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Neil Gaiman

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June 6, 2013 | By David L. Ulin, Los Angeles Times Book Critic
Neil Gaiman has a message for graduates: “Make Good Art.” That's the point of his stirring 2012 commencement address at Philadelphia's University of the Arts, widely disseminated across the Internet, which is like David Foster Wallace's “This is Water” for a different generation, a call for self-expression and the courage to invent your own life. These, of course, are classic tropes to share at a graduation; I think of the 2005 Stanford University commencement at which Steve Jobs warned , “Your time is limited, so don't waste it living someone else's life.” And yet, Gaiman's speech is inspiring not because it offers any cautions, but rather because it eschews the whole idea of caution, suggesting instead that it's in our best interest to break - or even better, to ignore - the rules.
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ENTERTAINMENT
February 3, 2014 | By Carolyn Kellogg
Now is the time to submit your ideas to the Twitter Fiction Festival. The call for entries closes at the end of Feb. 4. The festival itself will take place March 12-16. The Twitter Fiction Festival is new -- so new that it's happened only once before. That first time out, it was planned but slightly chaotic, wide open to any kind of fiction-focused use of Twitter that writers might invent. In 2014, there are two official organizers, the Assn. of American Publishers and Penguin Random House.
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ENTERTAINMENT
February 4, 2010
You were probably more frightened by Neil Gaiman's "Coraline" than your kids were. But the beloved British goth-noir author has penned some of the most beloved countercultural tomes of adolescence, including the DC Comics "Sandman" series and "The Graveyard Book." He'll discuss his work here, and though black attire isn't required, it's advised. Royce Hall, UCLA. 8 p.m. Thursday. $24-$48. www.uclalive.org.
ENTERTAINMENT
February 3, 2014 | By Carolyn Kellogg
The things people do for charity. Bestselling author Neil Gaiman promised he would read "Green Eggs and Ham" by Dr. Seuss if the fundraising campaign for Worldbuilders reached $500,000. With about five days left to go, it did. Calling the book "rather wonderful," a slightly rumpled Gaiman read the children's book classic. As he explains on his blog, Gaiman is "very beardy, because I am not going out in public, and am just writing. " Founded by author Patrick Rothfuss, Worldbuilders holds a different fundraiser each year for Heifer International.
ENTERTAINMENT
February 3, 2014 | By Carolyn Kellogg
The things people do for charity. Bestselling author Neil Gaiman promised he would read "Green Eggs and Ham" by Dr. Seuss if the fundraising campaign for Worldbuilders reached $500,000. With about five days left to go, it did. Calling the book "rather wonderful," a slightly rumpled Gaiman read the children's book classic. As he explains on his blog, Gaiman is "very beardy, because I am not going out in public, and am just writing. " Founded by author Patrick Rothfuss, Worldbuilders holds a different fundraiser each year for Heifer International.
ENTERTAINMENT
July 1, 2013 | By Alexander Nazaryan
Neil Gaiman is busy. Having just published his first novel for adults in years, “Ocean at the End of the Lane,” the fantasy master is returning to the “Sandman” series on which his reputation at least partly rests, Vertigo, an imprint of DC Entertainment, announced Monday morning. “The Sandman: Overture #1,” to be written by Gaiman and illustrated by J.H. Williams III, will be released on Oct. 30. According to a press release from Vertigo - which published the original “Sandman” series - “Overture” will “reveal a previously untold story in 'The Sandman' mythos.” "This is the one story that we never got to tell.
ENTERTAINMENT
October 14, 2013 | By Emily Keeler
A mother in Alamogordo, N.M., happened to flip through her kid's homework and was distraught by what she found. Nancy Wilmott's teenage daughter had been assigned to read the British writer Neil Gaiman's “Neverwhere,” which happens to have one extramarital sex scene between two adults, and has been on the Alamogordo High School 10th grade curriculum since 2004. Wilmott lodged a complaint with the school, which has suspended the use of the book in its course materials and taken it off the library shelves.
ENTERTAINMENT
December 19, 2012 | By Carolyn Kellogg
Neil Gaiman has announced that his next book-signing tour will be his last. He'll be heading out in 2013 to sign copies of "The Ocean at the End of the Lane," which hits shelves June 18, traveling around the U.S., the U.K., and then going farther afield. Then: No more. This will be his final book-signing tour because, for Gaiman, recent book-signings have turned into overly long affairs. In 2009, a reading and book-signing he did in Georgia had some fans waiting almost seven hours.
ENTERTAINMENT
April 3, 2013 | By Carolyn Kellogg
The literary event series Live Talks Los Angles announced its spring 2013 series Wednesday. The series, founded in 2010, takes place at a number of venues around the city. Speakers this spring include Neil Gaiman, who comes to L.A. -- well, technically, Glendale, at the Alex Theater -- in June to talk about his forthcoming novel "The Ocean at the End of the Lane. " Gaiman can write just about anything, and write it well -- comic books (Sandman), award-winning children's novels ("The Graveyard Book")
ENTERTAINMENT
June 4, 2010 | By Nick Owchar, Los Angeles Times
Let's face it: If Homer or Virgil were writing today, their work would probably get shelved in the fantasy section of the bookstore rather than in "Classics of Western Literature. " "Oh, c'mon," I imagine some bookseller saying, "the publisher says this 'Iliad' thing is a serious work about gods and war. Really? Been there already!" Whenever a sorcerer enters the scene, or a demon flits across the page, some kind of literary depreciation effect still sets in (though the tide is changing)
ENTERTAINMENT
January 28, 2014 | By Carolyn Kellogg
Humble Bundle is one of those websites trying to make optimal use of our digital world. It combines downloads with a pay-what-you-like system that funnels money to charity. And for the first time, it's trying its hand at audiobooks. This is how it works. Every week or two, Humble Bundle makes a set -- bundle -- of digital downloads freely available. Downloaders are asked to pay what they like: what they think the downloads are worth, what they can afford, an amount that represents their appreciation of the creator.
