimesOnline.co.uk)
In response to this unwarranted speculation, Pratchett obliged The Mail On Sunday with an essay about his faith, or lack thereof. He made clear that he is still an atheist, saying “There is a rumour going around that I have found God. I think this is unlikely because I have enough difficulty finding my keys, and there is empirical evidence that they exist.” The entire essay is well worth a read (although a very slight spoiler warning is appropriate). Terry Pratchett ends:
It’s that moment, that brief epiphany when the universe opens up and shows us something, and in that instant we get just a sense of an order greater than Heaven and, as yet at least, beyond the grasp of Stephen Hawking. It doesn’t require worship, but, I think, rewards intelligence, observation and enquiring minds.
I don’t think I’ve found God, but I may have seen where gods come from.

Colour Of Magic DVD to be released October 2008 in U.K.

29 July 2008 9 Comments Despite rumors that the The Colour Of Magic DVD would not be released, PJSM Prints has confirmed that the DVD will be released this October in the U.K. by Twentieth Century Fox. There is no information available about DVD extras, though entertaining “Tourist Guides” and other video extras can be found on Sky One’s official site.
The Colour Of Magic adaptation, starring David Jason as Rincewind and Sean Astin as Twoflower, aired as a two-part miniseries on Sky One this Easter, and is based on events from the first two books in the Discworld series. Terry Pratchett also appears in a cameo part.
There is no information pertaining to a U.S. airing of the film.

Terry Pratchett on On The Ropes on BBC

22 May 2008 (15:01) Icon Comment! BBC4’s radio program On The Ropes interviewed Terry Pratchett May 20 with the tagline “he [Terry Pratchett] has everything, except his health.” The interviewer, John Humphrys, asks Terry Pratchett about his adolescent dreams of being a world-famous author (nonexistent), his choice to become a journalist (he was no good at anything else), the origins of The Carpet People, and the “upward escalator” toward writing success. Terry Pratchett recounts the story of the man who was too radioactive to walk out of the nuclear plant, the story of his job interview at the local newspaper, and so on. Terry Pratchett even talks about J. K. Rowling’s success and his objection to the Muggles in the Harry Potter series. The half-hour program concludes with a discussion of Alzheimer’s and its effect on Terry Pratchett’s life.

Making Money: Locus Awards finalist

19 May 2008 (11:35) Icon Comment! Discworld’s latest entry, Making Money, has made it to the the Locus Awards finalist list in the fantasy novel category. Making Money attained the honor by ranking in the top five in Locus Magazine’s yearly poll and survey, and shares the honor with Endless Things, by John Crowley; Pirate Freedom, by Gene Wolfe; Territory, by Emma Bull; and Ysabel, by Guy Gavriel Kay. The winner will be announced June 21, in Seattle, at the Locus Awards Ceremony during the Science Fiction Hall Of Fame Awards Weekend.
Finalists in other categories include The Yiddish Policemen’s Union, by Michael Chabon; Powers, by Ursula K. Le Guin; Un Lun Dun, by China Mieville; After The Siege, by Cory Doctorow; Memorare Gene Wolfe; The Witch’s Headstone, by Neil Gaiman; Overclocked, by Cory Doctorow; The Year’s Best Fantasy & Horror 2007: Twentieth Annual Collection, by Ellen Datlow, Kelly Link, and Gavin J. Grant, ed. ; and Brave New Words: The Oxford Dictonary Of Science Fiction, by Jeff Prucher, ed.

Terry Pratchett opens display at Bath’s Postal Museum

18 May 2008 (17:49) Icon Comment! ThisIsBath.co.uk reports that Terry Pratchett opened a new exhibition, which runs till September, at Bath’s Postal Museum on Northgate Street. The exhibition celebrates Victorian innovations like the penny post and post boxes. To quote Terry Pratchett:

This has been a wonderful exhibition and I am pleased to be here to look around.
The Victorian period was such a great age of inventions and they were all inventions which we could get our heads around - they were easy to understand unlike today’s inventions.

Terry Pratchett used the Postal Museum while researching for Going Postal.
 
 
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18 June 2008 @ 09:52 am
This is just to give an update to those of you who are waiting for a news update:

We're having problems with our site right now, which is normally working well at www.FromRimToHub.com, so we haven't been able to update this blog with news summaries for a while. Apologies, and hopefully we'll be up and running within a week!
 
 
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Frequently updated news can be found at our base site, www.FromRimToHub.com.

Warning: Do not buy Discworld novels from Hill House, Publishers until further notice

1 May 2008 (19:53) 5 Comments

Hill House’s proposed facsimile editions of the first twelve Discworld novels, advertised since at least 2005, will probably not be published, according to Terry Pratchett’s agent Colin Smythe.

The new editions were supposed to reproduce the early Discworld novels “in exact facsimile editions,” with the use of identical binding, paper, type, and jacket art as the originals. The books were due to be published about every four months and since 2005 only The Colour Of Magic and The Light Fantastic have been published.

Terry Pratchett’s literary agent Colin Smythe responded to questions with “as far as I’m aware, the owner of Hill House, Publishers Peter Schneider has been ill and as it’s a one man operation I don’t believe that he’s going to publish any more of the facsimiles. It’s a considerable disappointment.”

Discworld fans should be warned that the series of facsimiles is still being advertised on the site, with no mention of these concerns.

