Terry Pratchett

(1948 – 2015)

Terry PratchettBiographical Sketch

Sir Terence David John Pratchett OBE (Beaconsfield, Bucks., UK, April 28, 1948 – Broad Chalke, Wilts., UK, March, 12 2015) was an English humorist, satirist, and author of fantasy novels, especially comical works.  He is best known for his Discworld series of 41 novels.

Pratchett’s first novel, The Carpet People, was published in 1971. The first Discworld novel, The Colour of Magic, was published in 1983, after which Pratchett wrote an average of two books a year. The final Discworld novel, The Shepherd’s Crown, was published in August 2015, five months after his death.

Pratchett, with more than 85 million books sold worldwide in 37 languages, was the UK’s best-selling author of the 1990s.  He was appointed Officer of the Order of the British Empire (OBE) in 1998 and was knighted for services to literature in the 2009 New Year Honours.[  In 2001 he won the annual Carnegie Medal for The Amazing Maurice and his Educated Rodents, the first Discworld book marketed for children.  He received the World Fantasy Award for Life Achievement in 2010.[

In December 2007, Pratchett announced that he had been diagnosed with early-onset Alzheimer’s disease.  He later made a substantial public donation to the Alzheimer’s Research Trust, filmed a television programme chronicling his experiences with the condition for the BBC, and became a patron for Alzheimer’s Research UK.  Pratchett died on 12 March 2015, aged 66.

Read more about Terry Pratchett on Wikipedia.

 

Major Awards and Honors

Order of the British Empire
  • 1998: Officer
  • 2009: Knight Commander
British Book Awards
  • 1994: Fantasy and Science Fiction Author of the Year
Society of Authors (UK)
  • 1994-95: Chairman
British Science Fiction Association
  • 1989: British Science Fiction Award, Best Novel – “Pyramids”
Chartered Institute of Library and Information Professionals (UK)
  • 2001: Carnegie Medal – “The Amazing Maurice and His Educated Rodents”
    – Year’s best children’s book published in the UK.
BBC
  • 2003: The Big Read, Top 100 – “Mort” (No. 65)
  • 2003: The Big Read, Top 100 – 5 books in Top 100
    – Only author besides Charles Dickens.
  • 2003: The Big Read, Top 200 – 15 books in Top 200
    – More than any other author.
  • 2011: BBC 1 Dimbleby Lecturer
    – Lecture read by his friend Tony Robinson.
University of Warwick (UK)
  • 1999: Honorary D.Litt.
Winchester University (UK)
  • 2009: Honorary D.Litt.
University of Bath (UK)
  • 2003: Honorary D.Litt.
University of Bristol (UK)
  • 2004: Honorary D.Litt.
University of Porsmouth (UK)
  • 2001: Honorary D.Litt.
Bradford University (UK)
  • 2009: Honorary D.Litt.
Buckinghamshire New University (UK)
  • 2008: Honorary D.Litt.
Open University (UK)
  • 2013: Honorary Doctor of the University
British Humanist Association
  • 2013: Humanist of the Year Award
World Fantasy Convention
  • 2010: World Fantasy Award – Life Achievement
Trinity College Dublin (Ireland)
  • 2008: Honorary D.Litt.
  • 2010: Adjunct Professor in the School of English
American Library Association
  • 2011: Margaret A. Edwards Award – “The Colour of Magic”, “Equal Rites”, “Mort”, “Guards! Guards!”, “Small Gods”, “The Amazing Maurice and His Educated Rodents”, “The Wee Free Men”, “A Hat Full of Sky”, “Going Postal”
Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers of America
  • 2011: Andre Norton Award for Young Adult Science Fiction and Fantasy – “I Shall Wear Midnight”
  • 2016: Kate Wilhelm Solstice Award
    – Lifetime achievement award.
Locus Awards (USA)
  • 2004: Best Young Adult Book – “The Wee Free Men”
  • 2005: Best Young Adult Book – “A Hat Full of Sky”
  • 2007: Best Young Adult Book – “Wintersmith”
  • 2008: Best Fantasy Novel – “Making Money”
  • 2016: Best Young Adult Book – “The Shepherd’s Crown”
New England Science Fiction Association (USA)
  • 2009: Edward E. Smith Memorial Award for Imaginative Fiction (Skylark Award)
Libertarian Futurist Society (USA)
  • 2003: Prometeus Award – “Nigiht Watch”
    – Year’s best science fiction novel promoting individual freedom published in the United States.
NASA
  • 2002: Discovery / confirmation of Main Belt asteroid named 127005 Pratchett (diameter: 1.224 km).
University of South Australia
  • 2014: Honorary D.Litt.

