So this is a totally unplanned, and unprepared post but it come from the heart. Honestly it really does. As most of you know, Sir Terry Pratchett passed away yesterday (12th March 2015) after suffering from Alzheimer’s for many years and although I knew and expected that he would die at some point the news was still a massive shock.
I read the tweet from the BBC news and couldn’t believe what my eyes were telling me. To me, it seemed like a joke and I didn’t want to believe it. And to be honest I still don’t want to believe it. How could someone who has influenced my life so much be gone? I was absolutely devastated to hear of his passing, and I felt bad because of this feeling. I had never met him, nor did I know him personally so why did his death affect me so much more than any other celebrity? After thinking about it, I realised it’s because he was a writer.
Now, I don’t mean that as in some sort of writers are better than any other type of person in the public eye. I mean it as in I carried his books around me. My mum started reading his books to me when I was really little (the Johnny Maxwell trilogy not Discworld). And when I was 9 I tried to read The Colour of Magic, but the story confused me, and it wasn’t until I was in my early teens that I began to read his works in earnest. There are so many characters that I could relate to or they reminded me of certain members of my family (Nanny Ogg is definitely my Nan!)
For me, writers and books have always been important. Don’t get me wrong, I love to sit down and watch a good TV programme or a film but a book is so much more intimate. You share the words the author has written and you play the scenes through your head, the characters are written so you can feel a connection with them whether it’s good or bad thing is a different point entirely. And I know that other films and TV also create characters with a connection but for me, personally, reading the character and imagining what they look like and how they sound and how they move is something that is more personal and it leaves a bigger impact on me.
I’ve had so many inspirations for my story ideas in the past and I know that I will have many more in the future as well but a part of me will never forget Rincewind, Susan, DEATH, Vimes, Carrot, Nobbs, Granny Weatherwax or Nanny Ogg. Their characteristics and mannerisms will always have me laughing and I will never stop reading them. I just wish that more of the stories could have been told.
The one positive thing that has come out of this is that I more determined to finish all my story ideas. And that is a lot. Perhaps one day people will love what I’ve done a quarter as much as they have with him, and perhaps I could be an influence for future writers. After all:
“One thing that writers have in common is that they are readers first. They have read lots and lots of stuff, because they’re just infested with lots of stuff.” – Terry Pratchett
Rest in Peace Sir Terry Pratchett you will be very sorely missed by so many people around the world.