[NaoReviews] In Memory: A tribute to Sir Terry Pratchett

Cover of In Memory: A Tribute to Sir Terry Pratchett
Cover of In Memory: A Tribute to Sir Terry Pratchett

ISBN: 1517603609

Editors: Laura May and Sorin Siciu

Authors: Sorin Suciu, Laura May, Anna Mattaar, Caroline Friedel, Charlotte Slocombe, Choong Jay Vee, DK Mok, Luke Kemp, Lyn Godfrey, Michael K. Schaefer, Mike Reeves-McMillan, Peter Knighton, Phil Elstob, Robert McKelvey, Scott A. Butler, Simon Evans, Steven McKinnon

Price: About $4.99 on Amazon, others to come later.

Note: ALL proceeds go to Alzheimer’s Research UK.

Rating: 4.5 out of 5
TL;DR: Take a moment to breathe and smile.

Disclaimer: I received this book in return for providing a review. All opinions are my own.

These stories, like a good memory, are not to be devoured in one setting lest they overwhelm you. I had to take breathers while reading this anthology, and I have never done that before unless it was motivated by boredom or exhaustion. In Memory: A Tribute to Sir Terry Pratchett, is an anthology where each story begs to be savoured, lingering after its end.

Everyone in this anthology has nailed the Terry Pratchett irreverence, but most of all, I think, it is a fitting tribute to his memory. Each one has something to contribute to the anthology, but as usual, what one may like, another may not.

So it was with me and this anthology. I admit it was hard for me to get into Thanks for the Memory Cards by Luke Kemp, and How Fell the Towers Three by Peter Knighton, while funny, felt a little too familiar (as in the tropes and plot used). Strangers by Robert McKelvey was fun, but felt a little unresolved by the way it ended. Doris by Sorin Suciu was a fun read, and I loved the reference to TED talks.

Bubble Trouble by Charlotte Slocombe was a little of an unexpected heartbreak. Despite the peppy title, the premise was actually very tragic, and it was incredibly touching. Another one that tugged at the heart strings was Scott A Butler’s The Memoryarian. The things one would do for a loved one…

The Vividarium was wonderfully vibrant and vivid, but it also felt incredibly petty. It’s cute but just not to my taste. However, The Wondrous Land of Nib by Lyn Godfrey and If Only I’d Known by Simon Evans were. I thoroughly enjoyed both these stories, the Land of Nib making me feel guilty about my creations that have never seen anything beyond a few day’s lights.

Laura May’s The Shells of Lethe and Michael K Shaefer’s Ackerley’s Genuine Earth Antiques both deal with the consequences of deliberately forgetting. They also make me feel like these stories could be spun out into a novel or to a longer length. I’d like to wander more please.

The Chicken Gospel was a fun and enjoyable romp. I loved how looking at things from a different view changed and influenced the story so much. Caroline Friedel’s The Tale of the Storyteller is a wonderful way to send #GNUTerryPratchett off, which is one of the reasons why I wished it had been at the END of the book instead of the middle. I admit, I teared a little.

I also love the fact that there are not one, but TWO stories about the Lost Memories’ Department. Anna Mattaar’s The Archive of Lost Memories is something that I wish existed in real life, if only because I am a busybody. :p In contrast, Choong Jay Vee’s The Olivie Crowne Affair is a delightful take on missing memories. There’s also a dragon involved. But more importantly, homicidal computers.

Now we come to the stories that I think had the most fleshed out worlds. These were stories I think most closely reminded me of the early Discworld novels; where less words were needed to explain the tropes, and so the story could get to the plot and twisting the trope quicker.

There’s a Tattoo, but the Robes Hide It is one of those. I loved the humour, the wittiness, and the quiet desperation of the main character. While the ending may be predictable, it’s not such a bad thing; I was more amused by the reactions of the cast.

The Heart of the Labryinth though, was simply incredible. This is my favourite story of the lot. How DK Mok crammed AN ENTIRE FANTASY NOVEL into a short story is mindblowing. It doesn’t just talk about memory, but about overthrowing tyrants, making peace with your past, and did I mention an epic journey throughout the land? Among the people they rescued were the Kleptomaniac Kraken and the Judgemental Jellyfish, who eventually kept an eye on each other.

So get this Tribute to Sir Terry Pratchett, especially if you are a fan of his works. Also, the publishers of the book are running a giveaway on Goodreads, so visit this link now.

Of drawing personal dreams

Inktober drawing of a standing desk from my Instagram
Inktober drawing of a standing desk from my Instagram

Fear of pain or pursuit of pleasure?

Perhaps these, more than anything else in the world, motivate humans. Our behaviour, our drives, our actions. You either move towards something, or you move away from it. There is no middle path. If you choose to stand still, it will come to you, or it will leave you. Either way, movement is involved, even if you are not providing it.

My desire to be massively accepted and be looked up to is motivated by fear. I don’t want to be alone. I want to avoid the pain of being left behind. I fear being discarded.

Adults are bastards. Adults, especially, who have a grievance against your parents, are especially horrible creatures. In their depraved desire to bring down someone they think unworthy, they scar others. And consider it to be fair game.

I’m still learning to deal with the ghosts of my past. No, it was not especially traumatic, at least not in the physical and emotional abuse sense. However, they did scar me. And the incidents shaped me into who I am today.

Who is quite different from whom I wanted to be. That though, is another post for another day.

I want to talk to you about this picture.

My heart was thumping as I drew it. It took me over 30 minutes to get it right, even though I had a clear image of what I thought it was going to be. However, the reality is different from the image in my head. Lines in my head, for instance, were clearer. Now though, this one’s a bit… fudgy.

And that’s how life works. What you see is not always what you get. Which is kinda fine, unless you’re a designer or an artist who specialises in realism. But I’m disgressing.

Confronting my personal heart has always left me breathless. My heart, unlike the heart of the boy in The Alchemist speaks to me of fear always. Of the need to be cautious. To protect myself from being hurt again, imagined or not.

But there are days, days like these, when my heart encourages me to bare it. When it says to give thanks for the blessings I have received. It’s a gentle nudge, but I often find myself being swept away whenever I listen to my heart then.

So, what’s so personal about this drawing?

It’s the breaking of a chain. The acknowledgement of a way of thinking that has not served me. Or rather, that has held me back.

I have issues with preconceived notions. In that, I form them and don’t let go. This applies mainly to me, and not anyone else. I have a preconceived notion of how I should write. Why I should write. Or how to act. Things I should draw. Things I shouldn’t say.

I allowed my writing, my interests, and perhaps more stupidly, my skills to stagnate because of this. I received a few hard knocks, and then I went into my shell to hide and lick my wounds. I said I would try again, but I never did.

Like almost drowning and then using that as an excuse not to ever learn swimming (which is a true story, by the way).

I’m learning to trust myself again. To allow myself to breathe for myself, and not for others. To take form again.

And hopefully I will get better at it.

Funnily enough, I was inspired to try this after reading the 10 drawing myths that block your progress. Also found Alonso Dunn’s tutorials on drawing with pen and pencil, so that helped a bit.

[Nanowrimo] Bloodsworn Synopsis


This being a synopsis of this year’s Nanovel. Yes, I know it’s a poem rather than an actual synopsis, but this is all I have so far. Let’s hope drafting goes better this year than it did last year.

Secrets unopened
Secrets revealed
Secrets hidden
Secrets unspoken

Blood that binds us all
Blood that holds us all
Blood unquenched
Blood unspilled
In innocence, purify
In sin, destroy.

Tis the end of our journey
Tis the end of our song
Tis a chapter closed
Forgive us all our wrongs.