Terry Pratchett (tpratchett) Fri 13 Jul 01 14:27
rab, >I loaned copies of _Witches Abroad_ and _Lords And Ladies_ to some >wiccan (neo-pagan) friends and have seen neither since. Yeah, it's been said that every DW collection begins with a stolen book! I don't know about skewering perceptions. What perceptions did you think got skewered?
Clotilde - Dodge (hnowell) Fri 13 Jul 01 14:33
I took a couple of paperback books (Pyramids and Small Gods) to a White Elephant giveaway at the office during Christmas. I'd acquired the hardback of them and didn't need the paperback any more. THe lady who got them was unhappy to get a couple of "used" books. Then a couple of weeks later, she started asking around the office to see who brought them because she gave them to her teenaged daughter who liked them so much she convinced her to read them and they wanted to know more about you and your books. Hah. I started reading your books when I accidentally got Hogfather from Science Fiction Book Club when I forgot to send a card in. It looked interesting... and the rest, as they say, is history. Now I have a deal with a bookstore in England to send me your new books as soon as they come out. Slippage again It's hard to think how much better they could have been. Although, having read recently your Dark Side of the Sun... I can see the improvement. Not a bad book as SF goes but certainly not in the class of your Discworld or other later books. Slippage - Hey! Welcome to my neck of the woods, Terry. Now, let's see, I have this here LIST of questions but I promise to ask only one each post... First - What's the news, if any, on the movie for Good Omens?
Bob 'rab' Bickford (rab) Fri 13 Jul 01 14:33
Oh, perhaps I'm phrasing it badly. I just thought that, e.g., LaL did a great job of turning the notion of elves as benign and wonderful beings right on its head -- and for apparently excellent reasons. And _Witches_ struck me the same way somehow, although now I can't recall specifics.... (yes, I have a mind like a steel sieve...)
Paper - The Undead Medium (jerod23) Fri 13 Jul 01 14:51
Mr. Pratchett: In Thief of Time, do the Yetis speak with Welsh accents, or am I just misreading something?
Terry Pratchett (tpratchett) Fri 13 Jul 01 15:33
Clotilda, >First - What's the news, if any, on the movie for Good Omens? We understand Terry Gilliam has got a script he's happy with. And that's it, unless Neil has heard something I haven't. As I hope everybody knows, we're keeping out of this, except maybe we'll sneak around when it's being shot and steal some of the props. Neil would like the burning Bentley, I'd like Death's mototcycle. It's amazing the ways people begin reading DW...
Terry Pratchett (tpratchett) Fri 13 Jul 01 15:35
>In Thief of Time, do the Yetis speak with Welsh >accents Damn, I hope not! I wanted a long-drawn-out feel to their, like a cross between very slow Swedish and a yawn!
Jeff Kramer (jeffk) Fri 13 Jul 01 15:39
Terry, It truly is an honor for you to grace us with your presence. I've been reading the Discworld books since I ran across Eric, The Colour of Magic, and Witches Abroad (I think, it's been a while) on the shelves of my public library. They had more, but the books never seemed to stay on the shelves long enough for me to nab them. Our local used book store had a few more, but I finally gave in an ordered a bunch from Amazon.com. (And then amazon.co.uk when I'd read all of the ones that had been released in the US.) I've noticed that it seems that the later books in the series are more focused than the earlier books. That is, more things happen in the earlier books, but the later books seem to have more character development. Is this my imagination, or was it more of a conscious development in writing style?
Terry Pratchett (tpratchett) Fri 13 Jul 01 15:52
Rab, Really, I just started from basics. Three witches is a given -- the Maiden, the Mother and the Crone. And then I tried to do it *with real people*, or as real as I could make them. They don't *do* witchcraft, it's simply part of what they are. In Thief of Time I developed the term 'edge witches' which is how they see themselves. They stand with people at those places where 'everyday life' meets the unknown and dangerous. That's their job. The elves in CJ were rather closer to *some* of the real elves of these islands, although I've made them a little nastier.
Terry Pratchett (tpratchett) Fri 13 Jul 01 16:05
Jeff, Thank you. I don't think you're wrong. There's a lot of reasons for the change, I think, but they boil down to the fact that now I'm a better writer. You can only write linked gags for so long -- sooner or later you have to work at it. Besides, if you get the characters right, they get down and do a lot of the job for you.
With catlike tread (sumac) Fri 13 Jul 01 16:51
Terry, my father comments: It seems to me that you abandoned the teenage girl wizard shown in Equal Rites. Did you know when you wrote it that you would have to abandon her in order to keep the Unseen University on track?
With catlike tread (sumac) Fri 13 Jul 01 16:53
He adds: I like the theme of rivalry between Fate and The Lady and hope for more of it.
Howard Rheingold (hlr) Fri 13 Jul 01 19:02
What does it mean that American television has not broadcast Truckers?
