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Neil Gaiman: Leaving a trail of Internet destruction

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In addition to writing novels, comic books, kids’ fiction, TV scripts, film scripts, and most recently, editing a Year’s Best comic anthology, Neil Gaiman is perhaps one of the most technologically with-it authors today. While many old-school creative types admit a certain reluctance to embrace all things gadget-like, Gaiman has thrown himself into the brave new e-world with a certain reckless abandon – a characteristic that’s served him well in his immensely popular body of work.

Perhaps best known for The Sandman comic and Coraline, the book and film, Gaiman has worked successfully in just about everything, including collaborative fiction with another fantasy powerhouse, Terry Pratchett. Recently, New York Magazine’s culture blog,The Vulture coaxed a few more than 140 characters (the limit for Twitter comments, which Gaiman puts out voraciously for nearly 1.5 million followers) from the fantastic fantasist.

Here are some highlights from that interview. You can read all about it here.

On e-readers:

“When I was handed my first iPad, the friend who showed it to me said, “Look at this,” and promptly showed me my Eternals story for Marvel on the iPad. I loved, was shocked, delighted, and amazed by the fact that the first best seller that DC comics had on the iPad was Sandman No. 1. Just sort of going, this is a comic I wrote 23 years ago, and you’ve got this new technology, and it’s here right now. I think they’re brilliant. I really do.”

On nostalgia for movies:

Interviewer: There’s some retro-nostalgia love out there for Howard the Duck.
Gaiman: No, there isn’t. I do not believe that. It’s there and it goes away the moment you watch it. You can feel it in your heart and then you see that dwarf in the duck suit clomping around and you go, “Aaaaaaaaaah … ”

On comics:

“So yes, I did: I killed Batman. It was fun. I’m sorry.”

On social media:

“Oh, tweeting prolifically is the most easy thing in the world. Tweeting prolifically is like somebody saying, “Boy, you’re a really good walker around,” you know. It’s not really hard.”

On parenting and the Internet:

“Sitting there with my son who was 14 or 15, having spotted an inappropriate Google search from him. Probably back in the days almost before Google, where he now works. “Hi, Mike!” And sort of saying to him, “You know, the truth is if you head over into the basement, there are boxes and boxes over in that corner of soft-core men’s magazines that I used to have film reviews and things in the eighties which you are welcome to go and peruse at your leisure.” … My attitude on it was you are not going to find any images in there that you will wish you had never seen. If you go looking on the web, you may well find yourself with things that you really wish were not in your head. And things that have been seen can never be unseen, or not entirely.”

(image via Kyle Cassidy, Multi-license with GFDL and Creative Commons CC-BY 3.0)

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