 

Bibliography

Discworld
The Novels
  • The Colour of Magic (1983)
    – Rincewind #1; also publlished as a graphic novel.
  • The Light Fantastic (1986)
    –  Rincewind #2; also publlished as a graphic novel.
  • Equal Rites (1987)
    – Witches #1
  • Mort (1987)
    – Death #1; also publlished as a graphic novel.
  • Sourcery (1988)
    – Rincewind #3
  • Wyrd Sisters (1988)
    – Witches #2
  • Pyramids (1989)
    – Djelibeybi
  • Guards! Guards! (1989)
    – City Watch #1; also publlished as a graphic novel.
  • Eric (1990)
    – Rincewind #4
  • Moving Pictures (1990)
    – Industrial Revolution #1
  • Reaper Man (1991)
    – Death #2
  • Witches Abroad (1991)
    – Witches #3
  • Small Gods (1992)
    – Omnia; also publlished as a graphic novel.
  • Lords and Ladies (1992)
    – Witches #4
  • Theatre of Cruelty (1993)
    – City Watch #1.5
  • Men at Arms (1993)
    – City Watch #2
  • Soul Music (1994)
    – Death #3
  • Interesting Times (1994)
    – Rincewind #5
  • Maskerade (1995)
    – Witches #5
  • Feet of Clay (1996)
    – City Watch #3
  • Hogfather  (1996)
    – Death #4
  • Jingo (1997)
    – City Watch #4
  • The Last Continent (1998)
    – Rincewind #6
  • The Sea and Little Fishes  (1998)
    – Witches #5.5
  • Carpe Jugulum (1998)
    – Witches #6
  • The Fifth Elephant (1999)
    – City Watch #5
  • The Truth (2000)
    – Industrial Revolution #2
  • Thief of Time (2001)
    – Death #5
  • The Last Hero (2001)
    – Rincewind #7
  • The Amazing Maurice and His Educated Rodents (2001)
    – Überwald
  • Night Watch (2002)
    – City Watch #6
  • Death and What Comes Next (2002)
    – Death #1.5
  • The Wee Free Men (2003)
    – Tiffany Aching #1
  • Monstrous Regiment (2003)
    – Industrial Revolution #3
  • A Hat Full of Sky (2004)
    – Tiffany Aching #2
  • Going Postal (2004)
    – Moist von Lipwig #1
  • Thud! (2005)
    – City Watch #7
  • Where’s My Cow? (2005)
    – City Watch #7.5
  • Wintersmith (2006)
    – Tiffany Aching #3
  • Making Money (2007)
    – Moist von Lipwig #2
  • Unseen Academicals (2009)
    – Rincewind #8
  • I Shall Wear Midnight (2010)
    – Tiffany Aching #4
  • Snuff (2011)
    – City Watch #8
  • The World of Poo (2012)
    – City Watch #8.5
  • Raising Steam (2013)
    – Moist von Lipwig #3
  • The Shepherd’s Crown (2015)
    – Published posthumously; Tiffany Aching #5.
The Science of Discworld

– With Ian Stewart and Jack Cohen.

