Monday, July 07, 2003

Home again home again joggetty jig

And look, I'm home.

Travelling with daughters is very different to travelling on my own, I think. I mean, without daughters I would never have stopped at Iceland's Blue Lagoon yesterday, on the way to the airport. The water really is a milky blue colour, and it's hot (it's actually the run-off from a geothermal power station), and it smells faintly of sulphurous compounds, and it's half sea-water. It was a perfect sort of thing to do to take all the travelling aches away, especially on a rainy, rather chilly day, which meant that clouds of steam were always coming off the water, and it all felt a lot like Loch Ness in a movie early in the morning, except for being hot, and the blue-green algae, and the steam rooms.

Dave McKean has e-mailed me six MirrorMask photos for Entertainment Weekly from which I'm picking two and writing explanatory captions -- they'll pick the one they like and run it, along with some quotes, in a couple of weeks.

I'm about ten days behind on answering FAQ messages, have finally wrapped up the story for Al Sarrantonio (which I've decided to call "The Problem of Susan") and have to write an introduction for the US edition of Don't Panic! today and get the final draft of the Delirium story to Vertigo tonight...

does it ever depress you that there are more good books out there than you could possibly cram into one lifetime?


Frustrates perhaps. Not depresses. I used to have the "Desert island shelf" of books that I was going to read when I was stranded on a desert island, and it was years before I realised that the possibility that I'd be stranded on a desert island with those books was very, very small...

That's you and Mr. Zulli among the crowd in The Sandman: The Wake chapter 3, on the page where the cloth wraps itself around Morpheus's body after Matthew has given his speech, isn't it? How does it feel to have yourself drawn as a part of your stories?

- Jenni

Of course we were there. Everyone was there. You were there too....

Hello Mister Gaiman. I want to ask if this to him the current of as comics in Spain publishes his "Norma Comics". For year and means that announced "Sandman:Estacion de Nieblas" and they have been being delaying alleging it legal questions(�?). When seeing Coraline published by "Salamandra Ediciones" it asked to me if the rumors of you were certain you want that another serious publishing house but published its works.

Sorry for my english.A greeting.

Er... not quite sure I understand this one (it looks like you've used a translator program). As far as I know Norma are still enthusiastically the DC Comics' Spanish licensee for all the Sandman books. CORALINE is published by Salamandra in Spain, who are the best children's publisher in Spain.

Hi Neil! Something Silly and a question:

The following page has ALL the songs from the silly 60�s "Songs and Stories about the Justice League" LP (from where the Metamorpho song came from) for download. They�re all just as horrible as that one... no wait, they�re actually worse...

Now, a real question: You mentioned that a 3 hour workprint of Labyrinth existed... was it a rough edit of the movie with everything still on, or a 3 hour version was actually considered? Could you tell by what you saw? Being a Labyrinth fan, I was absolutely shocked to read this. I started daydreaming about extended-edition DVDs of the film coming through my window, flying...(impossible, I know - but to what degree? ;)

Oh, and thank you for making me drool over a future comic release like I haven�t been doing for quite some time. Can�t wait for 1602. :) It looks quite huge and magical from here...

Take care and "Bons Sonhos" ;)

-Victor, Sao Paulo - Brazil

It was a three hour work-print -- a rough edit that I rather doubt that Jim Henson had ever intended anyone else to see.

I'm certain that you'll already know this, but the third edition of "Death: The Time Of Your Life" trade reaches pg. 64 then repeats from pg. 49-64, taking up the story at pg 81. In other words pages 65-80 are nowhere. Unless I'm really missing something about the structure of the story...

Sounds like you've got a misprinted edition, with a repeated signature in it. Your retailer should replace it. (If they won't, write to Bob Wayne at DC Comics if you bought it from a comic shop, or to Rich Johnston if you got it from a book shop.) And I wrote to Rich about this one...

Hi Neil,

I find it very inconvinient that Amazon does not have a complete inventory of the Sandman series in hardcover. I prefer Amazon because not only does it give a 30% discount from the cover price, it is also one of the very few online stores that accept my particular credit card from the Philippines and who is willing deliver it to a third-party address in the U.S. I've already e-mailed customer service to ask them why they don't have the series and they directed me instead to a link on "The Quotable Sandman". You can't imagine how happy I am today to see 2 titles, "The Doll's House" and "World's End" in stock and, needless to say, I purchased it immediately. Is the hardcover Sandman series a current title or is it out-of-print? Any idea why Amazon does not have the whole series readily available? Maybe your publisher can do something about it if you send word their way.

Another question that just occurred to me to ask you is how much do you believe in the existence of all these creatures you've written about? Do you believe any of it at all? I guess answering in the positive may not be very character-building or may even be held against you next time you have to take the witness stand so I'd understand if you choose not to answer. I ask, however, because I have met perfectly sane ordinary people who after knowing them for quite some time have casually mentioned that they have seen ghosts or some other fantastic creatures. I can't say I believe them but knowing them the way I do makes me think that they're not outright liars as well.

Finally, any plans of writing a ghost or horror story or have you written one already which I don't know about?


To which Rich replied:

I have every Sandman hardcover in stock except for A Game of You and that should be arriving shortly. I'll contact Amazon.

And on the whole I don't believe in the existence of anything or anybody I've actually made up, except while I'm writing it, or if they turn up afterwards. I believe in everything else.

And another Amazon question....

Hi Neil,
this possibly FAQ is submitted to you by one of two adventurous Germans - I was wondering, while checking out on "Wolves in the Walls" whether to order the US edition or the UK edition - normally I'd go with the UK edition (preferring the British spelling, especially since I assume that you still write British to have it changed into the American spelling for the US editions). This time though, I am confused by there being not one, but two different US editions (one is about 1 Euro more expensive than the other, seems to have a different ISBN, but the same number of pages and both are listed as hardback - what is the difference??), and a bit miffed at the UK edition being 5 Euros more expensive than the cheapest US edition. The UK edition has a different page count as well. Could you please tell me what difference there is between those editions? I hope that in this case, all the illustrations are available in the UK edition as well?

As far as I know, there's no difference at all between the UK and the US editions of Wolves in the Walls. I believe they'll even be printed in the same print run. And all of the pages are pictures, so none of them will be left out.

And here's one I wish I'd known before I went to the UK...


Thank you so much for taking the time and effort to do the journal! It's probably the closest I'll ever get to chatting with you...

After reading the June 30th entry, I wanted to pass along a URL to information about a hardware device that will allow you to use your computer's modem with a digital phone system. (It's been an absolute necessity for my computer consulting business.)

--Debra Schierbaum