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598WOSSNAME -- March 2011 -- Special Early Edition

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  • WOSSNAME-owner@yahoogroups.com
    Mar 3, 2011
      Newsletter of the Klatchian Foreign Legion
      March 2011 (Volume 14, Issue 3, post 1)


      05) CLOSE



      Oops – the calendar refused to cooperate this week! Below are
      several hot or date-related items that came in too late to make
      the February edition. Read on...

      – Annie Mac, Editor



      "Good Omens, Australia, Madison & Prague"
      March 1st 2011


      There has been a long time between updates, mostly because since
      early November life has been extremely hectic. A large part of that
      month being mostly spent clearing snow. And then, for some reason,
      Christmas seemed twice as long as any other Christmas, but enjoyable
      nevertheless. And now, since our schedule is always pretty full, the
      world in general believing that the time of an author is expandable,
      we have run into a kind of gridlock with far too many obligations
      and not enough days in the year.

      However, Snuff, with Commander Vimes of the City Watch as the main
      character, is now with the copy editor and I have finished our next
      documentary with the BBC, which has also required our major
      involvement since October. We have answered as much mail as we can
      and as I sit here I see a huge pile of stuff that we will have to
      work through over the next few weeks, while desperately trying to
      make progress on my part of the Long Earth.

      There has been one hell of a lot of rumours regarding a Good Omens
      adaptation over the past few weeks, mostly started by me at the SFX
      Weekender. So, ladies and gentleman, I can hereby exclusively reveal
      that – YES – Neil and myself have shaken hands and received groats
      from Rod Brown sealing a TV deal. An official announcement from
      Prime Focus will follow in a couple of weeks time. However, I can
      reveal right now that Terry Jones (yes, the Python) and Gavin Scott
      (not a Python, but he gets it) are already on the job. It's been a
      long time coming, but it's looking good.

      A word about conventions; unless something reasonably disastrous
      happens, Rob and I will be attending the Australian convention in
      April and I will be doing other engagements in Oz and New Zealand.
      I believe that an event advertised in Melbourne has already sold
      out, in fact, even before we knew the details and I am still unsure
      of the dates of the one in Sydney, although I do know that it will
      be at the Opera House. PLEASE do not ask us for tickets! We do not
      have any! We do not know what they look like! And we wait, with
      bated breath, whether they will actually let us in.

      Again, the second North American convention looks likely, but again,
      health considerations, acts of god (okay, random fluctuations in the
      space/time continuum) and Icelandic dust clouds permitting. We
      intend to get around that by driving to the convention – don't
      ask, but it's going to be fun.

      I know there are going to be smaller conventions in Germany,
      Holland, Ireland and I've even heard a rumour of one in Spain.
      Fortuitously, I will be able (health blah blah blah permitting) to
      attend the second Irish convention because it is just after a
      professorial engagement at Trinity College Dublin. I know this will
      mean an overdose of Guinness, but one has to suffer for his art.

      I cannot guarantee attendance at any of the other smaller
      conventions, simply because no matter what size a convention is, it
      still pretty much takes up the same amount of my time and there are
      so many calls on it, least of which involves writing books, that I
      can't go everywhere. Sorry! But I am not the first person to say
      that I think it a good idea if people put their heads together and
      organised a pan-European convention, which would probably be a lot
      more fun and attract a lot more fans. As it is, we've just returned
      from a whistle-stop visit to Prague to see the final performance of
      Maškaráda at the Dlouhé theatre. It was absolutely superb and I
      am hoping that it really wasn't the last one.

      We know this doesn't work but we continue to repeat it even though
      no one ever takes any notice. PLEASE we would rather you did not
      send your own books for signing – as we've said time and again,
      signed books are available HERE:


      Especially difficult are things sent with a deadline, such as
      'please sign this for my husband, whose birthday is next Thursday'
      which has been posted second class on Tuesday (you would be
      amazed...). Also, Never assume the author is at home or even in the
      country, although he might be wishing that he was. And PLEASE do not
      argue or try to negotiate with us over this.

      I have heard that Professor Roy Jones, Director of the RICE Centre
      for the past twenty five years and also my Alzheimer's specialist,
      is celebrating by running the Bath half marathon. RICE has been the
      recipient of the goodwill of many fannish occasions and they can
      always do with more. God help him, but Roy's job is to work out if I
      am normal or not! Please follow us and take a look at his JustGiving
      page HERE:


      More from me very soon.

      (signed) Terry Pratchett

      To read the original message on the web, go to:




      From BBC News:

      "Author Sir Terry Pratchett has added £10,000 to a reward to help
      catch the killer of 31 swans in Somerset. Sir Terry, who lives in
      Wiltshire, said he was 'incensed at the news' [and] added: 'It's
      wanton destruction of a living creature. People who do this sort of
      thing to an animal are probably a danger to people as well...'