  • The Science of The Discworld (1999)
  • The Science of the Discworld II The Globe (2002)
  • The Science of the Discworld III Darwins Watch (2005)
  • The Science of the Discworld IV Judgement Day (2013)
Other Discworld Companion Books
  • The Discworld Companion (1994)
    – Encyclopedia of Discworld information; with Stephen Briggs.
  • The Discworld Portfolio (1996)
    – Paul Kidby’s artwork; with notes by Pratchett.
  • Terry Pratchett’s Discworld Quizbook: The Unseen University Challenge (1996)
    – Foreword by Pratchett.
  • Nanny Ogg’s Cookbook (1999)
    – Discworld recipes, combined with etiquette, language of flowers etc.; with Stephen Briggs and Tina Hannan.
  • A Terry Pratchett Discworld Quizbook: The Wyrdest Link (2002)
    – Foreword by Pratchett.
  • The New Discworld Companion (2003)
    – Updated edition of the 1994 Discworld Companion.
  • The Art of Discworld (2004)
    – Second collection of Paul Kidby’s art.
  • The Discworld Almanak (2004)
    – Almanac for the Discworld year, in the style of the Diaries and the Cookbook; with Bernard Pearson.
  • Where’s My Cow? (2005)
    – Discworld picture book referenced in Thud! and Wintersmith; illustrations by Melvyn Grant.
  • The Unseen University Cut Out Book (2006)
    – Build your own Unseen University; with Alan Batley and Bernard Pearson.
  • The Wit and Wisdom of Discworld (2007)
    – Quotations from the series.
  • The Folklore of Discworld (2008)
    – Collaboration with British folklorist Jacqueline Simpson, discussing the myths and folklore used in Discworld. Republished and updated to Unseen Academicals in 2009 and to Raising Steam in 2014.
  • Turtle Recall: The Discworld Companion … So Far (2012)
    – Further updated edition of the Discworld Companion (originally published in 1994).
  • The World of Poo (2012)
    – In-universe children’s book (similar to Where’s My Cow), referenced in Snuff.
  • The Compleat Ankh-Morpork: City Guide (2012
  • Guide to the city of Ankh-Morpork.
  • Mrs Bradshaw’s Handbook (2014)
  • The Discworld Atlas (2015)
Other Novels
The Long Earth Series

– With Stephen Baxter.

  • The Long Earth (2012)
  • The Long War (2013)
  • The Long Mars (2014)
  • The Long Utopia (2015)
  • The Long Cosmos (2016)
Non-Series Novels
  • The Dark Side of the Sun (1976)
  • Strata (1981)
  • Good Omens (1990)
    – With Neil Gaiman.
Short Fiction
  • “#ifdefDEBUG + “world/enough” + “time” (1990)
    – In: Digital Dreams, edited by David V Barrett.
  • Troll Bridge (1992)
    – Discworld story; in: After the King: Stories In Honour of J.R.R. Tolkien, edited by Martin H. Greenberg, and in The Mammoth Book of Comic Fantasy (2001), edited by Mike Ashley.
  • The Secret Book of the Dead (1994)
    Poem; in: Now We Are Sick by Neil Gaiman and Stephen Jones.
  • Theatre of Cruelty (1996)
    Discworld short story; in: The Wizards of Od, edited by Peter Haining.
  • Turntables of the Night (1997)
    In: The Flying Sorcerers, edited by Peter Haining.
  • Hollywood Chickens (1998)
    In: Knights of Madness, edited by Peter Haining.
  • The Sea and Little Fishes (1998)
    In: Legends, edited by Robert Silverberg
  • Once More* With Footnotes (2004)
    Edited by Priscilla Olson and Sheila M. Perry; short stories, nonfiction articles, introductions, and ephemera by Pratchett, including:

