Monday, February 25, 2008

mailbagggery and links

American Gods will be going live to read on the 28th of February.

Some interesting auditory illusions over at

although I didn't quite understand the opening of the article. Apparently the bit on Lady Madonna where it sounds like the Beatles are singing into their hands is not a saxophone, but I don't know anyone who thought it was.

And all the various and sundry comments I've made in this blog about the writing of The Graveyard Book are gathered together at


A few weeks back you posted that you were thinking about going to Tulsa this summer. Are you going to do any public appearances there? And if so, when? I am excited to hear that you finished The Graveyard Book. Looking forward to reading it!


I'll be in Tulsa on June the 28th 2008, and I'll be doing a public event there -- details to follow.

I'll also going to be teaching a week at Clarion -- more properly The Clarion Science Fiction & Fantasy Writers' Workshop at UCSD -- this July (rather nervously, I suspect, as I've never taught before, and have no idea if I'll be any good at it). But you've got people like Geoff Ryman and Kelly Link and Nalo Hopkinson who know what they're doing teaching as well, so even if I'm rubbish it'll be okay.(You have four days left to apply for Clarion, if you've been putting it off.)

Hey Mr. Gaiman!

The University East Anglia have this fairly-famous and pretty reputable Creative Writing course, which was set up by Malcolm Bradbury. I have the option of attending this course, but being not being a British citizen, it requires obscene amounts of money. So my question to you is whether or not you think a workshop of that sort would be worth the investment in time and money. And please, this isn't an 'oh-my-god-if-neil-gaiman-says-it's-good-then-i-must-go-come-hell-or-herpes' (or vice versa) situation, it's just that, other than Malcolm Bradbury, I haven't read the work of any of the authors that came out of that sort of course (a similar one is taught at Warwick). And you're apparently rather big in the whole 'writing' business, so perhaps you might have an opinion or two to share.

So is a course like that, or lack thereof, going to make-or-break an aspiring writer?

Wishing you well,

Liam Kruger

No, of course not. (For proof, look at the careers of the many writers who have not attended Creative Writing Courses at the University of East Anglia. It's most of the writers you can think of. Statistically, it's pretty much all of them. They did fine, didn't they?)

I've never done any Creative Writing courses, but someone who had wrote in back in and talked about them.

I thought you might like this interview with the God of Fountain Pens:

I'm probably not the only one to send you this link, but I couldn't take that chance ;-)

How cool! Here in the US we have Richard Binder of My Christmas present from Henry Selick was a Pelikan pen which Richard had turned into a flexinib, and which I'm waiting for the right thing to come along so i can write a story with it.

Dear Neil, I read with interest that there is a character called Silas in your latest book. I named my son Silas at almost exactly the moment the Da Vinci code came out, and found upon reading it that my son now shared a name with a hulking, blond, albino assassin monk. I am hoping your Silas is of a more child friendly persuasion? I was going to read the Graveyard Book to my Silas if so! Gaby

Silas is our hero's guardian and I'm a huge fan of his.

Hi Neil;

I was wondering, now that The Graveyard Book is done and you have some noodling and minor fine tuning to do, is it smooth sailing to the printers? Or does a book at this stage of it's life have to go through a painful publishing bureaucracy where everyone gives their two cents? Looking forward to the new book.


I've given it to my editors at Harpers in the US and Bloomsbury in the UK and I'm looking forward to finding out what they have to say. I've sent it to friends and I'm looking forward to finding out what they have to say. Any comments that strike me as wise or sensible get acted on, any that don't, don't.

Mostly I want it to be the best book it can possibly be. There isn't any bureaucracy. I think there's a general feeling that we're not going to go with the cover of The Graveyard Book that I posted in
though, because it looks too much like a book that's intended only for young readers, and now it's finished I think we're all realising that this is as much a book for adults as it's a book for younger readers, so I think Dave is going to play around with some different cover ideas...

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