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WOSSNAME -- Main Issue -- January 2012

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    WOSSNAME Newsletter of the Klatchian Foreign Legion January 2012 (Volume 15, Issue 1, Post 1)
    Message 1 of 1 , Jan 22, 2012
      Newsletter of the Klatchian Foreign Legion
      January 2012 (Volume 15, Issue 1, Post 1)
      WOSSNAME is a free publication for members of the worldwide
      Klatchian Foreign Legion and its affiliates, including the North
      American Discworld Society and other continental groups. Are you a
      member? Yes, if you sent in your name, country and e-mail address.
      Are there any dues? No! As a member of the Klatchian Foreign Legion,
      you'd only forget them...
      Editor in Chief: Annie Mac
      News Editor: Fiona (not Bruce) Bruce
      Newshounds: Vera, Mogg, Sir J of Croydon Below, the Shadow
      Staff Writers: Asti, Pitt the Elder, Steven D'Aprano, L.C. Thomas
      Convention Reporters: Mithtrethth Hania Ogg et al
      Staff Technomancer: Jason Parlevliet
      Book Reviews: Drusilla D'Afanguin
      Puzzle Editor: Tiff
      Bard in Residence: Weird Alice Lancrevic
      DW Horoscope: Lady Anaemia Asterisk, Fernando Magnifico
      Emergency Staff: Jason Parlevliet
      World Membership Director: Steven D'Aprano (in his copious spare
      Copyright 2012 by Klatchian Foreign Legion



      06) REVIEW: SNUFF
      07) VALE MARK HALL
      18) CLOSE



      "Unseen Academicals and Good Omens are in pre-production. CSI Ankh-
      Morpork is the working title for the Watch Series..."

      – exciting news from Pterry's Ptwitter, 9th January 2012



      ~opens one bleary eye~

      ~peers around~

      "Eh, it's another new year already. How did that happen...?"

      Welcome to 2012 and the year's first issue of WOSSNAME!

      ~peers around again~

      On with the show...

      – Annie Mac



      With another USA election year looming, American blogger Maggie
      Flynn has a novel idea:

      "So we have another election year bearing down on us like a tidal
      wave of endless campaign updates and a never-ending circuit of
      commercials with ominous music and voice-overs. I don't know about
      most of the people in this country, but I end up getting depressed
      and annoyed every single election year, since none of the candidates
      seem capable of leading a one- acre farm. But after much thought and
      reflection on the state of our country, I'm going to humbly cast my
      support for: Lord Havelock Vetinari, current Patrician of Ankh-
      Morpork. 'But he's a tyrant! you say. 'This is America, dammit! We
      don't put stock in dictators here!' Hear me out! Vetinari may not be
      democratically elected, but he isn't technically a dictator- he's
      the Patrician. He runs the country by sitting back and talking to a
      few people, using just a few words. Then he lets the country work
      itself... Having the Patrician running our country would completely
      do away with the problem of the two-party system... One doesn't need
      much in the way of 'support' when one has the whole country in the
      palm of one's hand..."


      And for those of you who want to adorn your carriages (or walls, or
      copybooks...) with an appropriate bumper sticker:




      First there was that lovely Radio Times cover featuring our
      favourite author, and now at last came the after-party:

      "It's always one of the glitziest, most exclusive showbiz parties of
      the year – and the 2012 Radio Times Covers Party was no exception.
      Celebs who had the rare honour of appearing on the cover of Radio
      Times magazine last year – and a few select others who received
      one of our much sought-after invitations – came to London's super-
      swanky Claridge's to receive framed copies, at a ceremony compered
      by Graham Norton and RT editor Ben Preston... Some of those
      attending were particularly honoured guests. Radio Times was very
      pleased to welcome Terry Pratchett, who collected the cover for his
      ground-breaking documentary Choosing to Die. 'Thank you Radio
      Times,' Pratchett tweeted as he made his way home. 'You sure know
      how to throw a superb party... so many people to thank for their
      company, but Big Respect to Warwick Davis and [Davis's wife]




      In the UK, the Commission on Assisted Dying, set up in September
      2010 and chaired by former Lord Chancellor Charles Falconer, has
      made a report, on assisted death and on possible recommendations for
      changes in the current laws, that has stirred up debate in many
      quarters. If you wish to read the Commission's report in its
      entirety, it is available as a PDF file:


      About the Commission:


      From Pterry himself, in The Sun:

      "The report by the Commission on Assisted Dying is very much a step
      forward. For a long time people in the United Kingdom have been
      talking about assisted dying, which is already legal in a number of
      countries and in the US states of Oregon, Montana and Washington. My
      father once said to me, 'If you see me in a hospital bed with tubes
      coming out of me and no possible hope of recovery, switch me off.'
      Like it or not, a lot of people in the UK agree with that view. My
      father, David Pratchett, was an engineer, a working man. He didn't
      see that forcing someone to suffer through death was right. It's
      like sending them to hell before they've even passed away. I've
      inherited my father's stoicism and also his attitude to death, which
      is largely in line with the Commission on Assisted Dying's findings.

      "The critics are overlooking several crucial points. For a start,
      you would have to be in a clear state of mind to avail yourself of
      an assisted suicide and be able to say clearly what you want. As my
      Alzheimer's progresses I will no longer have that clarity, which
      would rule me out as a potential candidate.

      "In the Netherlands they are discussing the possibility of people
      with Alzheimer's making a living will. This would allow a physician
      who is caring for them to administer the necessary drugs for a
      painless death when the disease became suitably advanced. However,
      that isn't a procedure being considered or even backed in the UK.

      "Many people who disagree with the report claim a large part of the
      British population is nervous about assisted suicide. I totally
      disagree. Instead, I think there are a lot of organisations which
      have made it their agenda to promote this view.

