Tuesday, May 20, 2003

1602 revelation. Barney and Torture. How Not to Interview Lou Reed. Etc.

It's very late (gone 1:00am), and I should get some sleep, so you'll have to wait for a report on Colmar, Lille and Brussels (my favourite was Brussels, because it was really cosy, and I got to chat with everyone, and I'm tired enough at this point in the tour where I really appreciate ones like that) but I read an article yesterday on the plane to Alsace and felt very sorry for the interviewer: it's an Interview with Lou Reed, by someone who is hoping to bond with him, and is sadly disappointed.

I interviewed Lou in 1992 (I googled it and found it up at, went into it expecting something like the Guardian guy got, and actually really enjoyed it. I kept wanting to give advice to the unfortunate Guardian guy as he did everything he could possibly do wrong, wrong.

I actually answered someone's question about 1602 today. (It's easier just not to answer. My normal answer to "What is it about?" is "It is about 140 pages long", which does not endear me to the person asking). But today someone asked what Marvel characters were in it, and I said "Lots of them," and then he said "I understand it has Man-Thing in it," and I said "Lots of them. But not Man-Thing." Which is a real answer. Man-Thing is not in 1602.

Anyway, Marvel are getting a bit more informative than I am, in their own way, and just e-mailed me to tell me that there's some early information up at It's still a teaser, I'm afraid. But at least you can see what Andy and Richard are up to on the art (it's all taken from panels of issue #1).

You can get a sneak peek at the Frank Quitely poster of the Endless here. He painted the final story in ENDLESS NIGHTS -- Destiny's -- and he did such an amazing job we asked him if he'd like to do a poster, the first since Mike Dringenberg's Still Life With Cats over a decade ago...

Meanwhile, I read this article on the train to Lille today and was fascinated by the idea of US intelligence operatives being "forced to listen to the Barney 'I love You' song," something that probably ought to be specifically outlawed by the Geneva Convention. Later in the article, though, we learn that "it's a myth that being tortured is effective. The best way to win someone over is to treat them kindly," which makes me wonder if the forced playing of the Barney "I Love You" song is having deep, insidious and unconsidered effects on US intelligence agents.


Hi Neil,
I was wondering if you have any more info on the Novello Festival. The title, "An Novello Evening with Neil Gaiman" seems a bit vague. And the website doesn't offer much information about the event.

Thank You so much for coming down South! We don't get to see you enough as far as I'm concerned!

Thanks Again - Ned

It will be a talk, a reading, a Q&A period and probably a signing of some kind. I intuit this, mind you, based on the available evidence and the article Lucy Anne linked to over at The Dreaming.


Hello Neil. This is not actually a FAQ, but i wanted to let you know that i wrote a brief report on your appearance in Torino last saturday. I've posted it on my blog
Thanks for everything.
Too bad you didn't sing the rat song (i asked you ;) )

alessandro bonino

It's a matter of choosing your moment, I'm afraid. In the hall I was speaking in, with the microphone in my hand, drunk with power, I might have done it. In a walkway of the main Book Festival area, in the middle of an impromptu and unorganised signing, surrounded by people thrusting books and comics at me, while I was trying my best to sign as many of them as I could, the possibility that I would stop and sing the rat song was way below zero. Alas.

If you're curious about what it sounds like, you can always go into and click on one of the rats as they nip across the screen. Each time you click a rat, wait, and a verse of the rat song will be sung...