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Tuesday, October 12, 2004

I think I'm somewhere in Pennsylvania

Sunday was spent in Washington DC. I took my son to the Spy Museum, and finished an essay on several Batman covers for DC comics' Bob Greenberger (AKA Kate Greenberger's dad), which has sort of turned into an essay on the nature of Batman as a gothic hero. (And I need to make clear on the final draft that that does not mean a Byronic hero.) (Which reminds me... two years ago in http://www.neilgaiman.com/journal/2002/04/well-this-is-simultaneously-question.asp Atara Stein asked about Dream as a Byronic Hero. She's now completed her book on the subject of Byronic Heroes, and it's a deliciously readable jaunt through high and low culture -- http://www.siu.edu/~siupress/titles/f04_titles/stein_byronic.htm)

Yesterday was spent in the car, or signing things. There wasn't really any middle ground. I went to Pittsburgh, signed many hundreds of the original Miracleman comics for New Dimension Comics' owner Todd McDevitt, who bought an Eclipse archive, and who has promised to donate much of his takings to the CBLDF, then did a signing at his store for a few hundred very nice people. Then I got into the Mini and, because I was exhausted but not sleepy, drove on for an hour or so.

And now I'm awake. I do love the way that American chain motels have started offering wireless internet as an inducement: I fell asleep last night to a BBC radio 7 program on Flanders and Swann (it's at http://www.bbc.co.uk/bbc7/listenagain/wednesday/ but only for one more day).

Neil. I am such an idiot. I rushed to the post office in August to rush in my entry for Fiddler's Green Con so that I could participate in the Have Dinner with a Guest of Honor Lottery, and then, when the email came to respond, what did I do? Missed it. (Work, you see) So much anticipation, so much rushing about for a small chance to have sushi (my fav!) and chat with you, and I blew it. I haven't felt this much regret over something I failed to do since childhood. What to do? I count myself thrilled and lucky that I will be attending Fiddler's Green none the less, and wondered, being a writer who visits your musings daily for little bits of precious dropped threads, how I could go about chatting with you ever so briefly just one on one at this convention. I know, I know, five hundred people, one you and everyone clamoring to speak to the creator of the Dream King, if ever such a thing is possible.

Well, right now - unless there's a last minute surge of people, which there probably won't be -- it's looking like it'll be closer to 200 people than 500. And I'm planning to make myself as accessible as possible. Your best bet is to just come and find me, or just ask. I don't have enough of a sense of the schedule yet to be able to say "I'll be free at such and such a time", but I'll be there, probably in the bar or a comfortable public space, through the whole thing, when I'm not either on panels or helping with the auction, or asleep. That's my plan, anyway.

(The Fiddler's Green website is at http://www.fiddlersgreencon.org/)

Dear Mr. Gaiman:I know you have provided the link to the third-party 1602 annotations in the past, but some of us latecomers can't find it anymore. Would you mind reposting this information? Regards,Mark

I'm very happy to: Jess Nevins' annotations for the first 3 chapters of 1602 can be found starting at http://www.geocities.com/jessnevins/16021.html, Julian Darius is up to issue 4 at http://www.sequart.com/marvel1602.htm and then ther's Jason Pomerantz doing the whole thing, and a final wrap-up interview with me at http://cwn.comicraft.com/cgi-bin/index.cgi?column=mysteries.

I was really impressed by the 1602 oversized hardback, which I saw (and signed a lot of copies for people) this weekend -- it looks good, and at a cursory glance the corrections I asked for have almost all been made. It seems a lot more readable. (Several people have pointed out that Marvel's house style "spine" means you may have to look for it in the "M" shelves of bookshops rather than in the "G" shelves next to the Sandmans.)

In the story Facade in "Dream Country," you used the character "Element Girl" which you did not create. How did you get the rights to do that?--Madeleine.

I asked my editor. Someone asked me last night if I minded that things have been done with "my" characters since I stopped doing Sandman, and I said that I knew the rules when I went in. (And have always been gratified at how much people have respected my wishes and kept their hands off some of my characters.) DC Comics is a huge sandbox. You can play with toys that other kids left behind, before you, but you'll leave the toys you brought behind you when you leave.
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