      "Let's not forget the report insists anyone who qualifies for an
      assisted death must be near the end of their life. There are lots of
      safeguards in place to ensure no vulnerable patients are somehow
      forced into a death they don't want. The Commission says the patient
      must be of sound mind, firm of purpose and suffering a debilitating
      and incurable condition. We are talking about someone making a very
      big decision to die. The procedure would involve doctors and reports
      and various levels of bureaucracy. It is a harrowing situation and
      not something that could conceivably be forced on the weak against
      their will. But with the relevant safeguards in place, I don't see
      why a country such as Britain could not introduce assisted suicide
      successfully. To claim otherwise is smoke and mirrors — it's

      "As it stands, British people who want assisted death have to travel
      to the Dignitas clinic in Switzerland. I have the paperwork for
      Dignitas myself but haven't completed the application. Having to die
      abroad, away from my family in a strange environment, is not what I
      want. My ideal death would be sitting out on the lawn, with a glass
      of brandy in my hand. The English composer Thomas Tallis would be
      playing on my Walkman, birds would be singing — and possibly with
      an attractive physician by my side. If not that, then a comfortable
      death a long time in the future, when I still know who I am, in my
      own surroundings, with people I love around me.

      "It is nothing to do with the sanctity of life, but the dignity."


      Sir Pterry was interviewed on ITV. For those of you who can access
      it, the full interview is here:


      A piece from the UK Press Association:

      "Sir Terry, who has campaigned for a change to the law over assisted
      dying since being diagnosed with Alzheimer's disease in 2007, said
      care homes have the same connotations for some older people as
      workhouses used to have. He said Thursday's report from the
      Commission on Assisted Dying, which he helped fund, did not go far
      enough. But he admitted there was little prospect of progress over
      the next few years. The award-winning Discworld author said the poor
      quality of end-of-life care in the UK was leading to people
      travelling to the controversial Dignitas clinic in Switzerland,
      where he filmed the Choosing to Die documentary last year, to die.
      While Sir Terry, 63, conceded he does not 'necessarily agree with
      everything Dignitas stands for', he said: 'I'm glad that it's there,
      because it's a spur. If you don't like people going to Dignitas,
      what can you provide them with here? And what you can provide them
      with is a certain amount of commonsense thinking. And I would say a
      declaration that somebody's life is their own and does not belong to
      the sodding Government.'..."


      In The Guardian:

      "The report is careful to stop short of calling for legalisation,
      stressing that any such debate would be a matter for parliament, but
      it is clear that the current law "is inadequate, incoherent and
      should not continue". It remains explicitly illegal to help someone
      to die in England and Wales, though since new guidelines were
      introduced two years ago by the director of public prosecutions Keir
      Starmer, prosecutors, in effect, turn a blind eye. More than 40
      cases have been considered since that date but resulted in no
      charge. The new legal framework proposed by the commission, if
      adopted by the government, would change that, opening the door for
      the first time to legal assisted suicide in Britain.

      "The criteria, however, are stringent, and not all those with
      serious or even terminal illnesses would be permitted to ask their
      doctor to prescribe them lethal medication. Only those who were over
      18 and had been diagnosed as having fewer than 12 months to live
      would be eligible, and then only if they could show that they were
      making the decision voluntarily, without coming under any pressure
      from family members, and had "no sense of being a burden". Two
      independent doctors would have to agree with the diagnosis, and also
      agree the person was aware of all the social and medical help
      available to them, and was not influenced by depression or a
      treatable mental illness. Under the proposals, Pratchett and others
      with Alzheimer's would be unlikely to be eligible, since a person
      with dementia who had less than a year to live would be unlikely to
      be judged mentally competent..."


      In the Daily Mail:

      "Critics have raised concerns over the impartiality of the
      commission, which was set up and funded by the author Sir Terry
      Pratchett, who has Alzheimer's disease, and high street businessman
      Bernard Lewis. Both are supporters of legalising assisted dying.
      Lord Falconer himself has previously warned that the law on assisted
      suicide was 'no longer fit', while most of the individuals on the
      11-strong commission have expressed their support for a change in
      the law in the past..."


      In The Telegraph, several pieces:

      "The peer and barrister [Lord Falconer], who served as Tony Blair's
      Lord Chancellor, writes in The Daily Telegraph that the rarely used
      law against aiding suicide only favours those terminally ill people
      with the money and support to see their final wishes carried out.
      Meanwhile others are being forced to take their lives early rather
      than facing the worry of their loved ones being arrested for helping
      them if they became incapable. He says that even if 'patchy' care
      for the terminally ill were improved in hospitals and hospices
      around the country, there would still be some who wanted to die at
      the time of their choosing 'rather than face a period of reduced
      function and independence in their final illness'. But Lord
      Falconer, who has chaired the independent commission on assisted
      dying that reports on Thursday, says that his experts 'did not like
      much of what they saw' at Dignitas, the Swiss clinic where more than
      160 Britons have been given legal help to die in 'alien
      surroundings' over the past decade..."


      "Although helping someone to die is punishable by up to 14 years'
      imprisonment and police still investigate all cases, there have been
      no prosecutions since landmark guidelines were set out almost two
      years ago. The Commission says the situation is "very
      distressing" for families, "uncertain" for health workers and
      place a 'deeply challenging burden' on police and prosecutors. Under
      its plans, doctors would be allowed to prescribe drugs to end the
      lives of terminally ill patients who have fewer than 12 months to
      live provided they are judged to have the mental capacity and clear
      desire to die..."


      ...and a Q&A about the Commission:


      In The Australian Eye:

      "The final report of the commission, chaired by the former Labour
      Lord Chancellor Lord Falconer, concludes: "There is a strong case
      for providing the choice of assisted dying for terminally ill
      people. Even with skilled end-of-life care, the Commission finds
      that a comparatively small number of people who are terminally ill
      experience a degree of suffering towards the end of their life that
      they consider can only be relieved either by ending their own life,
      or by the knowledge that they can end their life at a time of their
      own choosing." The recommendations are likely to be discussed in
      Parliament. Any move to implement them will probably face strong
      opposition from politicians and much of the medical profession..."


      In the Wall Street Journal's LiveMint blog:

      "It's fascinating to read the transcripts of the evidence presented
      before the Commission. For instance, Peter Bailey, a trustee with
      the London Cheshire Disability, and himself disabled for the last 35
      years after breaking his back: 'I'm concerned that opportunity would
      become obligation; that the onset of impairment releases huge angst
      at the loss of capacity and function; and that at that time we need
      protection from ourselves, but those times will pass. And finally,
      in the world of disability we really need help to live, not help to
      die... I just think death is part of living. The idea that you can
      come along and subcontract out of a bit of it doesn't seem quite
      right to me really. It's part of our contribution to the world,
      coping with situations like (terminal illness)'...