“I … paid the company $210 for the first six titles–[which] sounded like a good deal,” said one fan, whose complaint brought the situation to light. “As of [April 2008] only two books have been published. At $105 per book this doesn’t sound like as good a deal.”

He had emailed Hill House repeatedly, with no response and no refund.

Happy Birthday, Terry Pratchett

28 April 2008 (16:34) 2 Comments

Many birthday wishes to Terry Pratchett, who turns sixty today, April 28.

BBC birthday celebrations for Terry Pratchett

27 April 2008 (14:06) Comment!

BBC 7 celebrates Terry Pratchett’s sixtieth birthday (this Monday) with a mini series of Terry Pratchett interviews, radio adaptations of the Discworld novels, and more. A summary of what’s still available:
  • Book Club: Terry Pratchett talks to James Naughtie about Mort and the Discworld series. Airs May 2 at 6:30 pm. and 12:30 a.m.
  • Truckers: The first novel in Terry Pratchett’s trilogy about nomes, read by Philip Pickard. Airs May 5 to May 8 from 7 a.m. to 8 a.m. on Big Toe Books.
All programs, including the dramatization of Small Gods that aired yesterday, should be available on BBC’s Listen Again feature for about a week after airing.

From Terry Pratchett: Alzheimer’s, documentary, book, and film news.

19 April 2008 (14:13) Comment!

Over at the Discworld illustrator’s website, Terry Pratchett has kindly updated his fans with information about everything: the BBC documentary (”broadcast next year”), dealing with Alzheimer’s (”I am now firmly ensconced with a specialist”), Nation (”line-edited”), and the coming TV adaptation of Going Postal. The full text of the letter follows:
My office is now effectively at a standstill. In fact, my office is probably moving slightly backwards. It has not helped that a five story rack of filed mail collapsed under the weight recently, thus shuffling several thousand documents into new and interesting combinations. Right now it is a good day if we can answer just those emails that turn up on that day. Most days are nothing like good days. Can we please say this:

I very much appreciate all the letters, emails and cards that have come in, many of them recounting personal experiences and quite a few passing on “survival kits”. There does seem to be some people out there who have managed at least to slow AD, although I have to say that it does appear by taking various supplements, not by milligram, but by grams :o)
Nation has now been line-edited, and in theory I was going to have a month or so off, although a large part of that will now be spent reassembling what passes as our post room. In reality there are now more calls on my time than there have ever been, to the point where we are simply having to ignore approaches. I think we must have had more than a dozen approaches from documentary companies alone, and I think we shall now just stop sending out the “You are too late, guys” emails (You may see us around and about being followed by Craig and Charlie, who are making a documentary about me for the BBC which will be broadcast next year.) I never intended that I would be some kind of AD spokesman, but the world seems to be deciding otherwise.

On a brighter note, I am now firmly ensconced with a specialist, testing last week showed that nothing much had moved since the end of November, except that in situations where I must parallel process I find that serial processing is about as much as I can achieve :o)

There are a number of things planned for the rest of the year, and they include cracking on with Unseen Academicals and also, with any luck, playing a rather larger role in the making of Going Postal.

Terry Pratchett/Alzheimer’s documentary by IWC Media and the BBC

18 April 2008 (15:18) Comment!

Scotland’s largest independent television production company, IWC Media, has teamed up with Terry Pratchett and the BBC to make a new documentary series about Terry Pratchett and his diagnosis of early onset Alzheimer’s. Craig Hunter will be the producer for the documentary, and Charlie Russell will direct. Terry Pratchett has said on his illustrator’s website that he “must have had more than a dozen approaches from documentary companies alone, and I think we shall now just stop sending out the “You are too late, guys” emails (You may see us around and about being followed by Craig and Charlie, who are making a documentary about me for the BBC which will be broadcast next year.) I never intended that I would be some kind of AD spokesman, but the world seems to be deciding otherwise.”

The Illustrated Wee Free Men, coming this October

17 April 2008 (18:47) Comment!
The Illustrated Wee Free Men book cover
An illustrated version of the first novel in the Tiffany Aching children’s series, Wee Free Men, is now available for pre-order on Amazon.co.uk. (There is also a page for this illustrated version of the novel on the American version of the site, although pre-ordering is not yet available there.) This new edition is to be titled The Illustrated Wee Free Men, and according to Amazon.co.uk, will number 256 pages. To quote the synopsis:
‘They can tak’ oour lives but they cannae tak’ oour trousers!’ When the Queen of Fairyland steals away Tiffany Aching’s young brother, Tiffany has to do something. Helped by the Nac Mac Feegle–the thievin’, fightin’, stealin’ pictsies known as the Wee Free Men–she steps through into another world…. This is a terrific adventure set on the Discworld, filled with Terry Pratchett’s inimitable wit, style and invention–and this new gift edition includes extra new material to give real added value for fans.
The U.K. publishing date is set for October 6, 2008, while the American publishing date is set for October 28.

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Nation: cover art, synopsis, September release date?

