Wild Things: YA Grown-Up discussion

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Goodreads' Authors @ WT > A place to pre-post questions for Wild Man Neil

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message 1: by Karey (last edited Jun 15, 2009 11:59AM) (new)

Karey (kareyshane) | 77 comments To make it go well, how about if we list our questions here right now? That way he can choose which ones he wants to respond to when the time comes.

If he'd rather do the Q & A off the cuff, great. But at least he'll have choices about what works best. If you think that's a good idea, fire away! To keep it simple for Neil, remember that he will be reading these, so direct the questions directly to him right from the get go so he doesn't have to sift through all kinds of drib drab. :)


message 2: by Karey (last edited Jun 15, 2009 11:54AM) (new)

Karey (kareyshane) | 77 comments Hi Neil, What was the first lie you ever told? You know, stretching the story a bit due to a vivid imagination. Did you get in trouble?


message 3: by Jackie (last edited Jun 19, 2009 08:15AM) (new)

Jackie (thenightowl) Mine's a corny question but I want to know where do you get inspiration for your stories?


message 4: by Robin (new)

Robin (robinsullivan) | 1 comments This is not about GY but I'm dieing to know how he and Prachette colaborated on Good Omen's who did what? Were there any disagreements...how did they settle things?


message 5: by [deleted user] (last edited Jun 15, 2009 11:57AM) (new)

Great Question Robin. I was wondering the same thing.

Also, How did you and Prachette come up with the Characters?

What is your favorite story that you have written and why?

Who has been the most inspiration in your life and Why?


message 6: by Misty (new)

Misty | 1505 comments Coraline is the type of book I would have loved as a child, and my mom would have worried about my loving. I read it with my little sister (and am encouraging her to read The Graveyard Book), but I know my neighbor would never let her daughter read either book. I'm wondering if you often get negative reactions from parents due to the darker elements in your books?


message 7: by Kathy (last edited Jun 15, 2009 12:31PM) (new)

Kathy  (readr4ever) | 342 comments I have always had a fascination with graveyards/cemeteries and headstones therein. My question is do you have such a fascination and what is the most interesting epitaph on a headstone that you recall and/or experience in a graveyard?


message 8: by Allison (new)

Allison (inconceivably) What are you reading right now and how do you like it?



message 9: by Becky (new)

Becky (beckyofthe19and9) There seems to be a running theme with a lot of your books (or at least the ones I've read so far) with underworld and secret "other" places that are inaccessible to the uninitiated or oblivious, ie normal. If you had a chance to really live in (or maybe just visit) one of those places, which would you choose?


message 10: by Becky (new)

Becky (beckyofthe19and9) Who is your favorite author and which author most influenced your own work?


message 11: by Lisa (new)

Lisa | 13 comments What are your best and worst moments while writing? Do you see those repeated during the course of writing each novel? And, since we see so many magical moments in your writing, what magical moments do you experience in your life?


message 12: by Kathy (new)

Kathy  (readr4ever) | 342 comments What sorts of music do you enjoy and what artists do you listen to most? Do you listen to music while writing and if so, any particular favorites for that?


message 13: by Kathy (new)

Kathy  (readr4ever) | 342 comments Your opening line in The Graveyard Book is such a singularly great line, "There was a hand in the darkness, and it held a knife." Was this line something that you reworked some, paring it down to the essential, chilling bones, or did it just come to you in its glorious simplicity? Also, at what point did your deliciously wicked imagination create this line? Beginning of writing the story, end, a thought in the night?


message 14: by Luann (new)

Luann (azbookgal) | 274 comments Can you tell us about any upcoming projects you are working on? Many of my students LOVE Coraline and often ask for "another book just like it" when they finish. They would love to hear that you are working on something new for their age-range.


message 15: by Kathy (new)

Kathy  (readr4ever) | 342 comments Just a quick question relating to a blog entry you wrote on entitlement. Are you my bitch, Neil? (LOL, loved that line.)


message 16: by Kathy (new)

Kathy  (readr4ever) | 342 comments Sequel to The Graveyard Book? Yes or No? (Please, yes.)


message 17: by Mary (new)

Mary Z (mary_z) Your books can get so scary, and yet they're so real. Do you ever scare yourself? Is there anything you're really afraid of?


message 18: by Becky (new)

Becky (beckyofthe19and9) One of my favorite of your characters is the Marquis de Carabas from Neverwhere. I would love to learn more about him and his history. Is there any possibility of a de Carabas Neverwhere spin-off?

