By Lauryn Angel
Neil Gaiman fans descended upon the Winspear Opera House on July 7, for the author’s sold-out performance. The atmosphere was charged with excitement, fueled by Gaiman’s comments about “an experiment” he might conduct with the audience.
Gaiman took to the stage with an armful of books, some “mysterious papers,” and a stack of index cards on which fans had written questions. He answered questions about his favorite Disney film (Fantasia) and about current projects, and in between rounds of questions, he read some of his stories, explaining the stories behind the stories. While the evening was light-hearted, for the most part, with readings of “October Tale” from A Calendar of Tales and “The Master Builder” from the recent Norse Mythology, Gaiman also read the unsettling “Click Clack, the Rattlebag,” from Trigger Warning. The highlight of the evening came when he turned to the aforementioned “mysterious pages;” the “experiment” Gaiman alluded to was revealed to be scenes Gaiman wrote for the upcoming BBC adaptation of Good Omens, the novel he co-authored with Terry Pratchett.
Gaiman answered questions on all sorts of subjects, from Doctor Who to the importance of libraries, and charmed the audience with anecdotes about his family, all with charm and a wicked sense of humor. And with an excellent sense of timing, Gaiman managed to give the audience all they could have hoped for, while leaving them with a sense that there was much more he could have talked about. But that’s for another time.