    • The Sea and Little Fishies
    • Troll Bridge
    • The Hades Business
    • Final Reward, Hollywood Chickens
    • Turntables of the Night, Once and Future
    • “#ifdef DEBUG” + “world/enough” + “time”
  • A Blink of the Screen (2012)
    – Pratchett’s collected short fiction.
Childrens’ and Young Adult Fiction
Johnny Maxwell Series
  • Only You can Save Mankind (1992)
  • Johnny and the Dead (1993)
  • Johnny and the Bomb (1996)
Nome Trilogy (aka Bromeliad Trilogy)
  • Truckers (1988)
  • Diggers (1990)
  • Wings (1990)
Non-Series Books
  • The Carpet People (1971)
    – Substantially rewritten and republished in 1992.
  • Nation (2008)
  • Dodger (2012)
  • Jack Dodger’s Guide to London (2013)
  • Dragons at Crumbling Castle (2014)
    – Story collection.
  • The Witch’s Vacuum Cleaner (2016)
    – Story collection; published posthumously.
  • Father Christmas’s Fake Beard (2017)
    – Story collection; published posthumously.
  • The Time-Travelling Caveman (2020)
    – Story collection; published posthumously.
Nonfiction
  • The Unadulterated Cat (1989)
    – Humorous cat anecdotes; illustrated by Gray Jolliffe.
  • Foreword to The Ultimate Encyclopedia of Fantasy, edited by David Pringle (1998)
  • Foreword to The Leaky Establishment by David Langford
    – Book originally published in 1984; Pratchett’s foreword appears in reissues as from 2001.
  • Cult Classic (2002)
    – Contained in Meditations on Middle-Earth (anthology of essays on Middle Earth), compiled by Karen Haber.
  • Shaking Hands With Death (2010)
    – BBC Richard Dimbleby Lecture.
  • A Slip of the Keyboard (2014)
    – Collected nonfiction.

 

A Selection of Quotes

Hogfather

“‘All right,’ said Susan. ‘I’m not stupid. You’re saying humans need … fantasies to make life bearable.’
REALLY? AS IF IT WAS SOME KIND OF PINK PILL? NO. HUMANS NEED FANTASY TO BE HUMAN. TO BE THE PLACE WHERE THE FALLING ANGEL MEETS THE RISING APE.
‘Tooth fairies? Hogfathers? Little –’
YES. AS PRACTICE. YOU HAVE TO START OUT LEARNING TO BELIEVE THE LITTLE LIES.
‘So we can believe the big ones?’
YES. JUSTICE. MERCY. DUTY. THAT SORT OF THING.
‘They’re not the same at all!’
YOU THINK SO? THEN TAKE THE UNIVERSE AND GRIND IT DOWN TO THE FINEST POWDER AND SIEVE IT THROUGH THE FINEST SIEVE AND THEN SHOW ME ONE ATOM OF JUSTICE, ONE MOLECULE OF MERCY. AND YET – Death waved a hand. AND YET YOU ACT AS IF THERE IS SOME IDEAL ORDER IN THE WORLD, AS IF THERE IS SOME … SOME RIGHTNESS IN THE UNIVERSE BY WHICH IT MAY BE JUDGED.
‘Yes, but people have got to believe that, or what’s the point –’
MY POINT EXACTLY.”

“Real stupidity beats artificial intelligence every time.”

Mort

“‘It would seem that you have no useful skill or talent whatsoever,’ he said. ‘Have you thought of going into teaching?'”

Reaper Man

“Light thinks it travels faster than anything but it is wrong. No matter how fast light travels, it finds the darkness has always got there first, and is waiting for it.”

“Five exclamation marks, the sure sign of an insane mind.”

“Just because something is a metaphor doesn’t mean it can’t be real.”

Equal Rites

“She knew a cutting, incisive, withering and above all a self-evident answer existed. It was just that, to her extreme annoyance, she couldn’t quite bring it to mind.”

“She’d struck Esk once before – the blow a baby gets to introduce it to the world and give it a rough idea of what to expect from life.”

Wyrd Sisters

“‘I hate cats.’
Death’s face became a little stiffer, if that were possible. The blue glow in his eye sockets flickered red for an instant.
‘I SEE,’ he said. The tone suggested that death was too good for cat haters.”

“Granny Weatherwax was not lost. She wasn’t the kind of person who ever became lost. It was just that, at the moment, while she knew exactly where SHE was, she didn’t know the position of anywhere else.”

“Only in our dreams are we free. The rest of the time we need wages.”

“It is true that words have power, and one of the things they are able to do is get out of someone’s mouth before the speaker has the chance to stop them.”

“Humans had built a world inside the world, which reflected it in pretty much the same way as a drop of water reflected the landscape. And yet … and yet …
Inside this little world they had taken pains to put all the things you might think they would want to escape from – hatred, fear, tyranny, and so forth. Death was intrigued. They thought they wanted to be taken out of themselves, and every art humans dreamt up took them further *in*. He was fascinated.”

“Everywhere’s been where it is ever since it was first put there. It’s called geography.”