13 April 2008 (14:07) Comment!

Terry Pratchett’s newest novel, Nation, is now available for pre-order on Amazon.co.uk. (There is also a Nation page on the American version of the site, although pre-ordering is not yet available there.) According to Amazon.co.uk, the hardcover is 300 pages long, and the publishing date is approximately September 11, 2008. (The American Amazon states a publishing date of September 9.) Interestingly, the (probably non-Discworld) book is categorized as a children’s book. To quote the synopsis:

Finding himself alone on a desert island when everything and everyone he knows and loved has been washed away in a huge storm, Mau is the last surviving member of his nation. He’s also completely alone–or so he thinks until he finds the ghost girl. She has no toes, wears strange lacy trousers like the grandfather bird and gives him a stick which can make fire. Daphne, sole survivor of the wreck of the Sweet Judy, almost immediately regrets trying to shoot the native boy. Thank goodness the powder was wet and the gun only produced a spark. She’s certain her father, distant cousin of the Royal family, will come and rescue her but it seems, for now, all she has for company is the boy and the foul-mouthed ship’s parrot. As it happens, they are not alone for long. Other survivors start to arrive to take refuge on the island they all call the Nation and then raiders accompanied by murderous mutineers from the Sweet Judy. Together, Mau and Daphne discover some remarkable things–including how to milk a pig and why spitting in beer is a good thing–and start to forge a new Nation. As can be expected from Terry Pratchett, the master story-teller, this new children’s novel is both witty and wise, encompassing themes of death and nationhood, while being extremely funny. Mau’s ancestors have something to teach us all. Mau just wishes they would shut up about it and let him get on with saving everyone’s lives!

Here’s to happy reading about Mau, Daphne, and the mutineers in September!

The Folklore Of Discworld, by Jacqueline Simpson and Terry Pratchett

12 April 2008 (13:56) Comment!

The Folklore Of Discworld, a book we’ve heard Terry Pratchett speak about on his Making Money tours last year, is now available for pre-order on Amazon.co.uk. (There is also a Folklore Of Discworld page on the American version of the site, although pre-ordering is not yet available there.) To quote the synopsis:

Most of us grow up having always known to touch wood or cross our fingers, and what happens when a princess kisses a frog or a boy pulls a sword from a stone, yet sadly, some of these things are now beginning to be forgotten. Legends, myths, fairytales: our world is made up of the stories we told ourselves about where we came from and how we got there. It is the same on Discworld, except that beings that on Earth are creatures of the imagination, like vampires, trolls, witches and, possibly, gods, are real, alive and in some cases kicking on the Disc. In “The Folklore of Discworld”, Terry Pratchett teams up with leading British folklorist Jacqueline Simpson to give an irreverent yet illuminating look at the living myths and folklore that are reflected, celebrated and affectionately libelled in the uniquely imaginative universe of Discworld.

TerryPratchett.co.uk on-line

12 April 2008 (13:33) Comment!

U.K. Discworld publishers Transworld have put up an official Terry Pratchett site at TerryPratchett.co.uk. The full site is still coming soon, but the site already has a “featured books” section, a competition (rules here and registration here), and promises “a great destination site for all fans.” Future updates are expected to include a forum, exclusive news, downloads, and games.

TV Zone magazine features Tim Curry in The Colour Of Magic

11 April 2008 (18:13) Comment!

TV Zone’s 226th issue features Tim Curry, who acted Trymon in the recent Discworld TV adaptation, The Colour Of Magic. The excerpt available on-line includes Curry marveling at the technology available to the producers of The Colour Of Magic. To quote Tim Curry in the article:

The technology has taken such huge leaps. It’s so interesting that even in television, the director can now say ‘Oh, don’t worry about that, we’ll paint it out’, or, ‘This section is a CGI’. In Legend there was nothing like that. They weren’t even puppets…. I’ve seen images of [the creatures in The Colour Of Magic]. I saw the two dragons today that looked fantastic.”

And then there’s the all-important question (to fans at least): Was he a fan of the Discworld series? But alas:

I wasn’t aware of Terry Pratchett until I was sent this script, although I’m told that he sells very well in America… I hadn’t been aware of him before.

Motion in U.K. Parliament: “Terry Pratchett and Alzheimer’s Research Funding”

9 April 2008 (20:17) 1 Comment

The Match It For Pratchett website has received a message from Andrew Scheuber at the Alzheimer’s Research Trust about a motion in Parliament “to increase funding and promote further research” for the disease. The letter reads, in part:

If you’re a UK citizen, please write a letter to your MP urging him or her to sign EDM no. 1337 http://edmi.parliament.uk/EDMi/EDMDetails.aspx?EDMID=35577&SESSION=891

The House of Commons motion is called TERRY PRATCHETT AND ALZHEIMER’S RESEARCH FUNDING and it reads:

That this House applauds Terry Pratchett, who is donating $1 million to the Alzheimer’s Research Trust; notes that there are 700,000 people with dementia in the UK, a number forecast to double within a generation; notes that for every person with Alzheimer’s, £11 is spent each year on UK research compared with £289 for each cancer patient; supports the work of the UK’s leading scientists, who recently met at the Alzheimer’s Research Trust’s Network Conference in Bristol, in researching better treatments and possible cures for dementia; welcomes the campaign by Terry Pratchett and the Alzheimer’s Research Trust to increase funding and promote further research into the diagnosis, treatment and a possible cure for Alzheimer’s and other forms of dementia.

Your MP’s address is: The House of Commons, Westminster, London, SW1A 0AA.

If you don’t know who your MP is, go to www.theyworkforyou.com and type in your postcode.

