Thursday, June 27, 2013

So, I Met Neil Gaiman...

It's a long recap, but this is how it went. The night I met Neil Gaiman...




The will call window opened at 5:30, the lobby was set to open at 6 and the event started at 7pm. We arrived at the Majestic Theatre right around 5:20 and the line was starting to wrap around the building. We jumped in, and ended up being in good shape. We got our tickets and copy of The Ocean at the End of the Lane at 6:00 and since we had VIP tickets, we got to choose any seats in the first five rows. We were in row 2 with only one row and the orchestra pit between us and NEIL!





1,500 people attended. It was in a huge theater so it was impressive to look back and see full balconies for an author's reading. The event was late starting because there were still people in line trying to get in and seated. 

It began about 7:30. Gaiman gave some background insight into the writing of The Ocean at the End of the Lane and expressed that Dallas is special to him in relation to this book because he finished drafting it in Dallas coffee shops while his wife was mixing her album with a producer here. 

Before he started reading, he warned us to check and make sure our cell phones were silenced because, "It's Texas and someone might shoot you." He read from one of the opening chapters of Ocean, and it was just lovely and funny and wonderful. Buttery English accent and all. 

Next, he did Q-and-A. There was a super-thick stack of questions. Someone asked why he wears so much black, and he expounded on the fact that black clothes always match. :) 

I can't remember all the questions--I have the retention of a peanut--but there were lots of laughs. The last question in Q-and-A was from a 10-year-old girl who asked which of his books is his favorite. He said right now it's The Ocean at the End of the Lane because it's so personal to him. But he said he has a new book coming out in September, and that one will probably be his favorite when it comes out.

And that was a great segue, because he READ FROM THE UPCOMING BOOK!!! He said he couldn't help himself because since this is his last tour, he wouldn't have the chance to read from it in a setting like this again. He said the Majestic Theatre was so beautiful it was a perfect setting to read in and he wanted to do the voices. 



The new book, called Fortunately, the Milk, is about the heroic things dads do. Namely, going out to get milk for their kids' cereal whenever it's necessary. After the father in the book has been delayed, he expounds to his children about how he was abducted by aliens, snatched by pirates, and flew in a hot air balloon with a stegosaurus. But fortunately, he still had the milk. 

It was AWESOME. His voices are so dang cute. Many many laughs. 

So after the readings and the Q-and-A ended, they started tagging the books for the signing and giving out wrist bands. We were the second row to go back and get signed. Unfortunately, there were no posed photos because of the sheer amount of people in attendance. I think they assumed more people would leave and not stay for the signing, but they obviously don't know Neil Gaiman fans and Neil's marathon devotion to signing.

The approach.

So we went through the line. David took pics of my approach. I got Ocean inscribed to David and I, and The Graveyard Book was signed.

CONVERSATION!
I thanked him for taking the time to sign and told him he was a trooper to sign for so many people. His response,"I'm flattered that so many people have come out." I also thanked him for reading from the new book and he totally stopped what he was doing and glowed! He said, "Oh I just couldn't help myself. I had to do it. The theater is beautiful and I love doing the voices."

Signing, signing, signing...
We were done and on our way home by 9:30, but according to his Twitter, the signing ran until 2:23am. He broke David Sedaris's record for a previous year's appearance. 

So yeah. High as a kite was me! I love him even more in person, and I ADORED The Ocean at the End of the Lane. It's my new fave, hands-down. 

To learn more about the genesis of this novel, read the story from the Dallas Morning News


Have you met any authors? How was your experience? This was only my second time!



Find my video gushing about this book and meeting Neil Gaiman below!






49 comments:

  1. Until 2:23am? Wow, that's awesome. It's nice they waited until everyone in the queue was seated, too. Sounds like a great evening :)

    I've met a few authors, but not in this setting, so the experiences were very different.

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    1. Isn't it?? I was totally shocked by that (and SO glad I was in a front seat!).

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  2. Awe...I love reading about people meeting authors they love! (I like to live vicariously through those of you who are actually brave enough to talk people you don't know. :P ) I'm so glad you had such a wonderful time, Andi!

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    1. LOL, Debi! It was scary. I didn't know quite what to say, but he was very personable. Thank you!

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  3. That moment when you say something and it really strikes a chord...that's just awesome. Loved every moment of this recap!! I love meeting authors (and singers!) this way. :D

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    1. It IS awesome!!! I had no idea what to say, but that worked nicely. Which authors have you met, Amanda? Or which were your favorite?

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  4. What fun!!!! What a gorgeous theatre too!

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    1. It's one of my favorite theatres. It was the first place I ever saw a live performance, and it was totally memorable.

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  5. Wow, that is devotion to signing. I love it when authors respect and appreciate their readers like that. I can tell by your smile that you were giddy while you were in line. :-)

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    1. Isn't it??? He's awesome. Seriously amazing, though I see why he won't be touring anymore! I was totally giddy. lol

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  6. Wow! Sounds AMAZING and he sounds AWESOME!! I'm definitely getting a copy of Ocean and reading it ASAP!! I loved the pics! And I loved how excited you sounded about the whole thing - makes me excited about Gaiman's works :)

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    1. Yayyy! I hope you love it, Nadia! It was a memorable experience, and I'm so glad I loved the book. I considered not having Ocean inscribed in favor of something else, but now I'm glad because it makes it all the more precious.

