Neil Gaiman: In Conversation with Claire Armitstead

Neil Gaiman 2

Before she begins Claire Armitstead receives rapturous applause from half the audience when she mentions that she is the Books Editor for “the opposition”, The Guardian. She then mentions that one of the stewards on the way asked the if they were here for the ‘Neil Gaiman’ event. Levelling and so very Hay Festival.

Gaiman talked about his personal and professional relationship with the late Terry Pratchett.  They collaborated when Neil was just 27. Gaiman’s first novel Good Omens was a collaborative effort with Pratchett and he described how they each wrote sections and shared them with each other over the phone.

He shares his favourite memory of Pratchett. “I was in a taxi on my way to a book signing and my phone rang.” Terry, suffering from Alzheimer’s, was writing an autobiography and he had a lapse of memory that he thought Neil might help with.  In the US in 1990 during the promotional tour for ‘Good Omens’ after a memorable and chaotic radio interview the two of them were signing a ‘They Might be Giants” song on the street.”Were we on 39th or 40th St?” said Terry.

“Terry was somebody who used anger..it was something that drove him” said Gaiman. People who say he was a sweet man had never met the real Terry Pratchett.

Gaiman also talks about his new book of short stories ‘Trigger Warning’ and reads from July. It is one of twelve stories in the collection entitled ‘A Calendar of Tales” created after Blackberry invited Gaiman to request ideas from fans via Twitter and then create stories around the replies.

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