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An Evening With Neil Gaiman, alternatively titled, ohgodohgodohgod. 
15th-Nov-2003 01:34 am
Reborn - Yamamoto CHIBITA
Went with risax today for dinner and a Gaiman evening. He was doing a reading of his latest book, The Wolves In the Walls.

risax brought me to the Malaysia Kopitiam. It was, as she says, exactly like a local food court. Towards the end of our meal there, they played Di Da Di. Oh, the blasphemy of that against the rest of this entry. Even the music was mood-perfect.

Had a most interesting conversation with risax. All I can put words to is this, risax, I wish I had half your courage, and I am very, very happy for you, and I am not alone. Furthermore, I will heed your advice and buy a great many mechanical pencils when I am back home, because over here, they cost $4.50 for even the simplest instrument.

After which we went to a bookstore where I bought “The Wake” from the Sandman series, for probably twice what it costs back home. risax told me to console myself by thinking of inelastic demand, but I told her all it did was remind me of my own desperation. Out of all the Sandman books, the storyline of “Fables and Reflections” I love the most, but the art of “The Wake”, I adore. Ratal, I will inflict it on all of you when I get back.

There was an absolutely massive queue when we got there, and we’d arrived ten minutes before the doors opened, forty minutes before the event was scheduled to begin. The Goth percentage was perhaps 1%, if that, which surprised me. Saw many people wearing Gryffindor scarves, which I discovered, on enquiry, can be purchased from Marks and Spencer. This calls for an investigation. ; ) The Queuing Ones spoke of, variously, Gaiman’s books (of course), Lord of the Rings and Harry Potter, so I knew I was in the right place.


We had a most intriguing MC/interviewer. One of his closing remarks in his introductory speech to the audience was, “I want to say how physically attractive I find all of you, except some of you, who are f**king ugly, and you know who you are! I am not going to point you out!” to much hilarity.

And then he introduced us to “the man responsible for the words”.

Gaiman, of course.

The Reading Proper

The Wolves in the Walls

Here’s an excerpt, if you’re interested. This is short Gaiman bio, with a better picture of him than most others I’ve seen. Here’s one for Dave McKean.

So here goes the story! Or rather, the lines in it I loved so much I wrote them down.

Lucy hears the wolves in the walls, and tells her father. So her father tells her:

“You have an overactive imagination.”
“It’s wolves,” said Lucy.

“Bats”, said Lucy’s brother.
“Do you think it’s bats.”
“No, I think you are.”
And he proceeded to laugh for a long time at his own joke, which wasn’t really very good.

“He (a teacher at school) teaches us about wolves and things.”

On considering the possibility that there may be vampire bats in the house:
“I shall be sure to sleep with my neck exposed!” said Lucy’s brother. “I’ll be able to fly, and sleep in a coffin, and never have to go to school in the daylight again!”

Lucy shook her head at this sad display of ignorance.

Naturally, no one believes Lucy. So of course, the wolves take over the house, and the family goes to live at the bottom of the garden. Where they ate “little apple pies with extraordinarily hot middles”.

And the wolves in their house were:

“dancing wolfish dances up the stairs and down again”.
“wolves coming down the stairs. They had been eating jam and toast in front of the TV, and were coming back for more.”
“There was a huge wolf asleep on her bed, and he was wearing her socks.”
“One of the wolves was playing her brother’s video game, and beating all the high scores.”

Gaiman has the most gorgeous deadpan voice when he chooses to. In a sense, like anyasy. ; )

The story has a delightfully dry sense of humor about it.

The queue was massive, and soon an official had to announce that we were only allowed to sign two books, due to time constraints. risax was having books signed for herself and homura, and I had a book for myself, and, unfortunately, A4 paper. Which I with much trepidation wanted signed for anyasy.

Queue, of course, took ages, and soon the staff were handing out water. A man asked me if I wanted to stand with risax so that he could stand with his girlfriend, which was all good.

I asked risax, if I fainted, could she get the items signed for me?

And we had our books signed. And then I handed over the blank paper, and asked the lady there, “Can I have the paper signed?”

“Sure!” she said, and passed the paper on to Dave McKean.

“Blank paper!” he said. (Or something to that effect. Forgive me if I cannot remember precisely what. I was not quite in a state of mind to think properly.) “I put my signature on it, and someone else does the art, and it goes for auction on e-bay!”

Me at moment: *intense Dobby-esque self-abuse*

And then he picks up his pen, and he begins to draw. More than simply signing the paper, he’s drawing something.

So he passes the paper over to Neil Gaiman, who says, with some surprise, “He drew something! He never draws anything!” Gaiman looks up. “You must have smiled at him really nicely,” he says.

And then he takes up his pen, and he begins to draw, too.

And he drew what I believe was Dream.

It’s more than a signature. It’s something they did, especially for the occasion.

Mind was quite blank, so it was quite a good thing that risax suggested calling anyasy at the moment. I believe I got lazydreamweaver on the phone, who, quite rightly, told anyasy, “You have a psychotic woman on the line for you!”

Following conversation cut for much incoherence on my part, but eventually the combined efforts of risax and I managed to get the message across.

anyasy, I cannot wait to get these to you.

Strangely, I can’t feel anything right now, probably because I feel too much. I sit at the computer and I want to write about it all, but absolutely nothing comes to mind because I’m too far gone. I can’t find the words to describe what this is like; it’s not like finding that Shakespeare wrote a sonnet for someone just like you, because it’s not that at all; what I think is, it is like when someone you have the wildest crush on kisses you back, and that’s how I feel.

I am deeply glad that I was with risax, because she understands what this all means to me. Because she was there, and because she knows what this means to me. In other words, she knows what this kiss means.