Writing a real letter tends to be most effective, but if you’d prefer to do things electronically go to www.writetothem.com

Use your own words; it doesn’t have to be long. Just a message asking the MP to sign EDM 1337 would suffice. If you want ideas on what else you could write, check out http://www.alzheimers-research.org.uk/info/statistics/ or see what Terry Pratchett has to say about dementia research funding http://www.alzheimers-research.org.uk/news/article.php?type=News&id=205

A few days after sending your letter, if you have a spare few minutes, call the Parliamentary switchboard on 020 7219 3000 and ask for your MP’s office. Check that your letter has been received, ask if the MP will sign EDM 1337, and explain why you’re concerned about the underfunding of dementia research. Please be extremely polite to the researcher or secretary; they are overworked, underpaid and dedicated to helping constitutents.

Match It For Pratchett advertising badges to be removed

8 April 2008 (18:08) Comment!

Because of concern expressed by Terry Pratchett and his agent, Colin Smythe, the badges for the Match It For Pratchett campaign which use Discworld characters and settings should be removed from blogs. The Match It For Pratchett website has addressed the issue, saying:

They’re lovely badges and they were made for a good cause, but Terry Pratchett has no wish for his Discworld characters to be used for advertising of any kind.

They will be dropped from this website ASAP, of course. The idea of the Match It For Pratchett campaign is to raise money for Alzheimer’s research in honour of Terry, not to create problems for him or to use his intellectual property in ways that he doesn’t want.

Terry Pratchett on J. K. Rowling

2 April 2008 (20:42) 2 Comments

Terry Pratchett, as fantasy writer extraordinaire before J. K. Rowling came along and Stole His Thunder, Causing Him To Become Intensely Jealous And Bitter (according to the newspapers, anyway), has been asked once more about his attitude towards J. K. Rowling. Of course, most journalists can’t resist over-dramatizing a story (thus the heading on this article: “Broomsticks at dawn as Pratchett curses JK.” I mean, really.), but here’s the quotage anyway:

At the screening of the TV adaptation of Pratchett’s mass-translated novel The Colour of Magic, I asked if he was a fan of [J. K. Rowling].

“Not particularly,” he said bluntly. “I read the first one [Harry Potter], that was fine, but now I read other things. You don’t have to be a fan, it’s not compulsory.”

The article also mentions Terry Pratchett’s take on the Rowling’s recent lawsuit against RDR Books, who intended to publish a print version of the Harry Potter Lexicon. To quote Terry Pratchett:

In fantasy writing, accusations of copying are very difficult to make. You know who invented wizards? Who invented Goblins? If we were going to start paying royalties for nicking one another’s ideas, we’d have all given our life savings to the Tolkien family a long time ago.

Not particularly surprising, or unreasonable. And very funny. I don’t see any cursing, do you?

Colour Of Magic premiere Q&A transcript

1 April 2008 (21:00) Comment!

DenOfGeek.com, in addition to the review we told you about earlier, has made available a complete transcript of the Q&A session that followed the screening March 3. Director Vadim Jean, Sir David Jason (Rincewind), Sean Astin (Twoflower), and of course Terry Pratchett participated in the session. Some selections:

Terry Pratchett: … some screens actually glittered at home but now, well, some screens didn’t glitter so much – I’ll put it that way.
Vadim Jean: It’s definitely the projector! In glorious high definition – which you’re all going to go out and buy just to see this, it’s, well, stunning.
Terry Pratchett: Actually, for once, he’s not lying! I’ve seen it on the big TV screens and there was masses of colour.
Vadim Jean:We’re just stretching the technology to the limit, throwing it 150 feet.

————

Sean Astin: Richard, the prop guy who worked it from inside – there actually was someone inside working it – after 45 minutes you’d forget someone was inside there. You’d lift the lid and he’d be just about dead, make-up running, sweating and everything, and they’d like ‘we’re gonna go for another one, jump over the hill again?’ and he’d say ‘no problem! No problem!’

————

David Jason: I think this is accessible to everyone. The Rambo-lovers as well as mums and dads – we’ve got our little ones here and they’ve been loving it, and Sean’s little ones too. I think that given a fair go, and reasonable publicity, that this will attract a lovely family audience, and that’s what we made it for.

Match It For Pratchett: “Not official”

31 March 2008 (17:37) Comment!

Terry Pratchett issued a statement on The Cunning Artificer’s about the Match It For Pratchett campaign. The campaign is organized by fans to match Pratchett’s recent half-a-million-pound donation to the Alzheimer’s Research Trust in the U.K. To quote Pratchett’s post:

As far as we are concerned this is not official, and if we don’t think its official, it aint. I hate to appear to be in any way negative about what appears to be very good intentions, but I could wish that the gentleman concerned had got in touch with us first before going ahead.

I have to say there are certain things that worry me about this project, not because they are in any way fraudulent, but raising and distributing money for charity can involve rather more problems than seem apparent at the start – especially in the loveable volatile world we know as fandom.

Most of the £13,000 raised since last Thursday has been sent to the Alzheimer’s Research Trust (https://www.committedgiving.uk.net/art/public/donor.aspx?id=cc) directly, which at least has the benefit of being straight forward.

Luggage auction ends at £3,667.42

30 March 2008 (11:31) 1 Comment

The charity auction for the one-off replica of the Luggage used in the Colour Of Magic ended on Monday March 24, with a bid of £3,667.42. All £3,667.42 of that goes to the Alzheimer’s Research Trust in the U.K. The Luggage was filled with the complete set of Discworld books, signed by Terry Pratchett, and the new film tie-in edition of The Colour Of Magic, signed by some of the actors in the movie.