      "Surprisingly, at least one priest supported assisted dying. Said
      Rabbi Danny Rich, chief executive of Liberal Judaism: "We consider
      heroic those who die in certain circumstances. If I throw myself in
      front of a car to save another person, and I die, that would be
      heroic. If I'm a soldier sent off to war by government, I am heroic.
      I'm not sure that it isn't heroic, or the right of an individual to
      say that I myself feel that I am burdening my relatives, and
      therefore I myself, as an independent human being, taking account of
      everything before me, could say that I don't wish my children to be
      dragged to see me, or feel morally obliged to see me, or guilty
      about not coming to see me, in a particular moment (and)... I want
      to make a decision to end my life.'..."


      The UK Human Rights Blog's piece:

      "The Commission was funded by two supporters of assisted suicide,
      author Terry Pratchett and businessman Bernard Lewis, and despite
      reassurances that the running and outcome of the Commission were
      independent, some individuals and groups opposed to the practice
      regrettably refused to give evidence to the Commission. Still, the
      range and quantity of the evidence, which included evidence gathered
      from international research visits, qualitative interviews and focus
      groups, commissioned papers, and seminars, is impressive and can be
      read and watched here: http://www.commissiononassisteddying.co.uk/

      "...the report is cautious and pragmatic in its attempt to stimulate
      a change in the law. In the eyes of society, the assisted suicide
      of already-dying competent adults (permitted in Oregon, Switzerland
      and Luxembourg, for example) is more palatable than the euthanasia
      of chronically ill children (permitted in the Netherlands)... the
      report concludes that 'it is possible to devise a legal framework
      that would set out strictly defined circumstances in which
      terminally ill people could be assisted to die' while protecting
      vulnerable people. And so the report suggests a number of
      safeguards, ranging from medical advice and support to a settled
      intention to die (i.e., a minimum of 2 weeks from request to
      assisted death) to the safe storage and transportation of the lethal
      drugs to the establishment of a national monitoring commission (an
      independent statutory body reporting o the Department of Health).
      Importantly, it acknowledges that assisted suicide must co-exist
      with high quality health and social care services. The lawfulness
      of assisted suicide should not signal the death knell of palliative


      Academic Kevin Yuill, who is not a philosopher by trade, has doubts,
      in an op-ed piece worth reading in Spiked Online:

      "Therein lies the biggest difficulty for proponents. How to justify
      allowing assisting suicides for some and not others? Moving the
      qualification point for assistance, from having six months to live
      to having 12 months to live, is arbitrary and belies the
      commission's 'core principle' that 'all forms of discrimination in
      end-of-life care should be ended as far as possible, whether these
      are based on geographical location, physical condition, ethnicity or
      wealth'. Isn't this 12-month rule discriminatory on the basis of
      physical condition? Why suicide for some who suffer and not for
      others? After all, prominent suicides like Daniel James and
      proponents like Debbie Purdy would not be allowed to be helped to
      die by the commission's recommended plan.

      "Assisted suicide is an either/or question. Either we give the
      thumbs up to all acts of self-destruction, whether they be for
      reasons of religious belief, suffering in the throes of a failed
      love affair or because of the onset of a terminal illness, or we
      continue to refuse to regard death as appropriate therapy. That is
      not to say that there are never cases where death is desirable, or
      that assisting or even causing death is always wrong. But these are
      individual – as opposed to institutional or bureaucratic – acts
      of compassion. The existing law generally works in dealing with
      these situations..."



      06) REVIEW: SNUFF

      Giles Hardie in the Sydney Morning Herald:

      "Pratchett knows his genre tropes, however, which means whenever a
      lawman goes on a trip, crime is sure to follow. Pratchett by now has
      more than a few tropes of his own, so the victims of this crime are
      yet another species imported from fantasy – goblins. As ever,
      Pratchett takes the goblins of folklore – a reviled, dirty,
      untrustworthy species, as illustrated by every author up to J.K.
      Rowling – and explores with whimsy and wit the sort of xenophobia
      and cultural misunderstanding that might fuel such a stereotype. All
      this occurs while Vimes and his Watch traverse Discworld to solve a
      twisting crime, partake in more than a few silly sidebars and Vimes
      takes time to bond with his son, Young Samuel.

      If you have never read a Pratchett book before, don't start with
      Snuff. This is not a statement about the book's quality. Merely that
      book 39 in any series is not likely to be an ideal point of
      introduction. Despite every effort by the author to engage the
      novice, there is a finely detailed world of backstory to this tale
      that cannot be conveyed in a prologue and the Pratchett trademark
      hysterical footnotes..."



      07) VALE MARK HALL

      An obituary in The Telegraph for Mark Hall, who was half of the
      world-famed Cosgrove Hall animation partnership, co-creator of
      Danger Mouse and of course a Discworld animator:

      "Hall was the business brains with a talent for model-making;
      Cosgrove was the ideas man, a storyboard wizard with a gift for
      traditional cartoon animation. The success of the series gave them
      the financial security to embark on other children's animation
      projects... In the 1990s Cosgrove Hall began a fruitful partnership
      with Terry Pratchett, collaborating on an animated adaptation of
      Truckers, the first book in The Bromeliad (which follows the
      attempts of a group of gnomes, marooned on Earth after their
      spaceship crash-lands, to return home). In 1997 they produced two
      series for Channel 4 based on Wyrd Sisters and Soul Music, two
      novels from Pratchett's Discworld series...."




      From Guards!Guards! co-creator David Brashaw, exciting news:

      "We officially sold out world-wide on 5 December 2011, less than
      three months after launch, not bad for a couple of guys... We are
      now considering a re-print, based on projected demand, other games
      (not necessarily DW), being at DWCon in Birmingham, maybe, possibly,
      going to the Czechoslovakia DWCon and more. Exciting times...

      "We are currently running a win a GG t-shirt competition on our FB
      site. All fans have to do is post a photo on our walll and tell us
      who won, or what they enjoyed doing most on another player etc. If
      they have trouble posting it they can link to it on flicker or other
      photo site. The competition will run until midnight (UK) time on 31

      "We found recently that players really appreciated the Turn Guide in
      the update FAQs on our website, cause then they could remember 'all'
      of the things they could do on their turn."


