Tuesday, July 24, 2007

One of those long posts that goes all over the place...

Sooner or later, Stardust will have come out, and no-one will be interviewing me about it, and I won't be linking to things about it, and I'll have a life back again, and this won't be the *Stardust movie blog guest starring Me and the San Diego Comic-Con*. But that's what it seems to be tending to turn into right now, for which I apologise.

There are a lot of Stardust preview screenings happening currently around the US. (I think on the sensible assumption that the word of mouth is good from people who've seen it, and that we need a lot more of it.) I'm not going to post them all (I don't find out about most of them) but if you google "free stardust screening" or "stardust preview" or similar you'll find them -- here's one on Thursday in Boston, for example, along with competitions, like this one for free tickets in Canada. Then there's a bunch of extremely strange things I didn't even know about before I started googling just now, like Stardust make-up, and Stardust Jimmy Choo shoes...

(Heidi MacDonald sent me a "review" of the Stardust poster, which I thought was wonderfully silly. It's at

(Here are some Stardust dead princes watching the action. From left to right: Sextus, Tertius, Primus, Secundus, and I can't for the life of me remember whether Julian Rhind-Tutt and David Walliams are Quartus and Quintus or the other way around. Sorry. I checked the IMDB thingie and it was quite useless. It didn't list either of them, but it still has someone listed who, I assume, simply told them she was in it to pad her resume.)

Comicon is nearly here, hurray! I was browsing through the schedule and must say I expected to see Maddy's name in this panel listing. Would she consider doing this sort of thing in the future? She seems to have fun when talking about her Dad!

Sunday, July 29

12:00-1:00 My Dad Makes Comics!— What does a comics career look like from a kid's eye view? Find out with Sky and Winter McCloud, daughters of Scott McCloud (Making Comics); Alexa Kitchen (Drawing Comics is Easy (Except When it's Hard)), daughter of Denis Kitchen; and Brennan Wagner and Amanda Wagner, son and daughter of Matt Wagner (Grendel, Mage) discuss what it’s like living with dad, the cartoonist. Room 5AB

Maddy was meant to be on that panel, and was looking forward to it, but she has to walk down the red carpet for Stardust later that afternoon, and we can't be in both places at once.

She bought a dress yesterday. It has accessories. She's just had her hair cut. I have no doubt that she will outshine me, and I will be so proud.


There's a very sweet UGO interview with me up at although it has the kind of little transcription mistakes that it's all too easy to make on a phone interview. I didn't actually say that the protagonist in The Fermata was "masticating" on naked women, for example, and I think I was talking about Tales of the Norsemen, not the Lensmen...


Cat Mihos has come off tour with Tool to help me survive San Diego. She'll be helping move me around and dealing with all the people who want time with me, and being cruel but fair. (She wants me to tell the whole wide world that she really really really needs a Batgirl costume. Does anyone out there make Batgirl costumes?) As I type this she and Charles Brownstein are busily trying to sort out the logistics of signings at the CBLDF booth on Thursday and Friday.

Hello Neil, I have read your bit about attack dog fans at comicon and dissapointed as I may be, I have decided not to molest,pester, or otherwise stock you at comicon on Friday. If you should perhaps detect me breaking this promise, I will be the wide eyed blonde crying profusely, dressed in black leather....

Sigh. I think people may have taken what I said the wrong way. What I meant was, it's work for me. I don't get to go to San Diego Comic-Con to enjoy the con. I have a bodyguard/crowd handler with me at all times, just to allow me to get from place to place on time. It used to be Kevin Starr and is now Pam Noles (for whom this is the best time of the year in the whole wide world and who offers amazingly important advice for anyone going to the con in this blog entry so read it). I'm not there on holiday and I'm not attending the convention to do things and go to panels (which may be part of my frustration); I'm working. I love meeting people, but it's been 15 years since I was able to really enjoy a San Diego Comic-Con, because there are too many people there.

