Dirk Gently`s Holistic Detective Agency

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What do a dead cat, a computer whiz-kid, an Electric Monk who believes the world is pink, quantum mechanics, a Chronologist over 200 years old, Samuel Taylor Coleridge (poet), and pizza have in common?

Apparently, not much: until Dirk Gently, self-styled private investigator, sets out to prove the fundamental interconnectedness of all things by solving a mysterious murder, assisting a mysterious professor, unravelling a mysterious mystery, and eating a lot of pizza - not to mention saving the entire human race from extinction along the way (at no extra charge).

To find out more, read this book (better still, buy it and then read it) - or contact Dirk Gently`s Holistic Detective Agency.

227 pages, published in
Douglas Adams

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Dirk Gently`s Holistic Detective Agency PDF

Douglas Noel Adams ( Douglas Noël Adams ) Born: 03/11/1952 in Cambridge, UK Died: 05/11/2001 in Santa Barbara, California, USA Douglas Adams was born on March 11, 1952 years in Cambridge (UK). His parents moved to Essex when Adams was six months old and divorced when the boy was five. In September 1959, Douglas Adams entered the Brentwood School in Essex, graduating in 1970. His hobbies at the time included aeromodelling, guitar playing and reading. At the same time, at school, he wrote his first story. "There was one teacher at school whose name was Halford," Adams later recalled. "Every Thursday, after a break, we had an hour of composition lessons. We wrote stories. And I was the only one, who got ten out of ten. I`ll never forget that. And the weird thing is, I talked to some of those who were in the same class and they said that Mr. Halford never gave high marks. And one of them said: "Once upon a time. The only one I remember who got ten out of ten was Douglas Adams. "I`ll never forget that." Before going to Cambridge to pursue higher education, Adams decided to hitchhike to Istanbul. To save money for this, he worked as a janitor for some time, and then got a job in a hospital. The trip was not very successful. Adams was expelled from Istanbul by the authorities and forced onto a train to England. However, during a trip, or rather, in the middle of a field in Innsbruck (Austria), where he lay looking at the stars, because he was too poor to pay for a hotel room, he came up with an idea. Someone, he thought, someone really should write a Hitchhiker`s Guide to the Galaxy. Part of this idea could be caused by a slight intoxication, partly by the fact that at that moment there was a stolen copy of "Hitchhiker`s Guide to Europe" lying next to him. (This story is described in detail by Douglas Adams himself in "The Ultimate Hitchhiker`s Guide"). The next few years, Adams devoted to his studies, then worked for some time as a clerk, composing sketches for radio and television (meeting with members of the comic group Monty Python), but his writing, despite some success, did not bring money. He even had nothing to pay for housing, so in 1976 he was forced to return to his mother and live with her for about six months. One hundred dollars was his largest fee in those days. In fact, 1976 he called the worst year of his life. At the time, he tried unsuccessfully to convince TV producers to stage a sci-fi comedy show, but failed. Fortunately, at that time, one of the producers of BBC radio, Simon Brett, drew attention to him, who liked the idea of ​​a sci-fi comedy. “At first,” Douglas Adams recalled, “the show was completely different. I felt disgusting at the time and tried to put together about six different drafts of scripts, each of which would end up destroying the world in a new way and for a new reason. Earth. "However, along the way, the script gradually changed. To explain to the audience the reasons for the destruction of the planet, an alien Ford Prefect was introduced into the show, and the name Arthur Dent was entered there at the last moment (the hero`s name was originally Aleric B). March 1, 1977 BBC management approved the pilot release, Adams handed the script on April 4, but after that there were many delays associated with the summer vacations of the BBC management and finally all six episodes of the show were approved only at the end of August. (By then Simon Brett was already working on television, and Joffrey became the producer Perkins (Geoffrey Perkins) After months of hard work with the actors and sound effects, the show was ets finished. The first episode aired on BBC Radio 4 at 10:30 pm on Wednesday 8 March 1978. “The BBC wasn’t sure what they got in the end,” wrote Neil Gaiman in the documentary Don & # 039; t Panic. “The first sci-fi radio show since Journey into Space in the 1950s; half an hour of semantics and philosophical jokes about the meaning of life and fish in the ears? .. They put it at 10:30 pm in the middle, when, they hoped, no one would listen to it; without preliminary advertising and publications, hoping that this way the reputation of Radio 4 is nothing hurt. " When Douglas Adams went to the BBC the next morning to find out what reviews and reviews the show had received, he was told that radio shows rarely get media attention at all, and even more so one should not expect anything about some kind of scientific -fantastic production. But already on Saturday, two prominent newspapers published approving reviews of the pilot issue, which amazed the BBC leadership indescribably. The Hitchhiker`s Guide to the Galaxy quickly became popular and in 1979 was nominated for a Hugo Award in the Best Dramatic Presentation category, but was voted second place, losing to Superman. ". Nevertheless, it received the Imperial Tobacco Award (1978), Sony Award (1979), Best Program for Young People (1980). In addition to working on HHGtG, Adams also wrote the series "Dr Who story: The Pirate Planet" and in 1980 received