Terry Pratchett and Rob Wilkins joined 200 fans on Saturday, Oct. 13th at Barnes and Noble in Union Square, New York City to talk about his latest book Dodger. They talked about everything from the new book to Sean Astin patiently standing in line to see him at Comic Con the day before to Terry’s current obsession with the word “lagniappe,” which means “just a bit extra.” Pratchett took questions from the audience, written on note cards. Everyone had the chance to chat with him one-on-one and Rob snapped photos of everyone.
Pratchett spoke about how he didn’t have to do much research when writing the new book because he had done so much reading earlier in his life that he just already knew most of what he needed. He also hopes to write a sequel to Dodger so that when Dodger is older, there are more great historical characters to play with.
On the subject of his book Nation, Pratchett said that it poured out of him while he was supposed to be writing something else, but it was one of those stories that if he didn’t write it, the story would kill him. Rob talked about how he wanted the book to have a happier ending, but he eventually realized that even though it isn’t a happy ending, it is a perfect ending.
They talked a little about The Watch, a TV series produced by their new production company, Narrativia. It will be a 13 episode (1 hour each episode) series that picks up the story of the A-M Watch where Snuff leaves off. Narrativia is, of course, named after the goddess of the narrative, which they have a statue for in the office and burn a candle for when Pratchett is hoping for a good narrative. When asked if Narrativia is real, Pratchett said that Yes, in a way it is because when you watch enough movies and read enough books (experience enough narratives, that is), eventually you just automatically know how stories should go.
Question: What is the most developed character you’ve written?
Answer: Sam Vimes. “A lot of Vimes is a kind of surrogate for me.”
Question: What’s the book you’re most proud of?
Answer: I Shall Wear Midnight and Nation
Question: Who is the Duck Man without the Duck?
Answer: Pratchett confessed that he’s based on the chicken man from a children’s book.
Question: Will there be another Moist novel? (Rob is always begging Pratchett for another because Moist is his favorite character.)
Answer: There is a draft done. It’s in the same stage as the second Long Earth novel. Pratchett just needs to work with it some more.
Question: How do you write humor?
Answer: Don’t be funny. Just write the story and funny will come out of the situation. Funny comes from deep within.
Question: Why did you choose to put part of The Long Earth in Madison, WI? (This was my question, since it’s my hometown.)
Answer: He chose Madison as a setting because of the interesting geology that’s relevant to the story.
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