Colour Of Magic premiere report; Terry Pratchett, Sean Astin, and David Jason on video

27 March 2008 (0:51) 1 Comment

BBC has a video report on the premiere of The Colour Of Magic, which includes interviews with Terry Pratchett, Sean Astin, and David Jason. Terry Pratchett says seeing the film is “like wandering around on the inside of my own head,” while Sean Astin and David Jason bring the on-screen double-act into real life, bantering about David Jason’s daughter’s impressions on the film as well as other things.

The premiere took place March 3, and the Colour Of Magic adaptation aired for the first time last Sunday and Monday in the U.K.

Terry Pratchett on Alzheimer’s: “I’ve never felt more alive.”

27 March 2008 (0:04) Comment!

In the wake of Terry Pratchett’s 500,000 pound donation to Alzheimer’s research, BBC has posted a video interview with Terry Pratchett. In the fairly long (fifteen minutes long) interview, Terry Pratchett is asked about his life since the diagnosis, what his plans are for writing in the future (”I’ve started the next book.”), his access to medicine, what he feels about Alzheimer’s underfunding compared to cancer, and a whole myriad of other interesting topics.

Also made available by the BBC website: Terry Pratchett’s donation speech, including the preliminary banter about the evolutionary reasons for Alzheimer’s.

Terry Pratchett audio interview on Arthur C. Clarke

26 March 2008 (23:46) Comment!

Arthur C. Clarke died at age 90 recently, and accordingly, BBC interviewed Terry Pratchett on Clarke’s contribution to the science fiction/fantasy genre. The audio of the interview can be found on the BBC website. In the two-and-a-half minute clip, Terry Pratchett speaks about the effect of Clarke’s Space Odyssey, his astonishingly accurate predictions, and how he “put some science into science fiction.”

The Colour Of Magic finishes airing; early reviews good

25 March 2008 (8:10) Comment!

As you all know, The Colour Of Magic, the TV adaptation of the first two books in the Discworld series, finished airing for the first time March 24 in the U.K. The reaction fans so far has been excellent, and the early reviews so far have been similarly good. To quote a TimesOnline.co.uk article on The Colour Of Magic:

The two-parter was better than Sky’s previous Discworld adaptation, the story more clearly told (I could understand it) and David Jason happier as the hopeless wizard Rincewind than as Albert in The Hogfather [sic]. It also benefited from an excellent villain in Tim Curry. It looked good, in an over-glossy, Hallmark Productions kind of way …

Another article, from The Scotsman, said, “this was a good-looking production that proper fans probably appreciated.” However, criticisms were also evident in both articles:

Every now and again the budget (tight, it was implied, by the accompanying “Making of” documentary) looked stretched. If it could show characters falling off the edge of the world, make a trunk walk and blow up the Broken Drum Inn, why is it impossible for the skeleton Death to open its mouth when it speaks?

And:

The opening instalment, based on Pratchett’s first and possibly worst Discworld book, was far too long, dragging out its attempts at satire with leaden direction and script.

The Guardian.co.uk some preliminary viewing figures for the adaptation:

  • The second part concluded with almost 1 million viewers last night, with an average of 967,000 viewers and a multichannel share of 4.7%. The viewer numbers peaked at 1.1 million viewers at 7:15.
  • The first part (which aired Sunday March 23) attracted 1.5 million viewers and an 8% multichannel share.

Compare these numbers to Hogfather’s: 2.4 million for the first part (a record-breaking number) and 1.5 million for the second.

Update: Another highly enthusiastic review.

Reminder: The Colour Of Magic aired 6 p.m. on Sky One tonight

23 March 2008 (17:57) Comment!

The headline says it all, really. Viewers in the U.K. had the opportunity to see the first part of the much-awaited Colour Of Magic adaptation tonight at 6 p.m. Part two airs tomorrow, also at 6 p.m. Don’t forget to check out the official site, where galleries and videos can help you pass the time until tomorrow! FromRimToHub.com’s Colour Of Magic section will also help pass the time.

David Jason, Sean Astin, Tim Curry, Terry Prachett on Colour Of Magic

22 March 2008 (14:41) Comment!

An extensive article from TimesOnline.co.uk includes quotes from David Jason, Sean Astin, Tim Curry, and Terry Pratchett about the coming Colour Of Magic two part adaptation, which will be broadcast this Sunday and Monday at 6 p.m. To quote Sean Astin in the article:

It’s a little weird…. Some guy has a brain fart and I’m wearing big furry feet for two years. Another guy has an acid tablet and I’m in a pond in the back of Pinewood…. Terry obviously loves Tolkien and fantasy but he also loves to … take the piss out of it.

Tim Curry, with some less colorful language, also speaks about the Discworld series:

Terry’s big on satire and drawing conclusions in his worlds that you can take into this one…. I don’t think class has passed him by, or the advancements of technology. Trymon is such a wonderfully double-dealing slimeball–he’d be totally at home in Brussels. I’ve had a lot of extremely uncomfortable pointy shoes to wear, and lots of great hats.

And finally, Terry Pratchett himself also speaks:

Hogfather was more serious; The Colour of Magic is about humour…. It’s a buddy movie except that one of the buddies [Rincewind] doesn’t want to be a buddy. It’s a road movie although roads are probably the last thing they manage to travel on most of the time.