Which of your own characters is your favorite?


message 19: by Laura (new)

Laura (apenandzen) How hard is it to switch gears between writing for younger and older children, young adults and adult audiences? It seems to me that no matter what your audience, your books always hit the mark. How do you do it?


message 20: by Laura (last edited Jun 16, 2009 02:35PM) (new)

Laura (apenandzen) I personally find your work, as well as Diana Wynne Jones' novels, to inspire the writer lurking somewhere inside of me. Do you set out to inspire others with your writing?


message 21: by Renee (new)

Renee (elenarenee) | 82 comments I love all your books. I found American Gods and Anasasi boys to be some of my favorite reads of all time. Any plans for more in that series?


message 22: by Mockingbird (new)

Mockingbird | 2 comments Coraline was an especially powerful book for my husband. He's not one to cry much, but he cried many times as he read along.
Question: Have you heard of many adults responding that way to Coraline?


message 23: by Mockingbird (last edited Jun 17, 2009 05:22PM) (new)

Mockingbird | 2 comments We saw you on the Colbert Report. We liked your conversation w/ Colbert. Question: Many people come away from conversations wondering or wishing someting could have been slightly different. Is there anything more that you wish you could have said, or a question you wish he would have asked you on the show? If so, what?


message 24: by Kathy (new)

Kathy  (readr4ever) | 342 comments I love all the different and interesting names in The Graveyard Book, especially those for the dead and Nobody/Bod. Do you keep a list of names, rather like a pool of names, from which you draw from for your books and stories, or do you make them all up while in the process of creating the particular book? Or is it a combination of already thought up names and newly created?


message 25: by Kathy (new)

Kathy  (readr4ever) | 342 comments Do you keep a notebook in which you jot down interesting ideas or thoughts whenever or wherever they come to you?


message 26: by Kathy (new)

Kathy  (readr4ever) | 342 comments From what part/city/town in England did you emerge? Is it anywhere near Stoke Canon, which is near Exeter (my Boone ancestors took root there)? BTW, we are certainly glad you are in the states now.


message 27: by Laura (new)

Laura (apenandzen) Thank you immensely for joining us today, Neil. We're so excited to have you!


message 28: by Kathy (new)

Kathy  (readr4ever) | 342 comments Does the bullying at the school Bod attends have any personal experiences or observations behind it?


message 29: by Kathy (new)

Kathy  (readr4ever) | 342 comments Last chapter in The Graveyard Book--absolutely perfect! While it was a real tearjerker with Mistress Owens and the ending lullaby song, there was humor with Liza (one of my favorite characters), and hope with that great final line, "But between now and then, there was Life; and Bod walked into it with his eyes and his heart wide open." Question: how long did this last chapter take to write to achieve this state of perfection?


message 30: by Jackie (last edited Jun 19, 2009 08:34AM) (new)

Jackie (thenightowl) How does it feel to have your stories make it to the big screen? Do you have any creative control or say on what makes it in the movie or how things are changed? For example, there is a major difference in the ending of Stardust the movie and Stardust the book...did you approve of the ending? Was the ending your idea?


message 31: by Kathy (new)

Kathy  (readr4ever) | 342 comments OK, I loved the ghoul-gate and the adventure with the ghouls, but I'm curious how you decided on who the ghouls would be. Most curious about Harry Truman?


message 32: by Kathy (new)

Kathy  (readr4ever) | 342 comments The illustrations in The Graveyard Book, as well as in other favorites of mine, Coraline, The Day I Swapped My Dad for Two Goldfish, and The Wolves in the Walls all done by Dave McKean are fantastic. How closely do you collaborate with him on the illustrations?

I have a rare Neil Gaiman illustration from the National Book Festival in D.C. some years back. You drew a wolf head in the front of my copy of The Wolves in the Wall book--a treasured possession of mine. Thank you.


message 33: by Jackie (new)

Jackie (thenightowl) I've heard two of your audio books: Graveyard Book and Coraline. You have such a great reading voice. Does it take you long to record?


message 34: by Cindy (new)

Cindy (cmoreno) Hi Neil,

I have to honestly say that when I read The Graveyard Book I really was so worried about Bod as a baby and I think this has to do with the fact that I have a baby (Well he's a toddler now - going on fifteen months..) Anyway, I was worried for Bod and I really wanted to find out if he was going to be okay. But anyway, my question is, do you ever find that your writing changes like sometimes you write darker stories and other times they are not so dark due to the experiences you are dealing with at the time?

And another question, did you always write - even as a child? And if so, have you ever read your stories now as an adult and what did you think of these stories?


message 35: by Laura (new)

Laura (apenandzen) We're on page two in the other thread Neil - in case you've lost us. Page numbers are at the bottom of the screen.


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