Tuesday, October 30, 2012

All my yesterday. Also a mouse.

Almost 25 years ago, researching the Sandman story that would become A Game Of You, I read up on New York and Hurricanes, and how very ill-prepared Manhattan is, and how vulnerable.

I worry about my East Coast friends, and I'm glad that Sandy isn't a full hurricane. Stay safe.

Yesterday morning started early with the Today Show on BBC Radio 4.  You can read about it and hear about it at Philip Pullman and I talked about fairy tales, as a warm up to talking about them onstage at the Cambridge Theatre last night.

I went out to lunch with my editor and publisher at Bloomsbury books, talking about next year's FORTUNATELY, THE MILK (the silliest book I've ever written. Also the timey-wimiest. Also it has a bit with dinosaurs on a space ship, although was written long long before Doctor Who put dinosaurs on a space ship, and was actually vaguely inspired by a line about dinosaurs in a space ship I put in Good Omens, long long long ago). The English edition will be illustrated by an English illustrator, the American by an American. I vaguely hope this will continue to hold true all around the world....

After lunch I looked at my phone, and learned that Philip Pullman had gone to hospital, and that the Cambridge Theatre would now be me and someone else.

In the end the part of Philip Pullman was played by three other people: author Meg Rosoff, interviewer and moderator Rosie Boycott, and (special guest Philip Pullman) Audrey Niffenegger, who read The Three Snake Leaves from Philip's Grimm Tales.

I finished the evening by reading "Click-Clack the Rattlebag" to everyone, and telling them they could get it free from Audible. Then I did a signing, which was one of the mad kind, because there were many hundreds of people to sign for before the theatre closed. Did it all, stumbled away, hugged friends, ate dinner, bumped into more friends (including special surprise what-the-hell-are-you-doing-here friends Margaret Cho and Andrew O'Neill), and got home knackered but happy, throat sore from talking too much.

The housemouse that's living in the place I'm staying has ignored all the humane traps I put down and instead ate most of a probar and an entire packet of airplane peanuts from inside my jacket pockets. It is wiser than I am, at least in the ways of mice and men.

I went to see Arthur Darvill and a wonderful cast in Our Boys at the Duchess Theatre. Funny, sad, moving, relevant -- and playing to a house that seemed about half full, which seemed wrong. (Arthur has promised me music.) If you're in London, go and see it.

Public Radio's Selected Shorts has done a Poe Special, and they interviewed me about Poe when I was in Charlotte N.C. last month on the Unchained Tour. You can read about it at

(I wonder why I can't easily embed audio into Blogger any longer. I spend too much time on Tumblr, and then I come back to Blogger, and miss the simple easy Tumblr functionality.)

SO FAR "Click-Clack The Rattlebag", the free audible download, has raised about $31,000 via the US website for Donor's Choose, and about £5,700 via the UK website for Booktrust.

There's been a fair amount of confusion and problems with people signing into or signing up for Audible or getting it to play, for which apologies: I think the biggest problem with something like this is the speed with which it was put together, and I appreciate those of you who have made it work.

The story is up and free for another 36 hours. If you are in the UK it's, for most of the rest of the world it's (Germany is

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