[On signing over the rights to The Colour Of Magic and The Light Fantastic] I tried to conceal the fact that I really wanted them to do it but really would like to be paid a lot of money…. The nice thing is that The Colour of Magic really had no plot. It was a series of episodes and we could, like a smorgasbord, pick what we wanted. So it wasn’t quite the slaughter job that I thought it would have to be.

Terry Pratchett also addressed the concerns of many fans on the casting of David Jason as Rincewind, since many consider Rincewind to be younger and skinnier:

It was mainly the book cover illustrations that did that…. I’m very good at not describing characters. David Jason has got three amazingly good attributes. Firstly, he is an excellent actor. Secondly, he’s Sir David Jason, and that name counts for something. And thirdly he’s a Discworld fan and about 15 years ago he declared that he wanted to play Rincewind. I thought, ‘Wonderful!’

The article also has a set-report aspect to it, as it describes the filming of the scene where Rincewind is close to being swept over the edge of the Discworld. To quote the article:

“I don’t want to leave this world!” gurgles David Jason. Britain’s Most Popular Actor [sic] is clinging to a log in the middle of a foaming torrent of water, which swirls through his red robes and greying beard and plasters his hair across his face. “DON’T MIND ME - I’VE GOT A BOOK TO READ,” deadpans a skeletal figure in a deckchair on a nearby rocky outcrop. Slowly, Jason’s grip relaxes on the log and he disappears beneath the surface.

“Cut!” barks a voice through a megaphone. A bedraggled Jason re-emerges, and is shepherded by a squad of frogmen to the edge of Pinewood Studios’ 100-square metre water tank, as the huge compressed air generators that were creating the torrent wind down. It’s an overcast August afternoon near the end of the 11-week shoot for The Colour of Magic, Sky One’s multimillion- pound Easter adaptation of the first two books in Terry Pratchett’s supernaturally successful Discworld series…. In this scene [Rincewind] is attempting to avoid being swept over the Discworld’s oceanic rim and into space, which will be represented on the vast blue screen behind him. His travails are observed by the sardonic Death, whose vocal duties have passed from the late Ian Richardson to Christopher Lee, who voiced him in the Pratchett animations Wyrd Sisters and Soul Music.

The article also informs readers that the fight with Tim Curry has been filmed in addition to the upside-down fight in the Wyrmberg.

For continually updated news, check www.FromRimToHub.com.
 
 
pratchett_news
23 March 2008 @ 06:58 pm

Dress up and win an iPod and every Discworld audiobook

20 March 2008 (20:16)  1 Comment

TimesOnline.co.uk is offering a contest to celebrate the 25th anniversary of The Colour Of Magic, the first novel in the Discworld series. To win, send a photograph of “yourself dressed as your favourite Pratchett character” to books@timesonline.co.uk and explain why he or she is your favorite character.  Things to note about the contest:

  • Only residents of the U.K. and Eire aged 16 and over are eligible.
  • Each person is allowed only one entry.
  • Include “Pratchett” in the subject of your entry.
  • The email should include the picture of yourself dressed up, the name of your character, why he or she is your favorite (in less than 50 words), your name, your age, your phone number, and your email address.
  • The photograph must be in jpeg format and less than 10 megabytes.  Dimension specifications: “a minimum pixel width of 450 for landscape photographs or 450 pixels for portrait photos.”
  • The deadline is midday May 19, 2008.

 The full terms and conditions can also be found on the site.

Colour Of Magic airs 6 p.m. March 23 and 24; more Colour Of Magic trailers

19 March 2008 (21:19)  2 Comments

SkyOne has finally announced the air date in the U.K. for The Colour Of Magic: 6 p.m. March 23 and March 24, on SkyOne and SkyOne HD. In addition, two new trailers have been posted to YouTube.

Trailer 2, length 32 seconds:

Narrator: From the dawn of time, they have always been there: the eight great spells. Now, one of them is missing.
Trymon: Well, that’s rather badly organized.
Narrator: And only one wizard–
Rincewind: I never really completed my training.
Narrator: –can bring it home. David Jason, Sean Astin, and Tim Curry take you to the very edge of the Discworld. Terry Pratchett’s The Colour Of Magic. This Easter. SkyOne and SkyOne HD.

Trailer 3, Theatrical, length 93 seconds:

Narrator: In a distant and secondhand set of dimensions, from the very dawn of time, they have always been there: the eight great spells. Now, one of them is missing. One of the eight spells is missing.
Trymon: Well, that’s rather badly organized.
Narrator: And there is only one wizard–
Rincewind: I’m the worst wizard this side of the Circle Sea!
Narrator: –who can bring it home. From the makers of Hogfather. SkyOne presents a pigment of your imagination.
Twoflower: All my life I’ve wanted to see dragons.
Rincewind: Don’t be ridiculous. Dragons don’t exist.
Rincewind: I won’t. (?)
Rincewind: What are you grinning at?
Death: Oh, I’m sorry. I can’t help it.
Rincewind: He says he’s a tourist.
Broadman: What’s that mean?
Twoflower: Smile!
Rincewind: I think it means idiot.
Narrator: David Jason, Sean Astin, and Tim Curry–
Trymon: Fantastic.
Narrator: –take you to the very edge of the Discworld.
Twoflower: And I thought everything was going so well!
Rincewind: Well, you thought wrong.
Narrator: Terry Pratchett’s The Colour Of Magic. This Easter. SkyOne and SkyOne HD.

You can find more videos on YouTube (though all are repeats from what can be found on the site) on Sky’s YouTube channel.