      [Editor's note: owing to something quite weird happening to
      WOSSNAME's Games Master, our inaugural game of Guards!Guards! was
      unavoidably delayed. Stay tuned for a full review very soon,




      The Lichfield Players present their production of Lords and Ladies
      in February.

      When: Wednesday 1st February – Saturday 4th February 2012
      Venue: Main Auditorium, Lichfield Garrick, Castle Dyke, Lichfield,
      WS13 6HR
      Time: 7.30pm
      Tickets: £10, Seniors £9, Children £6
      Box Office 01543 412121
      Online bookings: http://tinyurl.com/7jhmera

      Tickets are now on sale and can be booked by calling the box office
      on 01543 412121 or visiting www.lichfieldgarrick.com



      Act One Cardiff will present the Welsh stage premiere of Monstrous
      Regiment in February.

      When: 22nd-25th February 2012
      Venue: The Gate Arts and Community Centre, Keppoch Street, Roath,
      Time: 7.30pm (Saturday matinee 2.30pm)
      Tickets: £7 (£5 Concession)
      £1.50 admin fee online/phone payments
      Phone and buy from The Gate Box Office on (029) 2048 3344 (card
      payment) Visit Reception @ The Gate, Keppoch St, Roath, Cardiff CF24
      3JW (card or cash)


      Here be the excellent poster for the production:

      Here be director Amy Davies' blog about the production, from its

      "This week we took a Monstrous cast trip to the society's panto
      where my ladies were able to observe some great examples of girls
      playing 'lads'. There was nose picking and ball scratching galore,
      along with the occasional exploration of an ear.Monstrous was also
      mentioned in the Guardian's top 10 instances of women dressed as
      men. So now the hardcore 'man training' begins. My cast are getting
      used to notes along the lines of 'Scratch your balls more' or 'there
      wasn't enough nose picking in that scene'. In fact, we've started to
      do it outside of rehearsal. Even me and I'm not in it. We've tried
      just the basic walking like men technique and we obviously all have
      very different ideas on how men walk, either that or we're all
      observing very different men..."



      Unseen Theatre, the Southern Hemisphere's premier Discworld stage
      company, presents Pratchett Pieces Three, "bite-sized Pratchett
      comedies adapted especially for the 2012 Adelaide Fringe", in

      "This is the third time that Unseen Theatre Company has presented
      bite-sized Terry Pratchett comedies especially for the Adelaide
      Fringe, but this time we are giving you even more! – A full season
      of shows immediately prior to the Fringe and three nights at the
      beginning of the Fringe season. Pratchett Pieces Three will consist
      of three brand new plays (never seen before), and a chance to catch
      up on a couple from Pratchett Pieces One and Two, that you may have
      missed in previous Fringe seasons. If you are a Pratchett fan you
      cannot afford to miss this! If you are not a fan yet, come along and
      see what all the fuss is about! Please note that although Pratchett
      Pieces Three runs for our normal full season, only three nights of
      this season will be over the Fringe period. These nights are Feb 22,
      23, & 24."

      Included are the world premieres of a handful of famous short
      stories -- Death and What Comes Next, The Trial (based on The Sea
      and Little Fishes), Hollywood Chickens, Turntables of the Night, and
      A Collegiate Casting Out of Devilish Devices.

      "Adapted for the stage by Pamela Munt... Featuring a troupe of
      actors especially devoted to this production... Directed by Pamela
      Munt and David Dyte... Lighting design by Stephen Dean."

      When: Preview night Fri. 10 Feb 2012, Opening night 11 Feb 2012,
      Season continues Wed to Sat at 8pm until Fri. 24 Feb 2012

      Venue: Main Stage, The Bakehouse Theatre, 255 Angas St, Adelaide
      Time: 8.00pm (duration of show is 90 minutes plus interval)
      Tickets:: Adult $18, Conc $15, Bank SA $15/ Fringe Benefits $15
      Bookings: For shows up until Feb 21, book at
      www.bakehousetheatre.com. For Fringe shows on Feb 22, 23, 24 Book at
      http://www.adelaidefringe.com.au | 1300 FRINGE | Fringe
      TIX Outlets: Rundle Mall, Gawler Place Canopy/ Adelaide Fringe
      Office, 105 Hindley Street/ East End, cnr. East Tce & Rundle Rd
      (Open from 16 February)


      Open auditions are scheduled for the last week of January for Buxton
      Drama League's upcoming production of Mort:

      "We are looking for people to play a wide range of parts including
      Mort, Princess Keli, Albert, Ysabell, Rincewind and Death – 'an
      anthropomorphic personification'. However, there are also many more
      roles that feature in the play that require actors with ages that
      range from 13 upwards.

      "Auditions will take place at the Old Hall Hotel, Buxton on Thursday
      26th January between 7pm and 9pm and on Saturday 28th January
      between 11am and 1pm. Audition pieces will be provided on arrival.
      Performances will take place at Buxton's prestigious Opera House on
      Friday 22 June 2012 at 7:30 pm and on Saturday 23 June at 2:30 PM
      and 7:30 pm."

      For more information, email buxtondrama@...


      Buxton Drama League was founded by Mrs G Lenthall in 1922 and
      performs regularly at Buxton Opera House, the Arts Centre and
      Burbage Institute:



      "The plot was tied together by a group of narrators whose expressive
      clarity and projection set up from the start the professional
      approach to all aspects of the production that meant that one did
      not need to make any allowances for it being a 'children's
      performance'. The pre-recorded music worked very well; I have always
      been somewhat dubious about this practice but here it clearly gave
      much confidence to the performers and enabled them to focus on
      performing the songs – not to mention the often elaborate
      choreography, a particular highlight being the Year 3 Trap Disposal
      squad's tight and focused performance of their big number near the
      start of the show which, as with all the other major numbers slickly
      combined sharp dance moves with well-focused and projected singing.
      Rat King Cole and the Ratettes were particularly musically strong
      and this element combined with visual impact made their parts of the
      show some of the most musically enjoyable.

      "One of the best aspects of the production was that there was a wide
      range of character parts which enabled young actors to shine briefly
      on the stage without the pressure of having a major part and for all
      of these roles the characters came across clearly and distinctively
      through a variety of dramatic means, be it speech, costume, movement
      or a combination of all three as with the townsfolk who clearly
      created distinctive characters. This was a major reason for the
      success of the evening – the fact that there was 100% plus
      commitment from all on the stage allowing the story to be told with
      passion and clarity..."


