Nanowrimo, Neil Gaiman and the Netherlands!

Travel, Writing


Like my little word play up there? Yeah, me too.

So you didn’t hear from me in November, I know. I was busy with the nose-to-the-grindstone thing, belting out a very (ugly) rough draft of a middle grade paranormal story. I did win Nano though, with 53k words! Go me! I’m very pleased with myself, as this is the first time I’ve actually won Nano. Most years I wasn’t even able to participate because I was working on my MA, but this year I was determined! And, you know, it’s really amazing the number of words I can write if I stop putzing around and actually put fingers to keyboard.


On Monday, 14 December, I had the privilege of seeing Neil Gaiman speak here in Decatur, GA. The Little Shop of Stories (a fantastic indy kids’ bookstore) won the Graveyard Book Halloween Party Contest, along with a store up in Winnipeg, Canada. So the prize was Neil coming to speak and sign. I arrived at about 5:15pm and Neil was going to begin speaking at 6. I wasn’t able to get a ticket for the main room where he actually was, so I was in the overflow room with a couple hundred other folks. When Neil began, he actually did a shout out to those of us in the overflow room, which was really wonderful! He paused and asked where the camera was (we were watched on closed circuit tv) and he waved to us and thanked us for coming. He also assured us that we would be real people soon. 😉

He read from Odd and the Frost Giant, then took some questions which had been submitted prior to the evening. One question dealt with Nanowrimo. It asked whether he thought it was a waste of time, or a good idea. And I really loved his answer. He said that he thought anything that moved an aspiring writing from the “aspiring” tag to the “writer” tag was a good thing. And he also said that for some people it was a good tool to discover that they shouldn’t be a writer. That cracked me up!

At any rate, he was a real trouper! I finally got to him with my two books at 12:30am. I got home at 1am and Neil tweeted that he was finished at 1:30am. Talk about an author dedicated to his fans! He said he signed for 1050 people! No wonder it took so long. This was my first time seeing Neil in person, though I’ve been a fan for a long time. He really did go above and beyond expectations. I have even more respect for him than I did before, if that’s possible!


And for the final “N”… I’m at the Atlanta Hartsfield Airport right now, waiting to get on a jet plane headed for Amsterdam, the Netherlands. (Granted, when I get a chance to post this, I’ll already be there because I’m not paying Hartsfield five bucks just to get on the internet for two hours.

Now I’m en route, up in the air some few thousand feet. I guess I’m about three and a half hours from arrival and can’t really sleep. These little seats are not particularly comfortable.

Anyway, the trip is a family thing and also a very, very, very late honeymoon. Like eight years late. But better late than never, right? We’re flying into Amsterdam, then driving with family down to the Italian Alps. A week there, then back to Amsterdam for another week. Then to London for another week, then home. I’ll post as often as I can, but I have no idea what my access will be. I’m hoping to get some revisions done since I won’t have the internet distracting me. Ha! 🙂

Good writing to all!

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