Apr 18, 2011

O is for Observing Outstanding Writers

O is also for the Opera House in Sydney. Emily and I headed there yesterday to see author Garth Nix interview mega-author Sir Terry Pratchett. OMG.

Apparently the Concert Hall seats 2,679 people, and it looked pretty darn full. Emily commented she'd never seen that many people before, that there were more people in that hall than in the whole of our hometown (Gross hyperbole Emily, there are at least 5,000 people living in Yass).

During the talk, Sir Pratchett's wonderful reader shared a section of his newest book in the Discworld series, Snuff. Emily and I only recently discovered Discworld, but, while we are about 30+ books behind Snuff, we still can not wait until it is released later this year. It was hilarious!

Although the talk was for just over an hour, I felt I gained a lot of insight into successful writing from Sir Pratchett. Here are just a few snippets I'd like to share:
  • Terry Pratchett has FUN writing. It is obvious that he delves right into his fantasy world he has created and adores his own characters (or adores to torture them).
  • A lot of his stories have connections with our own myths, legends and history.
  • He sees stories as a lineage back through his own family and thinks the reason people get old is so they can say to the kids, 'back in my day...'
  • He enjoys research - it's a break from writing.
  • Terry Pratchett believes writing is a way of showing the reader another way to look at the world.
Some of Pratchett's books I prefer as an audio book (which I get from audible.com), because they sound so good read aloud. Emily and I are listening to the main Discworld books that way. Emily also loves Only You Can Save Mankind.

But, I did manage to pick up a few more books while I was there. Here's my latest stash:

And, because he's also very awesome, I got these Garth Nix books:
O is also for Opportunity. And, if you get the opportunity to see a professional author speak, then you should jump at it. You can learn a lot from the Sir Pratchetts of the world.

Yes, Emily has green hair. Only for the holidays, then all those green bits must be snipped off before returning to school.


  1. Hello! I came here after you left a comment on my blog for writers and I'm glad I did - I love the way you write. Very fresh, very direct, very non-self-indulgent. And I love how much fun comes through.

  2. That's so cool! I've seen a couple authors speak when I was in college. It was enlightening! Authors are celebrities to me so I'm always a little starstruck. :)

    Thanks for stopping by my blog!

  3. Wow. It's must have been amazing see one of your favorite authors in person. Sadly, not to many of my favorite authors come down here to Orangeburg. :(

    I would like to thank you for stopping by my blog as well. I would like to give you the Versatile Blogger Award for having such an awesome blog (Sir Terry Pratchett sounds like my kind of author, I love it when people combines fantasy, humor, and myths/legends). :)

  4. Oops, forget to include the link where you can accept your award.


  5. I can relate to enjoying research as a break from writing. I spent countless hours researching for my MS and enjoyed every minute of it.

  6. That must have been such a thrill! I would love to hear one of my favorite authors speak. Thanks for sharing! Blessings, Joanne

  7. Great tips! I'm always looking for new recommendations on books to read. I'll definitely check out the ones you recommended.
    I found you on the A-Z challenge. Good luck!

  8. Great tips! Thanks for sharing them!

  9. I love such opportunities! Thanks for reminding us to just DO it.

  10. I think I need to remember to have fun when I'm writing. It's why I started in the first place.

  11. The girls from the bush are back in town ha ha. Lovely shot of the Opera House and Terry Pratchett has to be one of the funniest guys on the planet.


    L'Aussies Travel A-Z Challenge O is for Outback

  12. What a great time the two of you must have had. The Opera house is a thing of legend. And listening to an accomplished writer? Awesome fun.

  13. I'm so jealous!!!! Wow, what a wonderful experience!!!

    Can you believe I've never read a Terry Pratchett book? I know!!!!

    I will remedy that asap!

  14. How cool! I'd love to see Pratchett speak.

  15. How lucky you got to hear Terry Pratchett speak - I'm envious! Glad you enjoyed it :)

  16. That would be so fun. I think you got some great snippets from the talk. I agree that to have fun is so important. Great post thanks for the information.

  17. WOW we really enjoy your blog... we have an award for you at Dodge Writes...
    ENJOY !

  18. I'm deeply envious that you got to see Terry Pratchett and hear him speak. I've been a huge fan of Discworld for years and have most of the books in the series. They are hilarious, and an amazing example of how to torture your characters to good effect.

  19. I have awarded you the Versatile Blogger Award!
    You can pick it up at http://halligomez.blogspot.com

  20. My hubby is a huge fan of Pratchett. I particularly liked his Trucker series.

  21. I loved the line "adores to torture them." I love torturing my characters too. So much fun! :D

  22. Ooo. Sounds like a fabulous event.