      And for those of you who might want to, or know someone who might
      want to, put on TAMAHER The Musical, here's where to buy the

      "Sir Terry Pratchett's ingeniously upended tale of the Pied Piper,
      has a roving band of highly intelligent rats as its heroic
      protagonists. Matthew Holmes' script and songs capture the plot in a
      captivating musical for children to perform and everyone to enjoy...
      Perfect for upper primary school performances, there are parts small
      and large for rats – heroic, villainous and oppressed – for humans
      on the good side and the bad, and of course for a cat named Maurice.
      The complete performance pack with its photocopiable script and
      piano vocal score includes everything you need for rehearsing and
      presenting the final show, plus there's full audio support on CD
      so you don't need to read a note of music."

      RRP £29.99
      Online Price £27.00





      In This is Dorset, a report on what could be called a backwards

      "The facade of The Discworld Emporium on Wincanton's High Street now
      looks as it did in 1907. Master craftsmen, father and son team
      Gordon and Jeremy Champion used an old photograph for reference to
      ensure the restoration was true to the shop's history. Bernard
      Pearson of The Discworld Emporium said: 'Gordon and his team have
      done a fine job, turning a nondescript shop front into a work of
      art. It is an amalgam of some of the finest craftsmanship you will
      see in the world.'... Working from the photograph of the premises
      when it was a watchmakers' shop more than 100 years ago, Gordon and
      Jeremy produced all the joinery for the restoration in their West
      Hill workshop. The works took four months to complete...

      "Mr Pearson revealed that he and his Discworld Emporium business
      partners, wife Isobel Pearson, Reb Voice and Ian Mitchell have
      secured a deal to produce a series of four new books with Terry
      Pratchett. The titles will be based in a fictional city twinned with
      Wincanton, which the team is now busy creating... An official
      celebration to mark the restoration of The Discworld Emporium will
      be held in April next year, and will be attended by Sir Terry

      (includes then-and-now iconographs!)




      In the online publication Wincanton Window, "Discworld journalist"
      Periwinkle (aka Lora Pendragon and sometimes Mandy Eldred-Tyler)
      made an excellent, long and informative report on Wincanton's
      Hogswatch Weekend:

      "We sit on the Hogfather's knee and get presents; we partake in a
      delicious sausage supper in the local hostelries of The Bear, The
      Dolphin and The Nog and all weekend our town is buzzing with
      Watchmen, Barbarians, Witches, Vampires, Igors, Elves and other
      strange sights but all in the name of charity and fun! The last
      weekend in November was no exception – Bernard Pearson and his
      team, who run the Discworld Emporium in Wincanton High Street,
      unveiled their newly restored shop front (restored to its original
      1907 glory) and Sir Terry took time out from turning on the
      Christmas lights at Burnham-on-Sea to visit and spend the weekend
      with fans old and new... With over 700 fans – a lot of them
      newcomers – attending, Sir Terry was on fine form and said how
      lovely it was to see so many people enjoying themselves at
      Hogswatch! He also gave us a little insight into his next book –
      always a treat when you attend these events...

      "Hogswatch and the other Discworld events held in the town raise a
      lot of money for charity, both local and national Wincanton was at
      first sceptical about our events but more local businesses are
      getting involved each time we hold an event – this time for
      example a new addition was the Lunchbox which made the Hogswatch
      dish 'Boozy Figgins' which went down wonderfully well, selling out
      by lunchtime Saturday and then despite the lovely Lunchbox owners
      getting up at 6.00am and making more they again sold out within
      hours of opening time on Sunday!! Andrew Barclay, the Wincanton
      Butcher, made over 1,000 sausages for our annual Sausage Supper and
      The Dolphin pub laid on special barrels of Discworld Cider – a
      potent brew which went down well with locals and visitors alike..."


      The Discworld Emporium is located at 41 High Street, Wincanton,
      Somerset BA9 9JU. Opening hours are: Monday, Tuesday, Friday &
      Saturday: 10:00am-4:00pm; closed Wednesday and Thursday; Sundays
      open by appointment only, phone in advance: Telephone: 01963 824686.




      13.1 AUSDWCON NEWS

      Nullus Anxietas IV, the fourth (well duh) official Australian
      Discworld convention, will be in Melbourne on the 9th-11th March
      2013 at the Bell Rydges, Preston. But despair not, you won't have to
      wait that long for some Fourecksian Discworld action! The Unseen
      University Convivium – a "gathering, shindig or hootenanny (delete
      whichever is inappropriate) of Discworld fans", takes place in
      Adelaide, South Australia, on the 6th-8th July 2012 at the
      University of Adelaide. Here be the latest news, in their own
      wizzardly words:

      +++ HEX OS V2012 BOOTING... +++
      +++ READY. +++
      +++ HAPPY NEW YEAR! +++

      Good afternoon, staff and students. We just wanted to give you a
      quick update about the preparations for the Unseen University
      Convivium to be held in Adelaide, South Australia, Roundworld, on
      July 6-8, 2012.


      The current cheap prices for membership
      (Full $80, Concession $70, Child $60) are set to end in a mere few
      weeks, on 1st March. If you would like to be a worm-catching early
      bird, be sure to purchase your tickets now!

      If you can not yet commit to a complete purchase, another way to
      guarantee a cheaper price is by purchasing a supporting membership
      ($30) which may be upgraded later by simply paying the difference
      between it and the full ticket price as it currently stands.

      For more details, see http://ausdwcon.org/pages/membership
      and you can purchase tickets at http://ausdwcon.org/memberships/new


      Ever wanted to declare yourself a Rocket Wizard? Or play for Unseen
      Academicals? Or perhaps carry your books in a bag marked with the UU
      Library Rules?

      The Faculty have designed some magical merchandise to help promote
      and support the Unseen University Convivium, and you can purchase it
      right now! T-shirts, bags, coffee mugs, stickers, and various other
      knick-knacks can be bought at http://www.cafepress.com/unseenuni

      These items are not limited, and can be purchased by anybody,
      anywhere in the world. So go to it!