Terry Pratchett tributes science fiction writer Arthur C. Clarke

19 March 2008 (17:23)  Comment!

Arthur C. Clarke’s recent death at the age of 90 recently has prompted tributes from scientists and authors, including Terry Pratcett and Sir Patrick Moore.  To quote a Guardian.co.uk article on the subject

The science fiction author Terry Pratchett praised Clarke as a “great man” who “put some science into science fiction”.

“Most notably, I think he was probably the first science fiction writer to break out of the science fiction ghetto,” Pratchett told the BBC Radio 4 Today programme. “He became a national treasure like Patrick Moore.”

The film version of 2001: A Space Odyssey - in which Sir Arthur was closely involved - was “totally, totally new”, Pratchett said.

“What I particularly recall is Arthur complaining that the reason why the apes never won the Oscar for best make-up was that they were so good the judges thought they really were apes.”

Terry Pratchett has previously said, “There is a tradition in the science fiction and fantasy genre of ‘paying forward.’ At the first convention I attended in my youth was Arthur C. Clarke [and other authors] I thought of as gods. They signed books for me and let me into their conversations, even if they thought of me a bothersome little tit. You can never pay back something like that but you can pay your way forward by making your own contribution.” (AdelaideNow, March 2007)

Terry Pratchett opens Winchester planetarium

19 March 2008 (17:11)  Comment!

Last month we told you that Terry Pratchett would be opening Britain’s largest planetarium at INTECH’s Science Centre in Winchester.  ThisIsWinchester.net reports that Terry Pratchett said at the event, “I thought it was amazing.  My imagination got fired by going to the planetarium when I was a child.  I think it’s quite important to get kids interested in who we are and why we’re here.”

Sir Patrick Moore also attended the event, saying “The young enthusiasts of today are our researchers of tomorrow. The planetarium is a great thing for the area and the country.”

INTECH Director Phil Winfield said, “Terry Pratchett was inspired by astronomy as a young person and that’s exactly what we want to do at INTECH - inspire young people.”

The 176-seat planetarium will be open to the public starting on March 21, 2008.

Sky begins major advertising for The Colour Of Magic

18 March 2008 (21:06)  Comment!

MarketingWeek.co.uk reports that Sky’s multimillion-pound advertising campaign for Terry Pratchett’s The Colour Of Magic is kicking in gear this week, which “includes TV, press, online and outdoor executions as well as the rerelease of Pratchett’s book of the same name, part of the Discworld series.” To quote the article:

Sky is also partnering with online bookseller Amazon, as well as homepage takeovers on MSN, Yahoo! and AOL. Interactive ads will run across sites, such as TVGuide and Yahoo! linking to the sky.com/magic microsite.

National press advertising will run in titles including The Sun, The Guardian, New Statesman and listings sections and TV spots will air across Sky Networks. Sky is also launching a Bluetooth zone at Victoria station, which will give mobile users the opportunity to download video clips, ring and text tones and screen savers.

Sky is also involved in viral and social network promotion for the adaptation.

Terry Pratchett interview from Sky

17 March 2008 (21:17)  Comment!

The Sky News blog posted a video interview of Terry Pratchett recently, in which Terry Pratchett talks about his recent half-a-million-pound donation to the Alzheimer’s Research Trust in the U.K.  In the minute-long video clip, Pratchett calls the organization “somewhat of a Cinderella charity compared to the cancer charities” and explains a little more about his diagnosis. 

 
 
pratchett_news
18 March 2008 @ 05:43 pm

Match It For Pratchett: Donate 1 pound to Alzheimer’s research

16 March 2008 Comment!

Pat Cadigan started an online campaign (dubbed “Match it for Pratchett” by participants) on her blog to get half a million Discworld fans to each donate a pound (that’s about two dollars in U.S. currency) to Alzheimer’s research, thus matching the half-million pounds/a million dollars donation Terry Pratchett made yesterday to the Alzheimer’s Research Trust in the U.K. Cadigan says on her blog, “So whaddaya say, guys? … You can spare that much. Go here and make your donation. Tell them it’s in honour of Terry Pratchett.”

Edit: The Match It For Pratchett site, www.matchitforpratchett.org, has been set up for more information. A Facebook page has also been set up by the originator of the initiative, which includes a letter from the Alzheimer’s Research Trust.

Buy the Luggage, support Alzheimer’s research

15 March 2008 5 Comments

A charity auction on eBay is in process to support the Alzheimer’s Research Trust. Terry Pratchett and the Colour of Magic crew worked together to provide this “unique opportunity” to own the only replica of the Luggage used in producing The Colour of Magic adaptation. To quote the item description:

A unique opportunity to own a one-off replica of the luggage as featured in Sky One’s adaptation of Terry Pratchett’s The Colour of Magic. This quirky ‘suitcase’ is filled with the full library of Discworld novels, plus the production designs used to build the luggage as seen in the film. Both the books and the designs have been signed by Terry Pratchett.

Also included in this money can’t buy piece of memorabilia is a copy of the Discworld 25th anniversary edition of The Colour of Magic which hits book store shelves on the 10th March. This brand spanking new reissue not only features the stars of Sky One’s magical adaptation, Sir David Jason and Sean Astin, on the front cover, but the two actors have also signed the novel.

Fifteen bidders have bid the price up to £2,000.00.  The auction ends on March 24.

More Colour of Magic official site updates: “Tourist Guides” and more!