      "The wildlife rescue group Secret World described finding the eight
      shot birds on 22 February as "one of the worst incidents" it had
      ever dealt with. The birds had been shot in the head with airgun
      pellets. One of the swans which survived an earlier attack is still
      recovering at Secret World's centre in East Huntspill. Secret World
      said contributions to the reward, leading to the conviction of those
      responsible, were coming in from all over the country..."


      From This is the West Country:

      "Three people originally stumped up £10,500 between them after
      being disgusted by the shootings... Now, the reward has reached
      more than £20,000 after fantasy writer Terry Pratchett expressed
      his shock at the killings. A further ten swans were found dead in
      Wedmore this week, bringing the total now to 31. Pauline Kidner,
      Secret World founder, told the Weekly News: 'It is hard to
      understand why anyone would do such a callous thing. The only thing
      that we had hoped was that death would have been fairly
      instantaneous as they all appeared to have been killed by someone
      who was quite a good marksman, but the x-rays told us otherwise. A
      lot of swans foraging on crops can cause a lot of damage, but there
      is no excuse for such cruelty. What makes matters worse is that some
      of the swans may well have been ones that we worked so hard to save
      from the ice over the Christmas period...'"

      Secret World is asking anyone with information to contact them on


      From swans.com:

      "Novelist Terry Pratchett has helped more than DOUBLE the bounty on
      offer to catch the cruel person responsible for killing 31 swans –
      rocketing the reward up past £25,000... The wealthy OBE dipped into
      his deep pockets and added £10,000 to the £10,500 collection on
      offer to catch and prosecute the swan sniper. But the reward had
      shot past £25,500 today other donations from wildlife groups and

      "Mr[sic] Pratchett exploded today: 'I heard the reward was £10,500
      and decided I wanted to make it rather larger than that. 20,000. If
      you steal something then you are just doing something that the
      Government does – but this is idiotic and cruel – they are just
      swans for god's sake. They just swim around looking beautiful. Part
      of me thinks that if they get caught they will get some sort of
      community service order – but I'm hoping for something a little
      more medieval than that. Someone has got to show that we are not
      going to stand for this sort of thing. It's not a scrap in the
      street – someone is shooting these great swans for a bit of fun.
      It's wanton destruction and I want to see somebody in court for


      From the Daily Mail:

      "Wildlife workers yesterday found ten more murdered swans near
      Wedmore and offered £10,500 to help catch the swan killer. But
      after Pratchett doubled the reward, and several more members of the
      public offered money, the total amount on offer stood at £26,000...
      Pratchett, 62, said: 'Nobody understands why this is happening. I'm
      at a loss, but I certainly don't think someone should be walking
      around shooting swans. I phoned up this morning and said "this is
      terrible", I was absolutely incensed... I will be following this
      case with interest and I'm sure the RSPCA will be taking it very
      seriously, as will I.'

      "The money will be offered to anyone who comes forward with
      information that leads to a successful prosecution... Sarah Cowen,
      animal care manager at Secret World, said: 'It's amazing to see that
      people are so enraged about the killings that they are coming
      forward and donating very large sums of money. It's always difficult
      with cases like this to get people to talk. If someone is carrying
      out this action they are not likely to be a very nice people and
      others might be afraid of retribution, but this might make someone
      more willing to come forward.'

      "The reward fund was started by Phil New, 53, who lives in nearby
      Highbridge. He said: 'It takes a lot to put a tear in my eye but
      what happened here has achieved that.' The RSPCA said it is already
      investigating the first incident and are able to prosecute..."




      Readers of the Ashbourne News Telegraph must be pleased to hear that
      Sir Pterry is a supporter of Shrovetide Football:

      "Internationally renowned author, Sir Terry Pratchett pledged his
      support for the Royal Shrovetide football game in an exclusive
      interview with the News Telegraph last week. In a scathing dismissal
      of the health and safety regulations which have to be observed in
      the modern game, Sir Terry said: 'I would come and stand side by
      side with you if they ever tried to stop something like this... It's
      a good example of a good old British tradition.' The comments from
      Sir Terry were welcomed by the Shrovetide committee last week.
      Secretary, Mick Betteridge, said: 'We are enormously pleased to know
      that Sir Terry Pratchett gave his full support to the game and the
      continuance and furtherance of the same. There are constraints when
      you're playing a medieval game in the 21st Century...'"



      05) CLOSE

      By the way...here's a link to a photo that to my mind at least is
      exactly what Harry King, Ankh-Morpork's "King of the Golden River",
      and his missus would look like. Appropriately, it's haulage magnate
      Lindsay Fox and *his* wife. Fox, a seriously wealthy businessman who
      owns most of the commercial lorries in Australia, is – like Harry
      – very much a self made man:


      And now it's back to normal for WOSSNAME. See you at the other end
      of the month – and don't forget the pancakes next Tuesday!

      – Annie Mac


      The End. If you have any questions or requests, write:
      Copyright (c) 2011 by Klatchian Foreign Legion