      We are also planning to have a few convention attendees-only items
      which will be able to be pre-ordered via our website and picked up
      at the Convivium. More information on those at a later date!

      +++ ANY QUESTIONS? +++

      For further information, please read our website:
      or contact us via
      Facebook http://facebook.com/UnseenUni
      Twitter http://twitter.com/UnseenUni or
      Email: UnseenUni2012@...

      Chair for the Public Misunderstanding of Magic
      Unseen University Convivium 2012
      Adelaide, South Australia, 6-8 July 2012

      +++ END OF LINE +++


      "After successfully surviving the Assassins of Ankh-Morpork in 2011
      we are taking the German Discworld Convention 2013 to their home
      continent Klatch! Make room in your schedule from October 3rd to
      6th in 2013 for the fourth German Discworld Convention."




      The City of Small Gods Terry Pratchett Fan Club meets on the last
      Thursday of the month from 6.30pm at the Ed Castle, 233 Currie St,
      Adelaide (South Australia). Details, discussions and organisation of
      extra events (such as play outings) are held on their email mailing
      list, so do sign up at:



      The next meeting of the Broken Drummers, London's original Discworld
      meeting group, will be from 7pm on 6th February 2012 at the Monkey
      Puzzle, 30 Southwick Street, London W2 1JQ.



      Drummers Downunder meet on the first Monday of every month in Sydney
      at Maloneys, corner of Pitt & Goulburn Streets, at 6.30pm. The next
      meeting will be on 6th February 2012. For more information, contact
      Sue (aka Granny Weatherwax) on kenworthys@...


      Perth Drummers meet on the traditional of first Monday of the month.
      The next meeting will be from 6pm on 6th February 2012 at The
      Vic Hotel, 226 Hay St, Subiaco. For more information contact:
      Daniel Hatton at daniel_j_hatton@...




      You may remember, O Readers, a recent-ish Roundworld Tales report on
      the there-and-gone-again island of Ferdinandea and its Jingo-
      reminiscent disputes. here's another one:

      "A new volcanic island has appeared in the Red Sea almost overnight.
      The eruption was first reported by local fishermen in mid-December
      2011, 40 miles off the coast of Yemen... According to NASA, the land
      is "now about 530 by 710 meters (1,700 by 2,300 feet) across."


      About Ferdinandea again, for reference:

      "Despite showing signs in both 2000 and 2002, the seismicity did not
      lead to volcanic eruptions and as of 2006 Ferdinandea's summit
      remains about 6 metres (20 ft) below sea level. Should it reappear,
      Federico Eichberg, an international relations expert based in Rome,
      believes it would do so within Italian territorial waters — and in
      all probability would be formally claimed by Italy. Eichberg does
      not expect that a renewed international rumpus would arise..."



      In the LiveJournal Discworld community, Marveen writes:

      "It turns out that the one-shot crossbow that one can hide down
      one's pants (requiring nerves and other parts of steel) is
      historical Roundworld. Apparently in ancient China it was known as
      the back crossbow. The bolt was propelled by a powerful spring. The
      bolt head had a notch in it which caught a swiveling springloaded
      trigger. One strapped it to one's back, bowed--properly!--to the
      target and pulled a string, tripping the trigger and releasing a
      forty-pound spring-and-piston arrangement. According to the History
      Channel's 'Death Weapons of the East' program, it was usually
      coupled with poison and thus more of an 'eventual' death than an
      'instant' death. (There was also mention of a version that fired
      five smaller darts rather than one stouter bolt, on what I suppose
      we'd call the scattergonne principle.)"




      A hedgehog can't be er um several things, but it can be crowned with
      a strawberry:




      Blogger Geoffrey got seriously lost in virtual Discworld:

      "On the second day of Christmas we were bored. No thing to do, no
      place to go out to (shops ins Poland are closed on national
      holidays, so are restaurants, and everything else but gas stations),
      and after a few days of them we also had enough of family. My
      tolerance for stuff like that is low anyway. So I thought: 'Hmm, why
      not play the Discworld MUD for a while again?'. And then I thought:
      'God, that is a bad idea, isn't it?' 'Why is it a bad idea?' asked
      my girlfriend. 'Because the last two times I had this thought I lost
      a week each on playing this game.' 'So where is the problem? You
      have a week of holidays right now.' she said then. And so, half-
      convinced it was a good idea, I started the game, created an Agatean
      called Lee, and, just as predicted, I only got out of it more or
      less at New Years' Eve..."

      (Post includes extensive descriptions of Discworld MUD and various
      Discworld MUD links)


      Blogger Just Jacqui reviews Witches Abroad:

      "This book delves into some of our favorite childhood stories and
      turns them inside out. Little Red Riding Hood is an obnoxious brat
      and the big bad wolf is neither big nor bad, just a wolf tragically
      altered by a demented fairy godmother obsessed with stories and
      happy endings. As Terry Pratchett put it: 'Lilith held a mirror up
      to life, and chopped all the bits off life that didn't fit...' Dive
      into this book and you'll find several of your favorite stories
      waiting for you: including The Hobbit, the Three Little Pigs, the
      Wizard of Oz, and Sleeping Beauty.

      "The thing about Terry Pratchett novels is that I always walk away
      feeling smarter. The writing is superb, full of real-world allusions
      and tongue-in-cheek humor, all of which is great. I leave them
      entertained, but also wiser. The way he takes universal truths and
      couches them in humor is awe-inspiring..."


      Blogger Captain Amanda reviews Going Postal:

      "If you haven't read anything by Pratchett, think Lemony Snicket (A
      Series of Unfortunate Events). There's that same wit and humour
      woven into the narration. Take, for instance, the name of the female
      lead. Adora Bell Dearheart. I love it. I so delightfully quirky. My
      favourite character though, is the executioner who introduces
      himself as follows. '"Good morning, Mr Spangler." He raised the hood
      helpfully. "It's me, sir, Daniel 'One Drop' Trooper. I am your
      executioner for today, sir. Don't you worry, sir. I've hanged dozens
      of people. We'll soon have you out of here."' How can you not love a
      character like that?..."