an offer to become a radio producer, which he accepted without much hesitation. And after the entire series of "The Guide ..." aired, Adams received an offer from two publishers who wanted him to turn the show into a fiction book. A preliminary agreement was signed with Pan Books, and Adams, who had never written a novel before, invited co-writer John Lloyd to help him with the last two episodes of the radio show. “I worked very hard on radio for five years and was a little tired of it. I could imagine myself a boring, old radio producer in the 90s, so I was very excited about the prospect of writing a book together,” Lloyd recalled. “Then one night at we had a strange conversation. Douglas said to me: "Why don`t you write your own novel?" I said: "But we decided to write a Guide together ..." and he replied - "I think you should write your own" ... the next day I received a letter saying "I have thought it all over and I want to do my own thing. It`s not easy, but I want to go my own way. "It was a fantastic shock ..." However, after a few days, the misunderstanding between the co-authors was successfully resolved. Douglas Adams signed a contact that received £ 2,000 in advance and ten percent of the book`s sales, and the publisher was to pay John Lloyd another ten percent for the use of the radio show`s title. The litagent was against such an agreement. The publishers did not like it either, and even Douglas Adams`s mother believed that it should have been co-authored, but he did it his own way. Adams and Lloyd went on vacation to Greece, where Adams did the first sketches of the novel, and Lloyd read them and gave advice. In the end, Adams, wanting to make the book as good as possible, thwarted all the deadlines for the manuscript. (Subsequently, his "unique ability" to disrupt deadlines became famous). Using material from four episodes of the radio show, Adams saved the fifth and sixth for the second book (although there was no talk about it at that time) and turned in the material to the publisher. In the first three months after the release of the novel, 250 thousand copies were sold, and later Douglas Adams became the youngest writer to receive the Golden Pan (the award is given for a million books sold). "Guide ..." refers to the very small number of books written in the genre of humorous fiction, and written really masterfully - with soft and unobtrusive English humor in the best traditions of Woodhouse and Jerome K. Jerome (frank gags of the first two novels are the legacy of the radio show ). The main character is an earthling Arthur Dent. For him (and for all of us), the book starts on Thursday, but Arthur`s things go awry on Thursdays - so first his house is demolished to build some stupid highway, then his planet is destroyed in order to lay an equally stupid hyperspace route, and then Arthur finds himself in the middle of dirty linen in the pantry of one of the Vogon ships (the Vogons are the same green guys who destroyed the Earth). A significant role in Arthur`s adventures is played by Ford Prefect, who saves Arthur from death during the destruction of the earth. Ford travels from planet to planet on the way, riveting articles for the electronic "Guide to the Galaxy" and this explains a lot ... The second book of the "Guide ..." - "Restaurant" At the End of the Universe "Douglas Adams called his favorite. Publishing Pan Books inspired by the success the first novel, however, had concerns about Adams` ability to deliver the second novel on time. “We expected him to be late with the second book,” recalled Jacqueline Graham, then working at the publishing house, “so we even planned this delay, but at the same time thought "Well, he won`t do it again, right? He will start on time or he will have a schedule and he will attach it to ..." "Every time I made a new version," Adams explained in turn, "I always thought I could to do better; and I was very afraid that I might do something wrong, worse than in the previous one "... In the end, he had to turn off the phone, and, locking himself in a room for a whole month, lead a reclusive lifestyle, without being distracted by any what, cr ome of writing a book. When the novel was finally completed and was released in 1980, Adams did not plan to return to this series ever in the future, but later agreed to write a third novel. Since the ideas of the radio show were fully utilized in the first two books, the third - "Life, Universe and Everything else" was based on the script of the radio series "Dr. Who" written long ago by Douglas Adams, which never went on the air. The work was not going very well, in particular due to personal troubles, so after finishing the first draft by three quarters, Adams found it terrible and called the publisher with an apology, notifying them that he would need more time. He went to the United States for a month to participate in the promotion of the first two novels, and after returning several times he rewrote the draft, changing almost every word in it. Life, Universe, and Everything Else was published in 1982 and received much less critical acclaim, but that same year, Adams` novels made it onto the New York Times bestellers list and Publishers & # 039; Weekly bestsellers list - For the first time since Ian Fleming (creator of James Bond), an English writer has managed to achieve such success in America. At the same time, the first two books of "Guide ..." were adapted for a six-part television production that won awards in the categories Best TV Graphics, Best VTR Editing and Best Sound. The writer himself, who back in 1979 spoke out against the television series, after its release on television, commented on this work as follows: "The TV version of" Guide "was not the best. There were personal disagreements between me and the director. And between the actors and the director. And between the girl who brought tea and the director ... "After the third book