“I reckon responsible behavior is something to get when you grow older. Like varicose veins.”

“This is Art holding a Mirror up to Life. That’s why everything is exactly the wrong way around.”

“She’d never mastered the talent for apologizing, but she appreciated it in other people.”

“Granny’s implicit belief that everything should get out of her way extended to other witches, very tall trees and, on occasion, mountains.”

Lords and Ladies

“In the beginning there was nothing, which exploded.”

“‘I don’t hold with paddlin’ with the occult,’ said Granny firmly. ‘Once you start paddlin’ with the occult you start believing in spirits, and when you start believing in spirits you start believing in demons, and then before you know where you are you’re believing in gods. And then you’re in trouble.’
‘But all them things exist,’ said Nanny Ogg.
‘That’s no call to go around believing in them. It only encourages ’em.'”

A Hat Full of Sky

“She strode across the moors as if distance was a personal insult.”

Guards! Guards!

“A good bookshop is just a genteel Black Hole that knows how to read.”

Night Watch

“‘No! Please! I’ll tell you whatever you want to know!’ the man yelled.
‘Really?’ said Vimes. ‘What’s the orbital velocity of the moon?’
‘What?’
‘Oh, you’d like something simpler?'”

Men at Arms

“The reason that the rich were so rich, Vimes reasoned, was because they managed to spend less money.
Take boots, for example. He earned thirty-eight dollars a month plus allowances. A really good pair of leather boots cost fifty dollars. But an affordable pair of boots, which were sort of OK for a season or two and then leaked like hell when the cardboard gave out, cost about ten dollars. Those were the kind of boots Vimes always bought, and wore until the soles were so thin that he could tell where he was in Ankh-Morpork on a foggy night by the feel of the cobbles.
But the thing was that good boots lasted for years and years. A man who could afford fifty dollars had a pair of boots that’d still be keeping his feet dry in ten years’ time, while the poor man who could only afford cheap boots would have spent a hundred dollars on boots in the same time and would still have wet feet.
This was the Captain Samuel Vimes ‘Boots’ theory of socioeconomic unfairness.”

Monstrous Regiment

“The presence of those seeking the truth is infinitely to be preferred to the presence of those who think they’ve found it.”

The Colour of Magic

“Some pirates achieved immortality by great deeds of cruelty or derring-do. Some achieved immortality by amassing great wealth. But the captain had long ago decided that he would, on the whole, prefer to achieve immortality by not dying.”

“You can’t map a sense of humor. Anyway, what is a fantasy map but a space beyond which There Be Dragons? On the Discworld we know that There Be Dragons Everywhere. They might not all have scales and forked tongues, but they Be Here all right, grinning and jostling and trying to sell you souvenirs.”

The Light Fantastic

“The universe, they say, depended for its operation on the balance of four forces which they identified as charm, persuasion, uncertainty, and bloody-mindedness.”

Sourcery

“‘I meant,’ said Ipslore bitterly, ‘what is there in this world that truly makes living worthwhile?’
Death thought about it.
CATS, he said eventually. CATS ARE NICE.”

“‘And what would humans be without love?’
RARE, said Death.”

Good Omens

“Most books on witchcraft will tell you that witches work naked. This is because most books on witchcraft were written by men.”

“It may help to understand human affairs to be clear that most of the great triumphs and tragedies of history are caused, not by people being fundamentally good or fundamentally bad, but by people being fundamentally people.”

“DON’T THINK OF IT AS DYING, said Death. JUST THINK OF IT AS LEAVING EARLY TO AVOID THE RUSH.”

“God does not play dice with the universe; He plays an ineffable game of His own devising, which might be compared, from the perspective of any of the other players [i.e. everybody], to being involved in an obscure and complex variant of poker in a pitch-dark room, with blank cards, for infinite stakes, with a Dealer who won’t tell you the rules, and who smiles all the time.”

“The future came and went in the mildly discouraging way that futures do.”

“If you stopped tellin’ people it’s all sorted out after they’re dead, they might try sorting it all out while they’re alive.”

Find more quotes by Terry Pratchett on Wikiquote and Goodreads.

 

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