It's SPRING! I mean, it's warm and the trees are budding, the crocuses are blooming and the birds are probably singing although they cannot be heard over the howling and grumbly barking of a large white dog who has just been given his Spring Bath and put out into his pen in the garden to dry, and wishes to alert the appropriate authorities. Definitely spring.
So on Monday the 27th I'm doing a Maryland Event at Washington College, Chestertown, for PEN World Voices. And there was obviously a bit of confusion about the event, and suddenly it was listed as SOLD OUT which upset and puzzled those people who had been going to go there and had just seen it listed as a free event on the internet with no information about reservations, and people started writing in to complain to me by the score, and I asked the fabulous Caro Llewellyn if there was anything that could be done, because it was looking like the number of upset people was going to outnumber the happy people.
And things have now changed: the venue is now in a 1000 seat location. Those of you who already have tickets will get to sit in the front few rows. Now new tickets will go out -- just turn up.
This is the link to the current sold out event, but it may have been fixed by the time you read this: http://www.pen.org/viewmedia.php/prmMID/3190/prmID/1831
The email from Josh, who is running the event, says:
The event will now be held in the Cain Gymnasium, Washington College,
Same time and place. Reservations are not required.
I hope this makes people happier.
Please come, because if I'm now talking to a mostly empty hall I'll feel silly for having made them change it.
There -- they just blogged it: Details at http://bitlit.typepad.com/bitlit/2009/04/attention-changes-to-417-night-with-neil-gaiman-event.html
And there will be a free event in New York at 6:30 on Thursday Night April 30th called Leaps and Bounds, Fits and Starts: The Evolution of a Children’s Book Writer with Mariken Jongman, Shaun Tan and me on the panel, moderated by Andrea Davis Pinkney, in the Scholastic Auditorium, 557 Broadway; and a $10 ticket event on Saturday May 2nd Coraline, Sandman: Books and Imagination: A Conversation with Neil Gaiman at The Great Hall at Cooper Union: 7 East 7th Street (and tickets to all three events that afternoon can be had for cheap -- Shaun Tan, Emmanuel Guibert, David Polonsky with Jonathan Ames on one panel, and Adrian Tomine in conversation with Yoshihiro Tatsumi on the other.)
And the second-biggest piece of news is this:
THE GRAVEYARD BOOK won the 2009 Indies Choice Award as Best YA book. This is the Award that used to be called the BookSense Award, and it's given by the members of the American Booksellers Association.
I was thrilled -- even more thrilled when I realised that I would be in New York around then anyway then for the CORALINE Musical Opening Night, so I'll just head out a couple of days earlier.
The last time I was nominated, they did not tell you who had won ahead of time, and Michael Chabon and I lost to Cornelia Funke, and were all three of us very happy about it, particularly as we were given huge bags of Levenger swag (you can read about it here but ignore everything in the first paragraph).
Right. Now, I have to reread and send off my Newbery Speech, then get back to writing Metamorpho for Mike Allred and Wednesday Comics. The first page of which looks like this: