I found an email in my inbox this morning from Penguin Random House. The title, “Announcement: Sir Terry Pratchett”. I have no idea why they have my email, I honestly haven’t thought to figure it out, but I’m sure you know the rest.
I grew up reading Terry Pratchett. Well, sort of. His novels were the only “real books” that I spent any time with in my teens and early twenties. I don’t remember when I read my first Discworld novel, but I was instantly a fan for life.
I was fortunate enough to meet Terry once during a signing at a local mall. I was very nervous, and made a terrible first impression. He had just finished signing my copy of Soul Music, my absolute favourite thing in the world at that point, and as I was handing over a copy of Good Omens I muttered something to that effect. The problem was he took it to mean I was speaking about the latter, instead of the former as I had intended. With a stern look he quickly wrote, “Burn this book” and then signed his name below. I was mortified, but unable to speak another word. I simply moved on so the next adoring fan could have their moment. Good Omens was actually for a friend. Soul Music was loaned to an acquaintance some years later and never returned. Any evidence of the meeting is now gone, except in my memory, and my regret.
So many other memories have gone, good memories, never to return. What I don’t ever want to forget is how I would go through each book and write down quotes or passages that meant something to me, that I related to deep in my core. There were so many of them! I don’t ever want to forget how when we read ‘Where’s My Cow’, a bedtime favourite, my boys laugh out loud at all the best parts. Most of all I don’t ever want to forget that his words are why I want to write, and share my stories. Although it still remains to be seen if this will be a worthwhile endeavor I think it’s important to note, encouraging anyone to be creative and live their dreams can never be a bad thing.
So that’s it, the musings of one fan in a legion of millions. This therapy session is now closed.
A Just Giving page donating to the Research Institute for the Care of Older People (RICE) has been set up in his memory:www.justgiving.com/Terry-Pratchett