Thursday, June 27, 2013

Neil Gaiman drew me an owl

A few months ago Cynde posted on Facebook:

Just got my ticket to see Neil Gaiman in June

To which I commented:

Looks like I'm coming out to Phoenix in June

To which she commented:

Please do.  I have an extra ticket.


So I went out to Phoenix to meet one of my all-time favorite authors ever. It may surprise you that as much as I love books I've never been to a reading.  I have kind of an irrational fear of meeting people I really admire because it's just too fraught with danger -- namely, me doing my best impression of a weeping mute. I think I've told you the story of that one time I happened upon S.E. Hinton doing a book signing at the West Covina library (I was picking up tax forms, I think) and I could not bring myself to get in the line to meet her because I loved her too much.  The Outsiders was a really, really important book to me growing up and the thought of trying to express to her just how much it all meant terrified me.  All I could envision was me standing in front of her, holding back tears, and squeaking out, "" So I just stood there for twenty minutes, watching her sign books, like a creeper.

But I have no such childhood connection to Neil Gaiman so I felt confident that I could get a grip. And I did. 

I had high expectations (I didn't even try to manage them) and they were all met.  He was just like his books:  funny, witty, sweet, smart.  He read from his new book and a forth-coming picture book and both were great.  Plus, I've decided I want him to read everything to me - health labels on cereal boxes, street signs, the manual to my printer.  And he told stories and answered questions.  And then the signing started.  He told us that in the last 4 weeks he has signed over 20,000 books. He'll do an event at night and then travel to the next city and waiting for him in his hotel room are 500-1000 books to sign.  Fatigue, right?  So imagine how wonderful it was that after he had signed books all day and then sat and signed more books for 2 hours with many more hours to go, he was friendly and lovely to talk to.  I mean, seriously, he could not have been nicer.  He even drew me an owl.  And I wasn't a weeping mute.  I talked like a human being without a tear in my eye.  Maybe one of the best nights ever.


Camille said...

Um hello! ANTM is calling, they want you. You 2 are babes!

Cynde said...

It was definitely one of the best nights ever. And, it was just perfect seeing one of my all-time favorite authors with my very best friend! Love you, sis! p.s. Camille is right...we look pretty fantastic in that photo. Foxy!

Kylea said...

Reading this I couldn't stop thinking of this clip we had just watched yesterday. I think it shows your sentiment perfectly.

Rach said...

I love his books. A lot. I think Good Omens: The Nice and Accurate Prophecies of Agnes Nutter, Witch, is one of my favorite books. I have rarely laughed that much out loud while reading (Angus Thongs aside). It's nice to know he's a pleasant man even when he's exhausted and in a foreign land. And he even mustered the strength to draw you an owl, which means he's extra fabulous. I'm proud of you for not turning into a weeping mute. I was 10 feet away from Bon Jovi, and I'm pretty sure he was sending his alarm signal to his bodyguards when he saw me. I can't handle being around anyone famous. And I agree that the picture is fantastic.

Anonymous said...

Perhaps I missed it but I need to know how of all mystical beasts, he drew you an owl. This feels significant in a Potter/Twin Peaks way, neither of which involve him in the least.