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  7. I'm still so depressed that I wasn't able to get tickets to his Atlanta stop this past weekend. And the fact that he's not going to be touring anymore makes me sad, but I understand. So glad you had such an amazing experience! I, too, have rarely met any authors (which seems crazy). I met Erin Morgenstern last year and babbled on about how my bookclub loved her so much. She might have looked slightly terrified!

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    1. I'm so sorry you weren't able to go! I would've blubbered away if I'd met Erin Morgenstern. Seriously. Would've been starstruck. Almost was with Neil.

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  8. How fun!! (You cracked me up with your peanut reference, ha ha!)

    Gaiman fans are so loyal and fab, I love that. And he's a big peach for sticking around and signing for so long.

    I went to my very first author event this week. It was awesome and I don't think I drooled on the poor man. (William Kent Krueger)

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    1. LOL, Jennifer. It's so true. Gaiman fans are totally loyal (and fun to watch!). And good for you re: holding back the drool. LOL

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  9. I LOVE your vlogs. I now want to read The Ocean at the End of the Lane. Like you, I've enjoyed Gaiman's work geared toward children a bit more than his grownup stuff, so I'm glad to hear your endorsement of this one!

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    1. Thank you!!! I'm glad you like 'em. I never know if I should really include them or not. lol I hope you love Ocean as much as I did.

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  10. So cool! And wow, that IS marathon signing. Glad you guys enjoyed it.

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    1. Isn't it??? I was just amazed, but NO WONDER he's ending his touring after this year. Wowza.

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  11. SO AMAZINGLY COOL!!!! I love the convo you had with him during signing. Green with envy right now! :)

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    1. OMGosh, I was BEAMING when we left there. Pure joy.

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  12. I can't imagine the physical therapy he'll need on his signing hand now! Crazy and looks like a great night.

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    1. LOL, I know! It's unbelievable and kind of crazy. He said when he's done with a signing his hand is all cramped up into a claw and he doesn't understand plainspoken English words anymore.

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  13. Your enthusiasm is contagious! I'll confess that I'm a total Gaiman newbie and know nothing about him (beyond how beloved he is!), but I can definitely appreciate meeting a favorite author and the accompanying thrill. I met Jennifer Weiner a few years back and started chatting with her, and somehow I wound up giving her my blog business card (!). I doubt she ever had time to check it out, but just speaking to her personally and snapping a photo was so cool.

    Beyond that, I met Terry Brooks with my dad years back (he's a huge fan!) and once stood in line for four hours to meet Ree Drummond, the Pioneer Woman. Holy cow. That was fun but I will never do it again (and I don't think I could ever bribe Spence to get involved with that mess, either!).

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    1. Oh I would've burbled and made an embarrassment of myself meeting Jennifer Weiner.

      You should totes try some Gaiman, Meg. The Graveyard Book or Ocean would be perfecto for you, I think.

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  14. I haven't met any authors but, my dad met Francine Pascal (you know, Sweet Valley High?) when we lived in Italy. He helped her on board the ship. She introduced herself but told him he wouldn't know who she is because she writes children's books, and he laughed and said, "I know who you are! My daughter has every one of your books!"

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    1. That is an AWESOME story, Monika! I love that your dad said that. I bet she loved it too.

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  15. Yay! Glad you had such a great experience; i'm nervous myself. I believe the only author i've met at this point was Bruce Campbell (Ash from the Evil Dead movies). That is, i met him when he was signing one of his books; he was really funny!

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    1. That's awesome, Melanie! I bet Campbell was a hoot. Don't be nervous. It'll be super fantastic.

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  16. I went to the reading and signing session he had in Miami this past Sunday. It was an amazing experience! We waited for about 3 hours to have our books signed, but it was totally worth the wait.

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    1. Jocelyn, you are a trooper! As I was looking back at the crowd, I thought to myself, "How long WOULD I wait?" I have the patience of a fruit fly, so it's hard to say.

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  17. He was there signing until 2:30a.m.? Wow, I'm so impressed. Love it when an author really shows his appreciation for the fans! That's awesome. When you posted your pics I kept thinking where are they because I forgot that some Arts & Letters Live events aren't at the DMA. Sounds like a wonderful experience!

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    1. YES! Isn't that pure insanity? But awesome for the fans. He really is delightful and gracious.

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  18. This is so awesome! I need to get a job and start going to Dallas for awesome events like this! I need to read Ocean, it sounds so good! I'm glad you had such a wonderful time!!

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    1. LOL, yes you do! I get annoyed with Dallas for not being more literary (just ain't gonna happen), but it made my heart SING to see so many enthusiastic readers and fans in one place.

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  19. He seems like such a good guy. Everyone who's posted about meeting him has said how lovely and polite and engaged he is at his signings. Which I'm not sure I would be! It sounds exhausting!

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  20. Oh my gosh you got to meet him!!! I got to meet him in 2010 and he really was incredibly wonderful. If you haven't read Stardust, which I'm guessing from your video you haven't, I would recommend it.

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  21. He sounds charming. So cool that you got to see such a wonderful author and chat with him! Love the answer about black clothing.

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  22. Amazing!!! I know you're a huge fan and have been consistently tweeting about this so yay!!!! It's always exciting to meet someone you really like!!!

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  23. WAY COOL. I'm so jealous. It would have been incredible to see and meet him.

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  24. Awesome! He seems like a great person. So glad you were able to meet him.

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  25. I've never read Neil Gaiman, but everyone seems to love him! I'm not usually a big YA/ sci-fi/ fantasy reader, but I'm all about expanding horizons. SO many books to read!

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