Book release day!

The time is finally here—after months of hard work from all of our authors, In Memory: A Tribute to Sir Terry Pratchett is available for sale.  To grab your copy, check out the below: Don't forget that every penny of the proceeds goes to the fantastic charity Alzheimer's Research UK, for research into fighting dementia.Below are some of the brilliant reviews we've received for the anthology so far.  We hope you enjoy the book!...

Songs and Stories and a Million Other Things

Memories are important.   Like stories and music and just about everything else, they’re important because of the emotional attachment we apply to them. Hey, what’s your favourite song? Have you and your husband or your girlfriend ever heard a tune on the radio and said: “Hey! That’s our song!” before being swept up in a torrent of fond memories and musings and best-forgotten dance moves? Does knowing it’s someone else favourite song or that it ‘belongs’ to a million other couples make it any less unique or special to you?   Nope.   Because the memories conjured by the melodies and the lyrics are yours and yours alone, and that’s what separates it from every other song out there.   Terry Pratchett knew that Death was coming for him. He knew that he was in the grip of Alzheimer’s and he tackled it with the strength, nobility and...

And now, for a story

My uncle had Alzheimers. (Get back here, I’ll be quick!) Waaaay back then it wasn’t called Alzheimers or dementia. We brushed it off as him just being silly. He would call up his brother-in-law and talk about past events as if it happened yesterday. I remember once he took a night bus to another state, but due to a comedy of errors he ended up back home. At the bus station, he called my aunt and said, “Wow, this town is totally like home! You should see it! Look, it even has the same coffee shop!” It took him a run-in with a friend to realise where he was, and it became a story we’d laugh over during family reunions. Then in 2009-2010, my aunt suddenly passed away in her sleep. My dad headed to Terengganu for the funeral (aunt was my dad’s sister). In the church, my dad...

Yesterday’s gone (and so are all the other days)

The phrase “I remember it like it was yesterday” becomes somewhat meaningless when you realise that yesterday, like every other day since the beginning of time, is gone forever – and therefore can’t be easily referred to for a quick fact-check. One of the first things they teach you when you become a copper (or so I am told) is to take eyewitness accounts with a generous helping of salt. This goes double for witnesses to an event that was both entirely unexpected and began and ended within an extremely short space of time. This can be largely explained through the concept of schematic thinking – an idea that fascinated me in sixth form psychology, and which I shall now explain to you in what is probably a mangled and misinterpreted manner so heaving with irony, it just might melt my laptop. A schema is sort of like one...

How and Where I Write

How and where I write Jane Austen wrote by hand on small sheets of paper hiding them if anyone came into the room. Anthony Trollope paid his manservant to call him at 5.30am so he could get in three hours writing before he left home for his day job. Proust wrote in a cork lined room and J G Ballard in a nondescript suburban house. I have a friend who composes her best work in coffee shops, because she doesn’t like the silence at home. I am lucky in having a study. I type at an old table with a Formica top. On it sits my principal tool, an iMac with a 27” screen. Why so big? Because I can have three A4 equivalent pages displayed at a time, making moving between documents, or parts of the same document easy. I can have my browser open on one side...

On memories and doors

Last Friday, I printed my almost finished story and put it on the table for my parents to read. It caused my dad to stay up later than he’d planned to, which I’m taking as a good sign. The next morning at breakfast he told me that the story reminded him of something I used to say as a kid. Whenever I was unsuccessfully trying to remember something, I’d say that it was somewhere behind a little door in my head, but I couldn’t find the right door. Now I’m not going to tell you what exactly the similarity to my story is; for that you’ll have to buy the book when it comes out. But it’s definitely there, which is funny because I’d forgotten about that particular anecdote. Who knows? Maybe I did unconsciously base the story on that idea. Memories are strange things. For example: the only...

School to desired temperature: Mr Lanaway

Welcome ye to my third and final post about the three teachers who have most influenced/damaged me. I’ve sort of made it a series of episodic posts so that a) after the first one you know that they’re related, and kind of what to expect; and b) after the first one, you can just look at the title and know to avoid the other two without the hassle of clicking through to read the whole thing. I’ve just realised that I have, unintentionally, written about these three in ascending order of age. Mr Moody was in his mid to late twenties; Mrs Bradley was in her late thirties; and Mr Lanaway was in his sixties. I know this for certain because he retired months before we were finished with him, and we all missed him dearly. Dear Mr Lanaway. He wasn’t young by anybody’s standards, and so to a...

The Who and Why

Hi! My name is Michael, nice to meet you. You have found this blog, so you must love stories – I know we’ll get along just fine. As this is my first post in the blog, I think it makes sense to write about why I’m contributing to this anthology. Writing this post is a bit daunting considering the brilliant ones that have already been posted, but I’ll do my best. Feel free to stop reading it if you get bored. Do something fun instead. I heard that there are lots of interesting things out there on the internet, maybe you could go exploring. Or you could pick up your favourite book and reread (rereread, rerereread, …) it. I promise I don’t mind. You are still reading? Are you sure? Ok, so here goes nothing. I found out about the anthology in the May edition of Discworld Monthly, which...

My first post

My name is Charlotte.  It’s probably too early in my life to ask me who and what I expect to be in 10 years time because I honestly don’t know. But for now I’m going to tell you about what I love. Writing. It’s that simple. I love writing and how it makes me feel like I understand the world a little bit better if I can describe something as simple as a flower. What I also love about writing is that so many people have done it before me. For as long as people have had the words to articulate it we have had stories and I think they show something fundamentally beautiful in the human race. We all want our lives known, our stories told. Who can talk about storytelling in the modern day without mentioning films? I think they are a fantastic new medium in which...

School to desired temperature: Mrs Bradley

Last time, after the obligatory waffle, I told you about the most significant memories I have of my English teacher Mr Moody. Now, let me do the same for the memories I have of Mrs Bradley. Nothing about buttocks this time, sorry. Mrs Bradley was what any good teacher – in fact, what any good person– should be; identifiably human. Mr Moody’s One Of The Lads approach worked perfectly for him, never to the detriment of his job, and is largely why I shall remember him forever. Mrs Bradley on the other hand struck a miraculously perfect tone between friend and mentor. She must have been more than twice the age of the oldest of us, but could talk and listen like your best friend. Nonetheless, if anybody tried to take advantage of this, it was always immediately clear that she put our education above her desire for us...

In Memory: A Tribute to Sir Terry Pratchett