If nobody minds, I may try and gather up all the asks and answers about writing so far and put them up in a big blog post - or several big blog posts — over at Neilgaiman.com. Mostly because I’m now seeing a lot of heartfelt questions coming in that I’ve already answered here on Tumblr.
hatorbu-deactivated20130316 asked: I was wondering... do you have any picture with Robert Smith and Tim Burton? You all are "hair-mates" :D
shewasabadgirl asked: I found out yesterday that the Chinese version of Coraline is literally translated as The Ghost Mother, which I feel rather misleading. I wonder if you had any say in that?
pugsandrecreation asked: Neil, I'm sorry for asking this once before, but your pashmob for Amanda was just about the most romantic thing I’ve seen in my life and I’m wondering if you’d help me do something similarly lovely for my girlfriend. She will turn 20 on May 13th and nothing would make her happier than getting to hang out with a few pugs that afternoon. Will you post this in the hopes that...
odamae asked: I had an argument with a friend of mine about a topic concern comics and I thinked, "well, why not ask Neil about it? Sometimes he answer!" So, here's the question: I believe you should have answered this before, but, in your vision, comics are an Art, like the "9th Art" and stuff? If yes/no, why?
repeatedaddiction asked: How do you feel about killing beloved characters in stories? Philosophically, I suppose. Does it cheaply play off of emotions, or do you find it good to keep your readers on their toes?
goldenreel asked: Do you have specific music you listen to while writing? Or do you prefer to write in silence? (PS- did I see you at Fuji Ya Sushi in St. Paul a few weeks ago? If not, there is a man in the Twin Cities who is your perfect doppelganger.)
2getherweread asked: I have been working on a fictional story, it is great. (I feel that it is) You are my favorite author. I hope that you can tell me what is the best way to get published. I am extremely passionate about becoming an author like yourself. Wish to live up to your hype. Please help?
iwantlovely asked: Hello--would you rather we call you Neil, or Mr. Gaiman? Or something else entirely. I always find that when I become familiar with artists' work I start to call them by their first names, but then there is this constant awkwardness in my brain over whether or not the artist would be okay with that. Thank you!
measuringcupsinthena asked: Neil, how do you keep yourself from becoming insane? From locking yourself up in an enclosed space for days, not eating, not drinking, not bathing, and just writing?
arcane-laser-hens asked: I really enjoy your work, although I have only read and seen a small selection so far. The first book of yours I read was The Graveyard Book for a Children's Literature course. It was my favorite book from that whole class. I have one question that we couldn't quite decide on during our class discussion, we were of a split opinion: did you base it on The Jungle Book? It seemed so to me,...
hokusho asked: Mr. Gaiman, I'll be short and straight to the point: Are you done with the comic book industry? Not that I'm complaining about your books because I'm a big fan.
digitalhearts asked: Hi, Neil. I am currently in the middle of studying The Watchmen in my modern literature class (which is by far one of my favorite novels), and my teacher is basically implying that because it is a "graphic novel/comic book" it should not be considered "real literature". Any suggestions or points you have on trying to convince my overly pretentious teacher otherwise?
stevenlochran asked: Hi Neil. I'm getting married in December and my fiance and I are having trouble selecting a reading for the ceremony (we need at least two). Do you have anything you'd recommend, either written by you or someone else?
teazzle asked: I was wondering how many people on the planet know who the Forgotten God is. I don`t want to know who it is, but what I really just want to know is the amount of people who actually know the real answer. (I am lying, of course I want to know who it is. Every soul who has read American Gods is curious.)
There are about 5,300 ASK messages right now sitting in the queue. Which is why yours hasn’t been answered, I expect. One question I keep seeing over and again, even more than “What MFA program should I do?” (I do not answer this, because my answer would probably be: “I have no idea. I never did an MFA program. I just wrote stuff.”) is, over and over, a variant on...
undisclosedanswers-deactivated2 asked: Do you write differently for each audience? Do you make a conscious effort to change syntax, word usage, and such?
asksamtheman asked: How are you and Amanda doing?
bassoonerthebetter asked: Neil, I have found that when one is in possession of a good book that happens to have some steamy bits in it (such as American Gods), and is in the company of parents/small children, and said parents/small children come across the book and open it at random, they will almost always land directly on the page with the steamy bits. This occurrence is invariably awkward for all involved parties, and...
astringofmadhousefloozies asked: Mr. Gaiman, can you clear something up for me? How do you pronounce Aziraphale? I've been saying it as "ah-ZEE-ra-fell", but I've starting to think that might not be right.
stopthinkfeel asked: How do you get over the fear of failing? I've always wanted to be a writer, but I have never really started anything with substance because I'm afraid of writing something that won't work or that I'll look back on with shame because it didn't amount to everything I always hoped my work would be. I know that this will probably evoke the, "just write" respose, but...
Happy World Poetry Day
Here’s my favourite poem about Premature Ejaculation and lust and self-hatred. It’s called The Imperfect Enjoyment, and is by John Wilmot, Earl of Rochester (1 April 1647 – 26 July 1680). I put a link up to it rather than post the text here, because it’s definitely a Not Safe For Work poem. The language was rude then and remains rude now. And as for the rant at his penis for...
The Difference Between Private and Public Morality
robertreich: Republicans have morality upside down. Santorum, Gingrich, and even Romney are barnstorming across the land condemning gay marriage, abortion, out-of-wedlock births, access to contraception, and the wall separating church and state. But America’s problem isn’t a breakdown in private morality. It’s a breakdown in public morality. What Americans do in their bedrooms is their own...
Send Team USA to the White House →
My assistant, Fabulous Lorraine, who bouts under the derby name of Quiche MeDeadly, wants me to spread the word around on this. And when a derby girl wants the word spread around, what you do is, you spread the word around. Trust me on this. We wanted to share this with you, and ask that you share it with everyone you know who loves roller derby and wants to see it gain the legitimacy it...
Small poem footnote
Er… getting some extreme and in some cases kind of unpleasant messages in on the Ask line about the Nudity poem, telling me I hate women, hate women’s bodies etc. That poem was written, along with the poem “The Day The Saucers Came”, in 2006 for Spiderwords, a SF/Fantasy/Horror poetry website. (Oddly enough, when they went up on line, “The Day The Saucers...
metatrons-deactivated20121021 asked: Any suggestions on getting through writing "awkward" (to yourself) scenes in a story? Like if a major plot point can only be revealed/explained/expressed through a more romanticized situation, and for whatever reason that makes you uncomfortable to write?
Best Headline EVER
girlscoutofthedevil asked: A few points in regards to your love of swearing: 1) Your books did a lot to supplement my vocabulary of foul language. 2) This didn't go over well with my elders, considering I was about 12 at the time when I was putting this knowledge to use. I think they resent you. 3) Did you marry Amanda Palmer just because her name has the word "fucking" in it? Don't lie.
surprisinglypoetic asked: Did you cut your hair after an epic showdown between you and Benedict Cumberbatch, where only the victor could be the BBC's dark, curly, moppy representative.