Am completely messed up now, and not making any sense at all. I want to do homework, for some strange reason, because it would give me something to do with these hands that do not seem to know what to do with themselves, and with this mind that has probably done the lightbulb equivalent of blowing a fuse, so excuse the dramatics, I shall try to control myself.

No, happy now. IceAngel called me. Handphone burnt my cheek, but it was worth every one of the 34 minutes.


On an equally important note, la_muerta, THANK YOU. You have made my morning. *HUGS* Also, Draco breathing life into that paper crane is the gayest thing I’ve ever seen.

Quicktime froze on Snape the Boggart. Idly, I wonder how many sleeping students my shrieks of wild amusement awoke.

I wanted to write about the interview conducted during the Gaiman session, but was waylaid at 12 midnight by giaan and Sam knocking on my door. They’d gone out to Leicester Square at 11pm at night for Haagen Dasz, and got back to the Hall at 12, then popped by my room. They made me guess where they’d been, and I DID. ^_^ After which I showed the Azkaban trailer to Sam with much glee, and we watched all the Moulin Rouge trailers I have in my computer. And talked. And talked.

And – it’s 1.30am! They’ve just left, and I am feeling strangely tired, but perhaps that’s because I went to Leicester Square and Oxford Street with Farzanah Bloom and Gian Reeves. (They call me Depp. Merry’s Greenleaf.) Will LJ about interview and the wonderful audience asking questions about Neil Gaiman and Dave McKean. Like the guy who asked, “We’ve heard all about you being the old married couple – we want to hear about the young, courting couple!”

So, yeah. ; )
14th-Nov-2003 05:42 pm (UTC)
15th-Nov-2003 08:28 am (UTC)

You got to see Weird Al! And drew Padawan Al for him! I couldn't do that!
15th-Nov-2003 03:58 pm (UTC)
True. Wish I said more to him though. =D
15th-Nov-2003 07:42 pm (UTC)
We all wish we'd been able to ^_^

I know I couldn't have said much to Gaiman! Not much mind left, after the XDXDXD had worked its way through...
15th-Nov-2003 12:30 am (UTC)
All this talk about neil gaiman and other fantasy related things really makes me feel like picking up one of em to read!!!

or rather, put em on my reading list together with the Professoreee's "1984" and "clockwork orange" plus "The lord of the rings" plus this genetics book I got for my bday plus "The affluent society"...


lend me some to read, sweetheart.

and i'm glad you're having fun.

and i can't wait to see my presents you soon!

*snerks madly*

eh just kiddin bout e prezzies. i wanna see you more than i wanna see my prezzies hahahahaha.
15th-Nov-2003 08:28 am (UTC)
You haven't picked up a fantasy book yet?! *HORROR* PICK IT UP! And before the rest of the real-world books!


I can't wait to see you either!
17th-Nov-2003 05:26 am (UTC)
ehhh shure lend me one then. *glomp* =)
16th-Nov-2003 07:40 am (UTC)
Good! I haven't read them either. Let's get onto it when aefallen gets back here! ^_^
15th-Nov-2003 02:31 am (UTC)
Woah! They drew something specially for you! Now we all know next time we want to get something more than a signature - give blank paper ^^ We should do that if we ever get to see AR, since he has a degree in graphic art.

*hugs your Quicktime* it froze on Boggart Snape! *laughs* Eh. you should have heard me... I must be the only person to have been induced to crazy squeeing by the news.
15th-Nov-2003 08:30 am (UTC)
They drew something specially for anyasy... *impish grin*

YES! Now I shall religiously carry A4 Paper around whenever I go celebrity-hunting! ; )

AR has a graphic art degree? The things I do not know about the Professor are shameful in their enormity.

*HUGS* I'd squee too! *huge grin*
15th-Nov-2003 07:00 pm (UTC)
yeah, he started out as an artist before going into acting... but then again few ppl know that ^^
15th-Nov-2003 07:41 pm (UTC)
You do! ^_^

And now, thanks to you, I do, too! ; )
16th-Nov-2003 07:35 am (UTC)
And me! *nods*
15th-Nov-2003 03:36 am (UTC)
Tell me how much is that Gryffy scarf if you see it!!
15th-Nov-2003 08:30 am (UTC)
I'll remember to check it out! ; )
15th-Nov-2003 10:01 am (UTC) - whoa.
wah, that's so cool! congrats on 133t 'getting cool autographs' skillz. ^^

i agree, blank paper is the way to go ;)
15th-Nov-2003 02:52 pm (UTC) - Re: whoa.
*beams* Thank you! ; ) And am sure that if you were here, you'd do something like that, too, except cooler ^_^
16th-Nov-2003 03:35 am (UTC) - Re: whoa.
neheh, don't count on it..have very strong feeling i'd probably just turn bright red and scoot away the moment it's over. sigh. ^^

i like your guts tho. wanted to get ashkenazy and min lee to sign on the back of my readings cos i didn't bring along enough money to buy the programme...then chickened out cos i felt too.....cheapskate =p
15th-Nov-2003 05:04 pm (UTC)
*cue squealing*

Oh. My. Gosh. I cannot believe you have Gaiman's autograph. And his drawing. And McKean's drawing. And you got to speak to them!

*muchly, muchly jealous*
15th-Nov-2003 07:43 pm (UTC)
*hugs you* I wish you'd been there too!

And it's great to hear from you!

I didn't get to tell Gaiman about Crowley/Aziraphale, though ; )

Though I get the feeling he wouldn't have been surprised.
24th-Feb-2004 06:47 pm (UTC) - ^_^
(then it works.)
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