Okay, so it’s no secret to anyone that I love Neil Gaiman and have loved this man for like ever! And I mean love as in love him as a person (I know he’s married and congratulations Amanda Palmer on scoring a wonderful husband! =o). Neil has some of the best lines from anyone that I’ve ever known. But … before I talk about his recent commencement speech, I want to update everyone on progress for book three, The Return.
Okay, I was going to write up a cool blog post on the Superstars Writing Seminar that I attended in Vegas but unfortunately I can’t because I had to leave Vegas early. =o( Why? For an interview. I’ve been job hunting and interviewing for a while now since my last project with the Utah Data Center ended in April. It was a project on which I worked and ended when the work ended, so, *sigh* now I am on the road to finding a new project. So, it’s been quite a road and I think I may be being too pickly in choosing a new project but then again, I want it to be something I love. I’ve had people contacting me almost everyday and I’ve been so busy responding and interviewing that I haven’t had much time to write. But as soon as it’s over, I’m going to get back on my writing schedule and finish this thing! Because I want it to be done as much as my readers do! =o)
Anyway, so, what did Neil have to say? He gave a commencement speech for the University of the Arts in Philadelphia and made some points that I found very interesting. One that stood out in my mind was that he said whenever he wrote “just for the money,” his projects always ended in bitter disappointment. He said to write for the love of writing and let it take you to places you’ve never been. Whenever it starts to feel like work, stop and write something else that doesn’t.
He also said that when you get to the point where you feel like you are walking naked down the street and revealing a bit too much of yourself, then you have gotten to the point where you are doing it right. This is when you have found your true voice. Relish it. And, the advice he got from Stephen King that he didn’t listen to: “All this success you have is really great! Enjoy it!” Neil said that he didn’t enjoy it as much as he should have because he was always so worried about what was next – the next publishing deal, the next book signing, the next story to write. He said he wished he had enjoyed it more.
Another pearl he had was that you want to make mistakes because you learn from them but always be yourself. During the down times, because there will be down times, take advantage and make good art. Always make good art and don’t pay attention to the rules. Especially don’t pay attention to the rules now because in this new world of art, old barriers are breaking down and a new order is being established. So try things that no one else has tried and do what you want, because now, artists have options they’ve never had before!
And have fun!
Luv you Neil! Keep up the good work!