Not the one on Gotham. Actor, comedian, writer, game designer, ginger. Host of Pratchat podcast; star and producer of Night Terrace.
Author, editor and journalist Stephanie Convery returns to Pratchat as newspapers and conspiracy hit Ankh-Morpork in the same week! It's The Truth, the 25th Discworld novel, first published in 2000. William de Worde has made a reasonable living writing a monthly newsletter for notables, keeping them informed of goings on in Ankh-Morpork. But when he's nearly run over by Gunilla Goodmountain's new movable type printing press, he soon begins producing a different kind of "paper of news" - one that anyone can buy on the street, full of the important stories of the day. Before long "the Ankh-Morpork Times" - soon employing writer Sacharissa Cripslock and vampire iconographer Otto von Chriek - is a hit...and has ruffled a few feathers. But William has a powerful drive to spread the news, only intensified when Lord Vetinari is found unconscious next to a horse loaded with money after supposedly having stabbed his clerk. The Patrician being arrested for attempted murder and embezzlement is big news, of course - but is it the truth? Pratchett cut his teeth as a writer as a journalist, and had for many years used his work as inspiration - but nowhere as directly as in the 25th Discworld novel, which introduces the Disc's first newspaper journalists, William de Worde. Apart from William, the novel also brings us the Times' staff, most notably Sacharissa and Otto, who pop up in many future books, and the unforgettable "New Firm" of Mr Pin and Mr Tulip - plus the triumphant return of Gaspode! The books also draws on sources as broad as Shakespeare, the history of printing, Watergate and Pulp Fiction for inspiration, references and jokes, while still packing in themes as serious as public interest, prejudice, class privilege and...well...the truth. Is it weird seeing Vimes as a secondary character through the eyes of a journalist? Do you wish the staff of the Times had more books of their own? Where do you come down on the debate over public interest vs "of interest to the public"? Share your truth with us via the hashtag #Pratchat42 on social media, and join the conversation! Guest Stephanie Convery is a freelance writer and Deputy Culture Editor for Guardian Australia. Since she was last a guest on this podcast (discussing Mort way back in #Pratchat2, "Murdering a Curry"), Stephanie has published her first book: After the Count, a critically acclaimed "history and interrogation of boxing as art and a cultural examination of sport", framed around the death of boxer Davey Browne following a knockout in the ring. You can check out Stephanie's work at Guardian Australia, or follow her on Twitter at @gingerandhoney. We're planning to be part of the line-up for the Australian Discworld Convention's online event, The Lost Con, on Saturday 3rd July, 2021. More details on that soon! We'd also love to know if you want us to do an episode about The Watch television series, and whether you'd support Ben making a similar podcast about the works of Douglas Adams. Next time we're jumping ahead into the future as we continue to spread out Tiffany Aching's story: yes, it's time to grab A Hat Full of Sky! We'll be joined by writer and poet, Sally Evans. Send us your questions using the hashtag #Pratchat43, or get them in via email: You'll find the full notes and errata for this episode on our web site. This month (April 2021) you can also help raise money for Meals on Wheels in the US as part of the #Reviews4Good initiative! We'll respond and double the donation, too. Just review the show (or an episode) on Podchaser.
Educator Dr Charlotte Pezaro joins Liz and Ben on a trip to the South Pelagic, where they find tsunamis, gods and science in Nation, Pratchett's standalone young adult novel from 2008. Mau is returning from his rite of passage when a huge wave washes over his island Nation, killing everyone he has ever known. He is all alone, stuck without a soul between the states of boy and man. Lost in his despair and anger at the gods he now isn't sure he believes in, he's ready to give in to the dark water until he meets Daphne, the only survivor from a "trouserman" ship flung into the Nation by the wave. As they learn each others' customs and languages, and other survivors gradually begin to arrive, Mau and Daphne must both reckon with the gods and ghosts of the Nation's past - and work hard to ensure it has a future... Pratchett's own proudest achievement, and winner of multiple of awards, Nation presents an alternate universe where things are a little bit different in some ways...and considerably different in others. Pratchett examines his favourite themes of belief, death, imperialism and science through a new lens, in a tale of loss, growing up, and asking big questions. Is this Pratchett's magnum opus? Does inventing an entire universe next door make it okay for a white Englishman to tell a story about South Pacific Islanders with the serial numbers filed off? Why did he split Australia in half ? Tell us by using the hashtag #Pratchat41 on social media to join the conversation! Guest Dr Charlotte Pezaro is an educator with a PhD in pedagogy and years of science and technology communication experience. Charlotte is also a qualified primary school teacher, and works with other teachers to help them improve their skills. You can find out more about Charlotte at, or follow her on Twitter at @dialogicedu. Next time we're heading back to Ankh-Morpork for a tale of journalism, vampirism and authoritarianism, the 25th Discworld novel: 2000's The Truth! We'll be joined by returning guest, writer and deputy culture editor for Guardian Australia, Stephanie Convery. Send us your questions using the hashtag #Pratchat42, or get them in via email: You'll find the full notes and errata for this episode on our web site.