14 March 2008 Comment!

The official Colour of Magic site from Sky has been updated to include more fun descriptions of the creatures, characters, and places of Discworld. In the Video section, four out of eight “Tourist Guides,” hosted by the Librarian of the Unseen University and a goofy assistant have been uploaded. The videos include glimpses of the Rimfall and Wyrmberg, the dragon-filled, upside-down mountain. You can watch them to see a small clip of Twoflower using his phrase book to speak with a bemused Broadman, an odd interaction between Rincewind and Twoflower, and a particularly creepy speech from Trymon.  Watch the slightly nutty videos to learn about Discworld’s geography, wizards, cuisine, inhabitants, religions, plants, and entertainment.

Four out of seven “Behind the Magic” videos are also on the site, where you can hear Sir David Jason and Sean Astin speak about The Colour of Magic.

You can visit the official Colour of Magic site for wallpapers, interviews, trailer, production notes, and more goodies.

Terry Pratchett donates $1 million to Alzheimer’s research

13 March 2008  2 Comments

Many news sources are reporting today that Terry Pratchett has donated $1 million to the Alzheimer’s Research Trust, deploring the lack of funding for research and support for those affected by the disease. Funding per cancer patient is £289, compared to the £11 spent per Alzheimer’s research. (That’s more than 25 times more per patient.)

Chief Executive of the Alzheimer’s Research Trust Rebecca Wood said, “Terry’s generous donation will fund promising UK research which hopes to find ways to slow down or halt the disease. The reality is that [now] we are scraping for every penny and have to turn down two out of every three research projects.”

“There is a kind of heroic glamour about the battle against cancer. We use the language ‘the battlefield,’ or there is a battle, whereas frankly with Alzheimer’s it is a lot of skirmishing … I don’t think any cure is going to be discovered in my lifetime… but I think there might be a regime, some combination of lifestyle and drugs which helps people live with Alzheimer’s,” the AFP quotes Terry Pratchett as saying.

The TimesOnline reports that Terry Pratchett described Alzheimer’s as “[stripping] away your living self a bit at a time” and “a nasty disease, surrounded by shadows and small, largely unseen tragedies.”

“Part of me lives in a world of new age remedies and science, and some of the science is a little like voodoo, but science was never an exact science, and personally I’d eat the arse out of a dead mole if it offered a fighting chance.”

“There’s nearly as many of us as there are cancer sufferers, and it looks as if the number of people with the disease will double within a generation … It’s a shock and a shame to find out that money for [Alzheimer’s] research is 3 per cent of that which goes to find cancer cures. Perhaps that is why, for example, I know three people who have successfully survived brain tumours but no one who has beaten Alzheimer’s.”

“I’d like a chance to die like my father did – of cancer, at 86 . . . Before he went to spend his last two weeks in a hospice he was bustling around the house, fixing things. He talked to us right up to the last few days, knowing who we were and who he was.”

“I want to go on writing. You can’t write books when you are dead, unless your name is L. Ron Hubbard.”

The press release can be seen on PJSMprints.com, and you can read Terry Pratchett’s full speech at the Alzheimer’s Research Trust conference in Watershed, Bristol this morning, Thursday, March 13th.

 
 
pratchett_news
07 March 2008 @ 09:12 am

The Colour of Magic official site continues to expand. It now includes a gallery, where fans can browse through a film gallery (The Film >> Film Gallery), on set stills (Behind the Scenes >> On Set Stills and Gallery >> On Set Stills), and concept art (Behind the Scenes >> Concept Art and Gallery >> Concept Art).  You can see Bethan (looking somewhat upset) being led toward the sacrificial altar, Cohen the Barbarian, Rincewind in the Patrician’s palace, Death’s Domain, Ankh-Morpork, the Forest of Skund, Twoflower, The Librarian (enjoying a banana!), and more (and more and more and more).  Terry Pratchett figures largely in the on set stills gallery, as you see him interacting costumed actors and director Vadim Jean.

The official site can be found at thebrokendrum.net, www1.sky.com/colourofmagic/index.html,  and www.sky.com/magic.

Jeremy Irons plays the Patrician in the adaptation in a guest appearance.

Plans are to air The Colour of Magic in two parts over Easter in the U.K. and sometime this summer in the U.S. More specific dates and times have yet to be announced.


For the trailer transcripts, pictures, and continuously updated news, visit www.FromRimToHub.com.

 
 
pratchett_news
12 December 2007 @ 06:16 pm
Folks,

I would have liked to keep this one quiet for a little while, but because of upcoming conventions and of course the need to keep my publishers informed, it seems to me unfair to withhold the news. I have been diagnosed with a very rare form of early onset Alzheimer's, which lay behind this year's phantom "stroke".

We are taking it fairly philosophically down here and possibly with a mild optimism. For now work is continuing on the completion of Nation and the basic notes are already being laid down for Unseen Academicals. All other things being equal, I expect to meet most current and, as far as possible, future commitments but will discuss things with the various organisers. Frankly, I would prefer it if people kept things cheerful, because I think there's time for at least a few more books yet :o)

Terry Pratchett

PS I would just like to draw attention to everyone reading the above that this should be interpreted as 'I am not dead'. I will, of course, be dead at some future point, as will everybody else. For me, this maybe further off than you think - it's too soon to tell. I know it's a very human thing to say "Is there anything I can do", but in this case I would only entertain offers from very high-end experts in brain chemistry.