      Blogger The Mad Hatter writes a general thank-you to Terry Pratchett
      for his life and works:

      "Pratchett is a tongue-in-cheek writer who adds comedy and satire
      throughout each book. The books read quickly but are ones that can
      be reread several times. You may catch something in a second reading
      that you hadn't noticed the first time through. Pratchett loves to
      tie in characters from previous books, so familiar names will
      continue to pop up throughout the series. However, the best Terry
      Pratchett reading I've done has been of the interviews he's given
      over the past few years. Pratchett was diagnosed with early onset
      Alzheimer's in 2007 and has been open and honest about his reactions
      and life since. In no way could I do justice to the interviews he's
      given, so instead I'll include links to a couple of the better ones
      I've read..."

      [Editor's note: nice looking blog, Hatter! I congratulate you on
      your choice of page design.]


      Blogger Hatch 22 reviews Snuff:

      "This is a simple tale of Samuel Vimes being Samuel Vimes, and fans
      will love it for that... In Snuff he finally agrees to take a well-
      deserved holiday. A break from Ankh-Morpork for his wife and six-
      year old son (who is very good at reading but chooses only to read
      about poo) sounds like a good idea. Until a crime is discovered,
      that is, and Vetinari's terrier, one of Vimes' less official titles,
      sniffs out the deep and dark secrets of the countryside borne from
      the attitude of its high and mighty towards what they consider to be
      the vermin of society. While this may sound like a thematic
      dissection of the double-standards of society, rest assured that
      Snuff comfortably veers away from patronizing and over-condescending
      preaching about racism and morals. These themes may be obvious in
      the novel, but they are never zealously thrust into the readers'
      faces, as lesser writers would do. Snuff develops into a simple tale
      of quintessential Vimes, who finds something wrong and moves heaven
      and earth, and hell, to set things right..."


      ...as does blogger Moirads, who applies it to her own country:

      "The parallels with South African society are all too obvious to
      those of us who wish to see them. The long arm of the law for the
      most part is corrupt. Look out for the abuses of the privileges that
      go with powerful positions, the misappropriation of monies entrusted
      to people who should be using them for the good of all, the turning
      of a blind eye to the mistreatment of others on the grounds that
      they are not human. Yes, the goblins smell and are dim and steal.
      South Africans have lived with these prejudices before. We have
      pledged that we never will again. But some things are part of
      humanity's base desires wherever they find themselves. We as a
      society need people like Vimes..."


      Blogger Freedomtights has discovered Pratchett by way of A Hat Full
      of Sky:

      "I hadn't read anything by him before. But after reading A Hat Full
      of Sky I wonder what took me so damn long. It was probably because
      the IN YOUR FACE fantasy scared me away. You know the stuff – the
      scary bit in the library where the fuzzy-faced, big eyed people hang
      around and worship. But that was a misconception, I know that now.
      My favourite creature in A Hat Full of Sky is the Nac Mac Feegle
      which are Scottish blue ugly fairies... Pratchett is very funny. In
      similar ways to Gaiman (which I assume Gaiman probably copied took
      inspiration from the original fantasy man himself!) the narration is
      very tongue in cheek. While Gaiman gets very caught up in the
      folklore and grit and the uglier stuff of a faerie (it is faerie,
      not fairy to Gaiman) Pratchett tells the story in a simple world
      making it more accessible to younger readers..."


      Blogger vikingsinspace returns happily to The Colour of Magic:

      "I had forgotten how much attention Pratchett spent to describing
      the Discworld and explaining how it works. The stories in later
      years are so much more character driven that I have forgotten that
      these books really did start as 'typical' fantasy. That being said,
      it is still satire and very humorous. I am finding myself having a
      hard time describing all that I enjoyed about this book – Pratchett
      simply has an ability to play with the English language in such a
      way as to point out some of the silliness inherent in our


      ...and The Light Fantastic:

      "This is probably one of the more fantasy-esque of Pratchett's
      novels (even though they are all considered fantasy...) and it ends
      in a try dramatic fashion (after some typical bumbling by the
      characters to get the pronunciation of the world-saving spell
      right). I say this novel is more fantasy-esque than others, because
      it is after this novel that Pratchett seems to have a general
      satirical theme. The previous book, The Colour of Magic was
      satirizing tourism and the fantasy genre, but The Light Fantastic,
      though had satirical elements in it, did not appear to have an over-
      arching theme: just a good adventure..."


      Trainee children's author diaryofabookworm reviews A Hat Full of

      "I decided to take it easy and get back into Pratchett with A Hat
      Full of Sky, the sequel to The Wee Free Men. We're with Tiffany
      Aching again, and she's on her way to the mountains to learn
      "haggling" from a real witch, Miss Level. The book is, of course,
      peppered with Pratchett's wonderful, almost inexplicable humor...
      But aside from the humor, what makes this book so enjoyable is
      Tiffany. An 11-year-old girl who's smart, brave, clever, and
      talented, and yet still worried about boys and upset when others are
      laughing at her. I want her to succeed, I want her to get credit,
      and yet I understand when she lets things pass her by..."


      Blogger Ashley reviews Witches Abroad:

      "Witches Abroad features the fan-favorite set of characters The
      Witches, and while they're not as funny as the Night Watch, say,
      they still make me laugh quite a lot. The entire novel is basically
      a deconstruction of fairy-tales. Three witches have to prevent the
      princess from marrying the prince, and defeat the fairy-godmother,
      preventing stories from taking over the world – and they're the
      good guys... The pacing is typical Pratchett. There are no chapters,
      and the characters are thrown headlong into the action. Like many
      Discworld novels, Witches Abroad is a wacky landslide of
      inappropriate humor and clever words that gradually spirals into
      genuine emotion. It was a bit slow to start, and it didn't get quite
      real enough at the end, but otherwise, very enjoyable read.
      Pratchett is good at symmetry, and fittingly enough for a story
      about the power of stories, he understands how to work them..."


      In Baltimore Reads, blogger Monica reviews The Last Continent:

      "The Last Continent could just as easily be the first book you read
      if you desired... In reality though, the plot is not important. The
      reason I enjoy Terry Pratchett is that every book is full of satire.
      The Discworld is our world with magic and religious myths, and it
      helps point out flaws in our own logic, moral codes, and
      stereotypes. This really is my kind of book – there is character
      development and a story, but the story is not as important as the
      satire and the message (which is simply that we all need to take a
      look at ourselves and laugh)..."