ENTERTAINMENT
October 14, 2013 | By Emily Keeler
A mother in Alamogordo, N.M., happened to flip through her kid's homework and was distraught by what she found. Nancy Wilmott's teenage daughter had been assigned to read the British writer Neil Gaiman's “Neverwhere,” which happens to have one extramarital sex scene between two adults, and has been on the Alamogordo High School 10th grade curriculum since 2004. Wilmott lodged a complaint with the school, which has suspended the use of the book in its course materials and taken it off the library shelves.
ENTERTAINMENT
August 29, 2013 | By Carolyn Kellogg
Harlan Ellison is not the kind of person who cares if Neil Gaiman retweets Margaret Atwood. "I'm a happily 20th century guy," he says by phone -- land line -- from his home. He has never tweeted, doesn't engage on Facebook and writes on a typewriter -- manual, not electric. So why did he launch a YouTube channel last week? His friends. "They -- the nudge squad -- dragged me literally screaming and kicking like a witch to Cotton Mather's gibbet," he says. Those friends include screenwriter Josh Olson ("A History of Violence")
ENTERTAINMENT
July 29, 2013 | By Hector Tobar
Near the end of Reza Aslan's strange, 10-minute television exchange with Fox News, the author of "Zealot: The Life and Times of Jesus of Nazareth," gives voice to a thought that's entered the mind of many an author while being interviewed: “I'm afraid it seems like you haven't read my book.” The interview, now circulating widely on social media sites, has helped propel the book to No. 1 on the Amazon bestseller list Monday. Aslan is a Muslim scholar of religion and a one-time Christian convert who's just published a popular book about the life of Jesus.
ENTERTAINMENT
July 3, 2013 | By Alexander Nazaryan
If Wednesday's Google Doodle looks a little buggy, if you will, that's because it's meant to celebrate Franz Kafka, the “Metamorphosis” author who would have turned 130 today. Born on July 3, 1883, in Prague, Kafka spent much of his life as a law clerk in that city. He died in 1924 a virtual unknown -- he even told his friend Max Brod to destroy his unpublished novels, which included “The Trial” and “The Castle.” Luckily, Brod failed to comply with his requests. The Google Doodle alludes to the famous opening of “ The Metamorphosis ,” which reads: “One morning, when Gregor Samsa woke from troubled dreams, he found himself transformed in his bed into a horrible vermin.” With his ineffable sense of the tragic and absurd, Kafka would have likely been skeptical of the Internet, a tool meant to foster human proximity that has most of us spending days in front of a screen.
ENTERTAINMENT
July 2, 2013 | By Carolyn Kellogg
How many hours a week do you read? If it's 10 hours or more, you might try moving to India -- you'll be among your people. According to this infographic, Indians spend more time reading books than the residents of any other nation. Each week, the average Indian reads for 10 hours, 42 minutes. Americans read books only about half that amount: 5 hours and 42 minutes. Interestingly, Americans and Germans spend exactly the same amount of time reading. The big reading nations, after India, are Thailand (9 hours, 24 minutes)
ENTERTAINMENT
December 29, 2008 | Geoff Boucher
Even in casual conversation, British author Neil Gaiman sometimes sounds as if he's narrating some dark fairy tale -- his sentences slither across old stone floors or flit on gossamer wings. He also happens to live in a rambling Minnesota manse that looks, Gaiman says, as if it were "drawn by Charles Addams on a day he was feeling particularly morbid." So it's no surprise that fans of the fantasy novelist have whispered for years that Gaiman bears more than a passing resemblance to his signature creation, the Sandman, the spooky comic-book character that debuted 20 years ago and brought a new literary ambition to the pop medium.
ENTERTAINMENT
August 5, 2007 | Sam Adams, Special to The Times
In the world of Neil Gaiman's Sandman, the storied comic-book series he wrote from 1988 to 1996, there lies a library filled with books their authors only dreamed of writing. If Gaiman were crafting the dream king's domain today, he might well add a multiplex to show all the movies he's never made. In the last 16 years, Gaiman has watched more than a dozen of his comics, stories and novels languish in Hollywood's often dark maze of development without a single one making its way to the screen.
ENTERTAINMENT
July 1, 2013 | By Alexander Nazaryan
Neil Gaiman is busy. Having just published his first novel for adults in years, “Ocean at the End of the Lane,” the fantasy master is returning to the “Sandman” series on which his reputation at least partly rests, Vertigo, an imprint of DC Entertainment, announced Monday morning. “The Sandman: Overture #1,” to be written by Gaiman and illustrated by J.H. Williams III, will be released on Oct. 30. According to a press release from Vertigo - which published the original “Sandman” series - “Overture” will “reveal a previously untold story in 'The Sandman' mythos.” "This is the one story that we never got to tell.
ENTERTAINMENT
June 13, 2013 | By Rebecca Keegan, Los Angeles Times
AUSTIN, Texas - In Neil Gaiman's passport case, on a scrap of paper beside his green card, are two verses of an unfinished work called "Pirate Stew. " "I assume it's for kids," Gaiman said. "But it's only two verses... and it just sits there, and every time I pull out my passport, I feel guilty that I haven't done anything. One day, I will pull out my passport, get on a plane and go, 'Ya know, I don't have anything to do now for the next seven hours. I'll write 'Pirate Stew.'" It's hard to imagine the British-born Gaiman with time to kill - as a writer, he's almost absurdly prolific.
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