My full piece for Ladies of Literature Vol 2! Featuring Susan Sto Helit from Sir Terry Pratchett’s Discworld series. If you haven’t read Discworld before, I can’t recommend it enough. His characters and stories will leave an impression on you all while making you laugh and think at the same time.

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Did you know there’s a prolific male fantasy author who has made several books in which the primary cast is mostly female characters?

Did you know that virtually every female character in his books are well-rounded people with a wide variety of personalities, body types, etc?

Did you know that some of the most badass characters in the series are women?

Did you know that even in the books with male main characters female characters are given respect and are rarely love interests?

Did you know that those that are love interests have their own lives outside of that, are more then matches for the main character,  and in some cases it could be more considered that the main character is THEIR love interest?

Did you know that female warriors in this series wear sensible armour?

Did you know that the one character that ends up naked as a necessity treats it as a drawback and does her best to mitigate the issue without it ever turning into a sexual thing from a writing perspective, including, amazingly enough, the one time she had to fight another naked woman in mud?

Did you know there’s a feminist character who wields femininity as a strength, and not a weakness?

Did you know that the first serious, budgeted attempt to bring it to life in video was based on one of the books with a female protagonist?

Let me tell you about Terry Pratchett’s Discworld.

The other teachers in the school were known as Stephanie and Joan and so on, but to her class she was very strictly Miss Susan. “Strict,” in fact, was a word that seemed to cover everything about Miss Susan and, in the classroom, she insisted on the Miss in the same way that a king insists upon Your Majesty, and for pretty much the same reason.

Miss Susan wore black, which the headmistress disapproved of but could do nothing about because black was, well, a respectable color. She was young, but with an indefinable air of age about her. She wore her hair, which was blond-white with one black streak, in a tight bun; the headmistress disapproved of that, too – it suggested an Archaic Image Of Teaching, she said, with the assurance of someone who could pronounce a capital letter. But she didn’t ever dare disapprove of the way Miss Susan moved, because Miss Susan moved like a tiger.

It was always very hard to disapprove of Miss Susan in her presence, because if you did, she gave you a Look. It was not in any way a threatening look. It was cool and calm. You just didn’t want to see it again.

The Look worked in the classroom, too. Take homework, another Archaic Practice the headmistress was ineffectively Against. No dog ever ate the homework of one of Miss Susan’s students, because there was something about Miss Susan that went home with them; the dog brought them a pen and watched imploringly while they finished it, instead. Miss Susan seemed to have an unerring instinct for spotting laziness, and effort, too.

Contrary to the headmistress’s instructions, Miss Susan did not let the children do what they liked. She let them do what she liked. It had turned out to be a lot more interesting for everyone.

Miss Susan held up the cardboard clock and said:

“Who can tell me what this is?”

A forest of hands shot up.

“Yes, Miranda?”

“It’s a clock, miss.”

Miss Susan smiled, carefully avoided the hand that was being waved by a boy called Vincent who was also making frantically keen “ooo, ooo, ooo” noises, and chose the boy behind him.

“Nearly right,” she said. “Yes, Samuel?”

“It’s all cardboard made to look like a clock,” said the boy.

“Correct. Always see what’s really there. And I’m supposed to teach you to tell the time with this.” Miss Susan gave it a sneer and tossed it away.

“Shall we try a different way?” she said and snapped her fingers.

“Yes!” the class chorused, and then it went “aah!” as the walls, floor, and ceiling dropped away and the desks were all hovering high over the city.

A few feet away was the huge cracked face of the tower clock of Unseen University.

The children nudged one another excitedly. The fact that their boots were over one hundred feet of fresh air didn’t seem to bother them. Oddly, too, they did not seem surprised. This was just an interesting thing. They acted like connoisseurs who had seen other interesting things. You did, when you were in Miss Susan’s class.

~ Terry Pratchett, Thief of Time

“Miss Susan Teaches Time” from the Discworld Calendar 2014, illustrated by Marc Simonetti.


Discworld for - :)

William de Worde, Otto Chriek, Lord Vetinari, Sam Vimes with Errol, Carrot, Angua, Cheery Littlebottom, Moist Von Lipwig, mr.Pump, mr. Teatime, Chidder(sitting one),Teppic, Ricewind,Mort, Death, Susan, Maladict,  Lieutenant Blouse and Sergent Jackrum :)

(not even half of my most favorite discworld character….ok…almost every discworld character´s my favorite :3 )

what have I done

Well, who didn’t read Pratchett’s “Hogfather”, easy way to defeat bogeyman is to put a blanket on his head, and there was this episode in bar with drunk bogeyman and Susan, and I just…agskghnhhsusaaan

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*давно не было Пратчетта…но это так, чтобы разрядить обстановку, пока совсем не убилась с компановкой тургорских скетчей -__-

okay but on the list of obvious and awesome but totally underexplored discworld brotps adora and susan have gotta be pretty high up 

I mean…two terrifying women with an affinity for pointy objects and the colour black who exist in a state of near-constant fury with the world at large and are really bad at making friends. what more could you ask for in a brotp tbh? also I read a comment somewhere about adora basically being a less interesting expy of susan and that annoyed me so this was also an exercise in making two quite similar women look as visually different as possible

why is susan pulling that expression? well as its 100% canon that adora is utterly shameless when it comes to sex and sex jokes (see: making money and raising steam) and seeing as susan is really not very good at interacting with anyone over the age of ten, I feel like susan probably pulls that face a lot during their initial interactions…


Top 5 favorite Michelle Dockery characters: #2. Susan Sto Helit (The Hogfather)
- “And then Jack chopped down what was the world’s last beanstalk, adding murder and ecological terrorism to the theft, enticement and trespass charges already mentioned, and all the giant’s children didn’t have a daddy any more. But he got away with it and lived happily ever after without so much as a guilty twinge about what he had done. Which proves that you can be excused just about anything if you’re a hero, because no-one asks inconvenient questions.”