Comedian Richard McKenzie returns to get a bit gothic as he, Liz and Ben head to Überwald to discuss The Fifth Elephant in the which we mean the twenty-fourth Discworld novel, published in 1999. As Ankh-Morpork and its neighbours embrace modern semaphore technology, trouble is brewing among the dwarfs. A new Low King is soon to be crowned in Überwald - and not everyone is happy with the choice. The Patrician selects just the right "diplomat" for the job: the Duke of Ankh, Sir Samuel Vimes. He reluctantly agrees to face vampires, werewolves, Igors and dwarf politics in a place where his Watch badge holds no sway. He's not going alone - though Sergeant Detritus (a troll) and Corporal Cheery Littlebottom (the first openly female dwarf) are not likely to be popular with the traditional dwarfs of Überwald. Luckily he also has diplomatic attaché Inigo Skimmer, and his strongest ally: his wife, the Lady Sybil Ramkin... After exploring one vampire family from Überwald in Carpe Jugulum, Pratchett takes Sam Vimes out of his comfort zone and into the lands of the fabled fifth elephant, while making far fewer references to the Luc Besson film than you'd expect. With Carrot and Angua off on a B-plot, and Colon, Nobby and the rest of the Watch left behind in the C-plot, it's also a chance for background characters Detritus, Cheery and Lady Sybil to shine. The novel also expands on the culture of vampires, werewolves, Igors and especially dwarfs, building the foundations for many future novels. It's a great read for a Discworld fan - but would The Fifth Elephant make a confusing introduction to the series? Was this Sybil's finest hour, or were you left wanting more of her? Does a beloved character do a murder? If so, is it okay? And did Carrot really need to be there, or was he just a Gaspode enabling device? Tell us by using the hashtag #Pratchat40 on social media to join the conversation! Returning guest Richard McKenzie is hopefully back to hosting trivia twice a week, on Thursdays and Sundays, at the Cornish Arms on Sydney Road in Brunswick, Melbourne. He and Ben devised the Dungeons & Dragons themed impro comedy show Dungeon Crawl, which now usually appears at Melbourne games expo PAX Aus. He also appears in the lineup of ensemble comedy shows The Anarchist Guild Social Committee and Secondhand Cinema Club. A a quick reminder that you can order Collisions, the short story anthology from Liminal Magazine, from your local bookshop! It includes Liz's story "The Voyeur" and fifteen others. The link also has some online sources if you need 'em. Next time we're reading something very different: Pratchett's standalone, non-Discworld young adult novel from 2008, Nation! We'll be joined by educator Charlotte Pezaro. Send us your questions using the hashtag #Pratchat41, or get them in via email: You'll find the full notes and errata for this episode on our web site.
We're kicking off the Year of the Beleaguered Badger with something a little different: an international guest, and a short story! Unofficial Pratchett biographer Marc Burrows joins us from the UK to discuss the third Discworld short story: 1998's The Sea and Little Fishes! Without much else but the carefully applied annoyances of Nanny Ogg to occupy her time, Granny Weatherwax is ready to win the annual Witch Trial - just as she does every year. But Lettice Earwig, self-appointed leader of a sort of witch committee, has decided this is discouraging new witches, and asks Granny not to participate. She also tells Granny to try being "nice" - and the worst part is, Granny appears to be taking her advice... Very long for a short story, The Sea and Little Fishes delves into the relationship between two of Pratchett's most beloved characters, and introduces people and concepts he'd later expand upon in the Tiffany Aching novels. In a sense it's a story in which almost nothing happens, but then that's largely the point - someone like Granny Weatherwax hardly has to do anything at all to move mountains. Where did you read it? What do you think of the title? And how long can a story be while still being considered "short"??? Let us know! Use the hashtag #Pratchat39 on social media to join the conversation. Guest Marc Burrows is a writer, musician and comic. His articles and reviews about music and culture have appeared in The Guardian and a variety of other publications, but he's currently best known as the author of the first, unofficial Terry Pratchett biography, The Magic of Terry Pratchett, which you can learn all about at He is also a member of the band The Men Who Will Not Be Blamed For Nothing, and has two upcoming non-fiction books about music. The best place to find Marc online is as @20thcenturymarc on Twitter and Instagram, and you can sign up to his newsletter "The Glom of Nit" via You can find the full show notes and errata for this episode on our web site. We plan to cover short stories once or twice a year to help us all keep up with the schedule, in part because our original plan - to cover them as live shows - hasn't worked out this last year. But next month it's back to the Discworld novels, and the Watch, with The Fifth Elephant - and we're welcoming back one of our earliest guests, Richard McKenzie! Send us your questions via email, or social media using the hashtag #Pratchat40. Want to make sure we get through every Pratchett book - and maybe make a few more live episodes like this? You can support Pratchat for as little as $2 a month and get subscriber bonuses, like the exclusive bonus podcast Ook Club!
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Creator Details

Apr 6th, 1979
Melbourne VIC, Australia
Episode Count
Podcast Count
Total Airtime
6 days, 15 hours
Podchaser Creator ID logo 632322