      Blogger Tia reviews Going Postal (the novel):

      "Going Postal is a Discworld book, which I think is actually the
      thing that had scared me off Pratchett previously. Almost everything
      he writes is in the Discworld universe, and I had always thought
      it'd be a bit of a commitment to get into, but apparently, you can
      read the books in any which order you'd like. There might be some of
      the same characters, there might even be continuing plot, but the
      books are self-contained. I found Going Postal to be an absolutely
      delightful place to start... The characters in this book are utterly
      delightful. My favorite is probably Mr.Pump, a golem who is Moist's
      parole officer and assistant, to keep up the appearance of not being
      a criminal. Mr.Pump, being a golem, is rather matter of fact in his
      communication, and pronounces the capital letters at the beginning
      of each word... The pervasive humor is so very British in a way that
      tickled me. I enjoyed it thoroughly, and would certainly recommend
      it to any one as a way to get to know Pratchett's writing..."


      Blogger The Bookworm reviews ISWM:

      "Pratchett has done remarkable job with Tiffany, I'm not sure many
      old(er) male authors could have written a young girl so
      convincingly, but i have always enjoyed Pratchett's work and he has
      a talent for getting at what really makes people (or witches) tick.
      This book seems to round off Tiffany's story and follows on
      brilliantly from The Wintersmith with its hint of fairytale lyricism
      in the prose. Pratchett's Discworld characters often pop in and out
      of each other's books (Granny Weatherwax and Nanny Ogg have a cameo
      in this one) so we may see Tiffany again but if not it's well worth
      reading her books in order to receive the full benefit of her story.
      Pratchett himself identifies the strength of the story in these
      books and these cornerstone storylines with a touch of magic and a
      little matter of fact common sense create a wonderful modern


      Blogger Greta van der Rol takes on reviewing the Hogfather film:

      "I have to say I don't think the book translated well to the screen.
      It's just too complex and it's actually a rather dark tale. Mister
      Teatime (pronounced 'Te-ah-tim-eh') is an evil nutcase, superbly
      played, I must say, by Marc Warren in the film... Sure, there are
      some genuinely funny parts to the book. Pratchett 'gets' kids and
      the whole sitting on Santa's knee stuff, and the little 's' which is
      a shy kid's 'yes'. The notion of a real, raw wood Santa sledge drawn
      by four wild boars replacing the curly sleigh and the pink
      papier-mache pigs in the department store's Santa grotto is
      hilarious. The kids LOVE the boars, which pee on the floor,
      generally stink and scare the bejaysus out of management. And the
      notion of Death, a seven-foot skeleton with a scythe, taking over
      the Hogfather role is mind-boggling. Only TP could have come up with
      that. But while there's plenty of amusing by-play on the sides (the
      death of rats, the raven, the Cheerful Fairy, the oh-god of
      hangovers, the wizards, Ponder Stibbons and HEX etc etc at its
      heart, 'Hogfather' is a serious story with an interesting


      The Mad Hatter is back, having finished tCoM for the third time:

      "When I first set foot in Discworld, I was probably around 12 years
      old. At that time, Terry Pratchett spun a tale of whimsy and
      happiness. I took note of those things a normal 12-year-old would,
      the escape into an alternate reality that was clearly more exciting
      than our own. The second time in was just a few years later and not
      much had changed, although I do remember finding it much more
      comical than before. The interactions between Death and Rincewind
      are great. This time is took me much longer to read it than ever
      before. It wasn't that I didn't enjoy it as much as previously,
      because I did. It was because I spent about half the time reading
      and the other half thinking about a passage in the book..."


      Blogger Bodie Parkhurst gives full marks to the timeliness of the
      Going Postal DVD:

      If I hadn't read Terry Pratchett's book Going Postal way back when
      it was first published in 2005 I would have sworn the DVD I watched
      tonight was satirizing the actions of Big Business over the last few
      years... One of the things I love about the Pratchett movies is that
      they look exactly the way they should. Part of this might be that
      Pratchett is involved in the production. Part of this surely is that
      since some of the novels have been made into graphic novels the set
      designers and wardrobe people have resources from which to draw. But
      this movie has Something More, and it gets it from the context in
      which it will inevitably be watched. As I said, I read the book back
      in 2005, and enjoyed it. But as I watched the movie tonight I was
      struck by the eerie parallels with our time. Mr. Pratchett is not
      only a damned fine writer – he is apparently a prophet as well. I
      won't spoil the movie for you because you truly need to get it and
      watch it for yourself, but I will say that in writing this book Mr.
      Pratchett juggles things like bankrupt post offices, robber barons
      who operate within the letter of the law while systematically
      robbing the people they profess to serve, the role of marketing in
      shaping public opinion, and a multitude of other issues that
      apparently plague Ankh-Morpork as well as us – and he never once
      drops the ball..."


      ...and lastly, the Pratchett Podcast continues. Graeme Sheridan and
      Rhys Parton appear to live, breathe and blog all things Pratchett.

      Podcast 2, reviewing the telefilm of The Colour of Magic:


      Podcast 3, reviewing the Hogfather DVD:


      To download this episode:





      Because it never gets old...



      Rules and instructions (again) for the next Pratchett Prize:



      18) CLOSE

      Calling all Rincewinds, Lancre Witches, Watchmen, and anyone else
      with an appropriate Discworld costume! Down in Fourecks, there's a
      very special party coming up at Melbourne's beautiful State Library
      of Victoria:

      "Kick off the National Year of Reading with a tea party especially
      for book-lovers! Dress up as your favourite book character and join
      the Mad Hatter in the Library's Queen's Hall for a glorious
      celebration of books and reading. There'll be snacks and drinks
      inspired by famous books, plus performers and prizes for the best
      costume. Tickets to this free family event will be offered through
      the Library's Facebook page and Twitter feed – so become a fan and
      keep an eye out for your chance to win."

      The event will take place on Sunday 19th February 2012, 11:00am –
      1:00pm at Queen's Hall in the Library, Level 3, Main entry, Swanston
      St (has wheelchair access), and entry is free.




      And that's all from us for the moment. Still to come: your first
      monthly Discworld horoscope of 2012. Take care, and we'll see you
      next month!

      – Annie Mac


      The End. If you have any questions or requests, write:
      Copyright (c) 2012 by Klatchian Foreign Legion
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