Terry Pratchett (tpratchett) Sat 14 Jul 01 01:43
>It seems to me that you abandoned the teenage girl wizard shown in >Equal Rites. Did you know when you wrote it that you would have to >abandon her in order to keep the Unseen University on track? Well, who knows what happened next? Especially with history being fractured and everything (Get Out Of Jail Free Clause.) But I have plans for Esk. The rivalry...well, yes, I like to keep it up. But in a way the rivalry is the background to just about every DW book. Terry
Terry Pratchett (tpratchett) Sat 14 Jul 01 01:51
Howard >What does it mean that American television has not broadcast >Truckers? If you are American, you tell me. It's been broadcast just about everywhere else. It might be because it's quite intelligent and gentle and you can't use it to sell plastic models to kids. But it's no good expecting a reason for anything any TV does. The Wyrd Sisters animation went on at teatime on a Sunday and got a big audience. Flushed by this success, C4 eventually put the Soul Music one on at 2am. That's why there's no more -- I said it wasn't any good the animators doing wonderful work if some grey-faced dreebs mess things up with the scheduling. Terry
Neil Gaiman (neilgaiman) Sat 14 Jul 01 08:55
Terry -- no, I've no more news on the Good Omens film. I thought I'd ring T. Gilliam and ask him what was happening before I started the current signing tour, as I knew it would come up in every Q&A, but he was inconsiderately off judging the Cannes Film Festival. (I'm typing this in a cyber cafe in Canterbury; just eight teenage boys making things blow up on their screens, and me. That's technology, that is.)
With catlike tread (sumac) Sat 14 Jul 01 11:12
Speaking of grey-faced dreebs and gray-faced dreebs, have the DW books been edited at all for the American market, as the Harry Potter books were?
Terry Pratchett (tpratchett) Sat 14 Jul 01 11:14
>Terry -- no, I've no more news on the Good Omens film. I *like* having no more news. If it doesn't happen, I won't be disappointed, and if it does it'll be like getting a great big present. No 7 on the bestseller list in the Indy today (I think that's a Waterstones-supplied list.) Well done... Terry
Terry Pratchett (tpratchett) Sat 14 Jul 01 11:22
Catlike treader... They haven't since the Big Change, and I don't think anyone bothered before that. There is a certain amount of creative argument but in DW, now, Britishisms are seen as 'texture'. It was interesting working with the editor/copy-editor on Maurice, though. The book is technically YA, so I think there is an argument for *some* changes and, oh boy, we had that argument. In fact it was all pretty civilised -- Anne Hoppe, the editor, really took an interest, and I think we ended up with something good. I was working with the US and UK copy-editors at the same time. It made for a few strange weeks. Terry
Linda Castellani (castle) Sat 14 Jul 01 11:54
E-mail from Catherine Young: Hi, I have two questions for Mr Pratchett: "Terry, your website www.turtlesalltheway.com has been under construction for about a year - what do you plan to do with it, and when might you find the time to do it (no rush, no rush!) And, we all have favourite Discworld books for reading. Which was your favourite one to write, and why?" Thanks, Cathy
Jeff Kramer (jeffk) Sat 14 Jul 01 11:57
Blast, that was sort of my question! Oh well, I'll ask it anyway. Are there any characters that you've written about that are your favorites?
Terry Pratchett (tpratchett) Sat 14 Jul 01 12:26
>Terry, your website www.turtlesalltheway.com has been under >construction for about a year - what do you plan to do with it, and >when might you find the time to do it (no rush, no rush!) What? You have to *do* things? We're planning to get that site up RSN, yes indeed...but I'm not planning anything major, just news items, tour details, maybe an on-line diary. We're hoping to have something up by the end of September. The reality is that the site is waiting for some spare time which I never seem to have... >And, we all have favourite Discworld books for reading. Which was >your favourite one to write, and why?" Probably Men At Arms, because it just flowed. But you know what I'm going to say: every book I've done has certain high notes in my memory. Every book is the favourite while it's being written, in any case.
Terry Pratchett (tpratchett) Sat 14 Jul 01 12:33
Jeff, Oh, Vimes and Granny Weatherwax. Because they are screwed-up characters, self-tapping screws at that. They just wrap plot around themselves. Characters full of doubt and uncertaintly are always useful to the writer. But I'm beginning to enjoy writing for Susan because of her sheer implacable 'common sense', even though it's tricky writing for a character who is a lot brighter than the author! Terry
Rafe Colburn (rafeco) Sat 14 Jul 01 12:35
As a fellow author (I write computer books, not novels), I'm a bit surprised and glad to hear you say that every book is your favorite as you write it. It certainly explains how you've managed to be so prolific without burning out completely. Every book I've written has started out as my favorite, but by the time I send in that last chapter, it's generally reviled beyond compare.
With catlike tread (sumac) Sat 14 Jul 01 12:37
Talking of words flowing, it is true that more than half of Equal Rites was written in one sitting? (I am all in favor of "texture," even though I lost the fight with my sixth-grade teacher over whether "theatre" was a legitimate spelling. On an American spelling test.)
Linda Castellani (castle) Sat 14 Jul 01 12:40
For a split-second there, I was so happy to hear you say, "But I'm beginning to enjoy writing for Susan" because, of course, I thought you were referring to <sumac>. Wrong Susan, alas.
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