Neil Gaiman

I am a gleeful puddle of glee. I not only got the newest book signed, but also my copy of Neverwhere. I am a happy Elly.
When I got to the bookshop there was no sign of the event about to take place, so I got a copy of The Ocean at the End of the Lane, and an employee at the information-desk informed that it had been moved to the public library next door, and that reservations had been put into place because of the amount of attention. Never fear, because the reservations were just so you were guaranteed a seat. I’d have to make do with standing-room. And I said that that was all right, as long as I could get my books signed.
So I paid, and went next door, and the woman behind the table who handled the reservations told me the same thing, about the standing-room and maybe I could grab one of the seats the library had for its other patrons. It’s there I also found out that you could get his latest book signed, and one of his other works. I was so glad I had taken the chance and brought along an older work. I went upstairs, and found a nice leather chair to sit with a view of the podium, and waited for the whole thing to begin.
There was going to be an interview first, and then the signing.
What I noticed is that Neil talks like he reads his works. There’s this trailing off at the end of a sentence that seems to lend it an air of wistfulness, like it’s more important than it actually is. I imagine him talking to the grocer like that. “Yes, I’d like a loaf of bread and some matches…”.
And he read the part of the book where they find the body of the opal miner in their car. Apparently, this is something that has happened in Neil’s life, although he didn’t find out about it until years later, back when he was a kid and his family had taken in a lodger.
This latest book, which he hadn’t meant to write – it started out as a short story just for his wife – pushed Dan Brown off the New York Times Bestseller-list. There was a round of applause for that.
At the end, he got asked if he was going to write an episode for the 12th Doctor, and what he thought of Peter Capaldi as the new one. As to the episode, he’ll have to see if he can fit it into his schedule. The months he was maybe going to spend on that script he finds himself touring for this book he had not meant to write. And he seems to like Peter Capaldi, who has apparently played the Angel Islington in the BBC-series of Neverwhere. I never knew that. I’ve never seen the series, only read the book.
And there was a question about a sequel to Good Omens. If Neil thought that would ever be written, given Terry’s sick. Neil wouldn’t say one way or the other, just that he couldn’t imagine writing it with anyone but Terry. But Terry is busy with other things before night falls, as Neil put it. But who knows, Terry might call him and say “Hey, I’ve got three weeks free, want to write this?” and I imagine they’d write it much the same way they wrote the first book.
After that, it was time for the signing. They’d start in the back, and then the people in the front could join the queue. Guess who was in the back? *grins* So I got my books signed quite early. The employees of the library handed out sticky notes for you to put your name on, to save time when you finally got to Neil.
He thanked me for coming. I said he was welcome. I told him I loved the episode he wrote for Dr Who, where the TARDIS comes to life. He agreed, and said he liked that one the best as well. The other one had some problems, I forgot what he said exactly. Just, I talked with him and didn’t stutter or turn red or spill things all over him. Not that I could have, with him being behind the table and a security-agent standing to the side to keep an eye on things. I wished him a good day, and left. I had what I came for, and I didn’t want to loiter.
I would have kicked myself for a long time if I hadn’t gone to this.


2 thoughts on “Neil Gaiman

  1. Neil, apparently, is a lovely guy. I read an interview with him recently, where the journalist (who is a Kiwi) woke him up because he thought the call was supposed to be an hour later, and he was absolutely fine with that. I believe he said something like “It’s a lovely way to wake up” πŸ™‚

    Apparently, the journalist in question did also do a nerd-girl swoon πŸ˜€

    Also, well done for not stuttering/blushing/spilling/proposing marriage on the spot (especially given the fact that he already has a wife, and you have a fiancee :))

    1. I told this story to a colleague of mine, and he was very impressed with your poise. He would’ve proposed to Neil πŸ˜›

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