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08 Personal history (Terry Pratchett)




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This article is from the Pratchett Newsgroups FAQ, by Orin Thomas orin@lspace.org with numerous contributions by others.

08 Personal history (Terry Pratchett)

"People never read these biographies anyway, do they? They want to
get on with the book, not wade through masses of prose designed to
suggest that the author is really a very interesting person so look,
okay, he wrote these other books, all right. Most were also about the
Discworld, and actually quite a lot of people liked them."

- From the "About the Author" section of the
earlier Discworld books.

Terry Pratchett is, on average, a sort of youngish middle-aged.
He was born on the 28th of April in 1948 in the village of Forty Green
(now a part of Beaconsfield, Buckinghamshire) and is still not dead.

He lives in the west country with his wife Lyn and daughter Rhianna
where he writes books in between answering the mail. He lives in
constant dread that someone will find out how enjoyable he finds
writing, and stop him doing it.

He chose journalism as a career because it was indoor work with no
heavy lifting. He's managed to avoid all the really interesting jobs
authors take in order to look good in this sort of biography.
He started work as a journalist one day in 1965 and saw his first
corpse three hours later, work experience meaning something in
those days. After doing just about every job it's possible to do in
provincial journalism, except of course covering Saturday afternoon
football, he joined the Central Electricity Generating Board and
became press officer for four nuclear power stations just before
Three Mile Island, which shows his unerring sense of timing.

He'd write a book about his experiences if he thought anyone would
believe it. All this came to an end in 1987 when it became obvious
that the Discworld series was much more enjoyable than real work.
Occasionally he gets accused of literature. He says writing is the
most fun anyone can have by themselves.

He grows carnivorous (which, he argues, are really insectivorious)
plants as a hobby (which are doing quite well by the way) and tells
us that they are a lot less interesting than people believe. He likes
people to buy him banana daiquiris (he knows people don't read author
biographies, but feels this might be worth a try). He tries to make
computers do things they were never intended to do. He also feels that
the world could use more orang-utans.

He has a two speed Hedge Cutter and there is no truth to the rumor that
he likes being presented with Dried Frog Pills. Someone's father once
sold him a carrot.

 

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