of the" Guide ... "Douglas Adams vowed to write a continuation of the series. Nevertheless, he wrote it. Neil Gaiman in his book "Don & # 039; t Panic!" gives three reasons why Adams signed the contract: firstly - constant pressure from readers, literary agents and publishers, secondly - the final message of God to his creations (God`s Final Message to His Creation), which Douglas Adams invented, but did not use in the first three books and, finally, in the third - six hundred thousand pounds (!) offered to him for the novel. The contract was signed, the deadline was agreed, but Adams was late again, violating all the deadlines that had been agreed in advance, which caused very strong dissatisfaction among the publishers. “When I started, I didn`t really want to write another book of The Guidebook,” recalled Adams. “Then I took part in quite lengthy advertising tours and took an active part in writing a computer game, which took a lot of time. And I also wrote one of versions of the screenplay. So I put the book on and on, doing the things I wanted to do, and at the end had to write the book in an incredibly short amount of time, still absolutely not sure I wanted to do it. " Thus, once again, the situation with forced seclusion was repeated, but this time with the direct participation of the publishers, who rented a room for Adams in the London hotel where he was supposed to work. Since he had already taken the advance, he could not refuse. The fourth book of the "Guide" entitled "Good day, and thanks for the fish!" came out in November 1984. Gaiman wrote that it was very different from previous novels and received different responses. "For many fans, it was a disappointment: they wanted more Zaphod, more Marvin, more space; they wanted Arthur to stay with Trillian; they wanted to see how the Agrajag problem was solved; to know why Arthur Dent is so important in the universe (and what is so funny in frogs); they wanted more towel jokes and excerpts from The Hitchhiker`s Guide to the Galaxy. They got a love story. " (Neil Gaiman "Don & # 039; t Panic") Back in the early 1980s, Douglas Adams became seriously interested in computers. Various companies made him offers to release a computer game based on the "Guide" and in the end Adams chose for cooperation the American company Infocom, which in those years was the "king" of the genre of adventure games. The contract was signed at the end of 1983. An avid crossword fan, Douglas Adams chose the smart adventure genre over all others. He worked on the game together with the cult programmer Steve Meretsky. Adams wrote the script for the game and sent it from Boston to Massachusetts using the same kind of e-mail that existed then, Meretski programmed and sent the result to Adams, he wrote again and so on ... The challenge was to keep the balance without disappointing the replays of those players who read the book and do not leave to wander in the darkness of those who have not read the book. As a result, the game "The Hitchhiker & # 039; s Guide to Galaxy" (it was released at the end of 1984, and its slightly revised version at the beginning of 1985) won an award from Thames TV and is considered by many to be the best sci-fi or humorous (depending on from the point of view) by the game of Infocom. A certain amount of original material was included in the game, which never appeared in books or radio shows. This cooperation between Adams and Infocom did not end - he later wrote another humorous adventure game - "Bureaucracy" (it was planned to be released in mid-1985, but due to delays it was released only in 1987), where it was about a person who had recently changed jobs and who moved to a new place of residence, but due to bureaucratic confusion and the tricks of a malicious hacker gets into funny alterations. Adams planned to continue working with Inforcom - in particular, it was announced that "The Hitchhiker`s Guide to Galaxy II" should be released, but the adventure genre gradually began to lose its former popularity, the company had financial problems, and Adams did not did not find time to write the script, so the sequel did not see the light of day. In 1984, Douglas Adams, together with John Lloyd, wrote the non-fiction book Meaning of Liff, and in 1990 its sequel, The Deeper Meaning of Liff. “One morning in November 1985, Douglas Adams and his agent Ed Victor sat in a hotel room with many phone lines waiting for a call. By the end of the day, a lucky publisher had left with the rights to Dirk Gently`s Detective Agency and its sequel, and Douglas became two million dollars richer than he was this morning. The first book was delivered a year later and published in April 1987. " (Neil Gameman "Don & # 039; t panic"). Dirk Gently`s Holistic Detective Agency turned out to be a very strange mixture of mystery, detective, humor and everything else. A year later, Adams wrote a sequel - Long Dark Tea-time of the Soul . It should be noted, however, that in both cases the writer, as usual, thwarted the deadlines for the manuscript. He didn`t even have time to correct spelling mistakes. The Dirk Gently novels certainly did not fit into the established framework of genres. Despite the presence of ghosts, this was not horror or mysticism; the laws of classic detective stories, established for years, were constantly violated; and many fans of "The Guide" were disappointed not to find parody jokes in the book - Adams deliberately wrote a comedy, not a parody. " The Long Tea " published in 1988 was dedicated to Jane Belson and three years later she became the writer`s wife. From May 1988 to the summer of 1989, Douglas Adams, in company with zoologist Mark Carwardine (Mark Carwardine) went in search of endangered species. (They already had the experience of such travels, visiting Madagascar in 1985, where, to their mutual satisfaction, they photographed Aye-Aye, an animal that no one had seen for several years).