Wednesday, May 29, 2002
Having a happy day, thank you very much for asking. American Gods will be on the New York Times paperback List this week at #15 (up from 20, up from 31, up from 45), and I'm about half way through listening to some astonishing songs (which, due to a lack of a working CD player in the house we wound up listening to in a parked car, in the dark, which was amazingly appropriate).

Let's see... My old friend Mark Askwith is one of the secret masters of everything, and since that first day that we met in Gotham City (oh all right, Pinewood Studios) he has done his utmost, first through the much-missed PRISONERS OF GRAVITY TV show, and since then through his work on SPACE: THE IMAGINATION STATION, to ensure that I was kept abreast of cultural trends and plugged into the zeitgeist. So I'm still trying to figure out why he just sent me a link to If any of you happen to run into Mark over the next year (it's more likely if you're Canadian, but given his ubiquity it might happen to any of you) please feel free to ask him.

And from Elfpanties to Sockmonkeys...

Neil, I did a search on Booksense under other items by Neil Gaiman, and it lists a book by the name of Monkey See! Monkey Who! I then went to to find more info about it, and saw that it was about sock monkeys. I remember reading something in your journal about it. If I remember correctly, you said you were going to do a short description about one of the photos. It lists you as one of the AUTHORS. How much writing did you can contribute to this? I don't want to purchase this book to find out that you had written two sentences for the book (My husband has been yelling at me for having too many books). - Cynister

It's more like around 300 words. The book is photos of sock monkeys. Various guest writers have done a description, essay, short story or poem for each monkey. Mine is a sort of rather odd narrative poem about a sock monkey who's led a Weekly World News sort of a life.

Dear Neil,
I am a huge Italian fan of you.
I got Neverwhere as it went out in the English edition, and was planning to buy American Gods.
But since I bought 'Nessundove' (i.e. Neverwhere) in the Italian version as a present to many friends of me, and verified myself it was very well translated, I would like to know if have notice of an upcoming Italian version of 'American Gods'.
If that's going to happen any soon, I imagine I'm going to spare me the economical and mental effort to buy the English version (we could discuss for hours discussing the value of a translation and how much it is an author's work). Could you help me with that?

Easily. It will be coming out in Italy within the next 6 months -- and in France also.

Could you please provide a brief etymology of the word "Shatnerian?" Is this a past-tense usage of an oblique British word, or just a universal adverb for over-emoting and/or bad acting? Just curious. Thanks.

Shatnerian (adj)... rising to the heights of, or at least, approaching the level of thespian artistry of one Wm. Shatner, a Canadian actor with a unique interpretive approach to line reading, dramatic emphasis, pauses and suchlike. (Etym. Coined in his journal by N. Gaiman, author, last night, although I can't have beeen the first one).