I don't have "attack dog fans". I have lots of nice readers and there will be an enormous number of people who are coming to San Diego to see me and to see the other Guests and panels, and that's a good thing. I'm not asking people to leave me alone, or not to say hello or whatever. I like it when they do. (Yesterday I happily mentioned on this blog that I'll sign stuff when I can, and suggested that people not drag around copies of Absolute Sandman because it is heavy.)

I'll be working around the clock every day, doing panels, signings, interviews, meetings, promoting the CBLDF and so on. It's an unmissable experience. But -- and this was the point I was making to the Hollywood Reporter question -- it's not something I'd ever do for fun. There's a reason why I've limited doing the full five day Guest of Honour bit to every four or five years: it's exhausting. The last time I did it, in 2003, I wrote, on the Sunday,

Yesterday was fun, although the schedule was slightly punishing, and around 5:30pm I wound up with a clear-cut choice between attending a dinner, two receptions and a meeting before I did the CBLDF late night reading, or going to my hotel room to sleep for a couple of hours. Holly and Pam Noles, who is moving me from place to place at this thing, ganged up on me (it didn't take much) and I went off and slept, before going down to the end of the CBLDF Auction (the Quilt Michelle Made went for $2600) and doing the late night reading.

...and that's mostly what the latter half of that con is like in my memory. A blur of signings and trying to be in two places at once. I don't doubt that this will be very similar.

In previous years I'd take the train there, so I'd get some work done, and take the train home, so I could decompress and spend three days each way not talking to anyone and just watching the world pass by. This time I can't do that -- immediately after the con I fly to the UK to do a Beowulf presentation...

I was perusing some comic-con stuff and noticed under vendors, it said "Neverwhere--Neil Gaiman Merchandise." Just curious as to what this merchandise this might be? Thank you for all the helpful info, too. The Comic-con schedule is a bit overwhelming, so seeing it broken down like that was useful! Good luck this weekend!

It's actually Neverwear, a pun I ought to be more embarrassed about than I am, and it's Cat's project. There will be two tee shirts on sale at the con, an Anansi Boys one, with art from the upcoming (apparently coming sooner than later now) Hill House edition by Dagmara Matuszak, and the Scary Trousers tee shirt with art by Kendra Stout. I may even have a picture of the latter by the time I'm ready to post this.

I've now got more signing information -- this just came in from Charles Brownstein:

The CBLDF will host two very limited members' only signings at its booth. Because these signings are on the show floor we can only accommodate a very small amount of people.

Signing tickets will be offered as a thank you to anyone signing up for new or renewal membership at the Con. Tickets will entitle the bearer to one signature from Neil. People signing up for membership at $100 or better will also receive a set of Black Phoenix Perfume Imps from the Anansi Boys & American Gods collections, while supplies last. Card carrying members with a current membership card (expiration date 7/31/2007 - 7/31/2008) can get a ticket by making any donation to the Fund.

Signings will be:

Thursday 6:00pm
Friday 6:00pm

Please do not line up more than 15 minutes prior to the signing. Because this will occur on the show floor, starting the line up as close to the starting time of the signing will ensure everyone's safety on the floor. Please do not line up if you don't have a ticket. While we'd like to accommodate everyone, we need to strictly limit tickets to ensure that the floor is safe for all attendees and other exhibitors.

Tickets will be available at the CBLDF booth (1831) at the START of each day, on the day that the signing occurs.


(And I think I'm now allowed to say that there will be something cool and Coraline related at 7:00pm on Saturday and that you can get tickets for it from the Focus Pictures booth. (Could this be anything to do with the five minutes of Coraline they mention in the Variety blog will be screened at Comic-con ? I can neither confirm nor deny this. But given how hard I'm hinting, if I were you I'd have suspicions.)


There's a sneak peek at Beowulf in the LA Times, with quotes from me and Steve Starkey at,1,4436117.story?coll=la-headlines-entnews

And finally this came in on the FAQ line. A story of great oddness, in a small sweet kind of way. And it was prefaced with the statement:

I'm getting married in the...

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