In which I talk about how Neil Gaiman owes me pancakes.

By Michael, Age 36

Neil Gaiman owes me pancakes. He doesn’t know it, of course, but he does.

So as I have mentioned, I have really bizarre dreams. Often they are horrifying and violent, and are the stuff of nightmares. That kind of thing. Whatever. Occasionally, however, I dream about writing – as in, the art thereof. Usually these are postcards from my brain, motivating me to write something when I haven’t. But when I was working on my first novel, I had a couple of dreams in which a very famous writer appeared to chastise me, and that writer is Neil Gaiman.

Neil Gaiman owes me pancakes.

In my first dream involving him, he flew in through an open window in the form of a raven, transforming into his rumpled self, and said, ‘You really need to just write the book, you know.’

‘Yes, Neil,’ I said, ‘But I’m having a lot of problems with motivation.’

‘If you write this book,’ he said, ‘You’ll start a career. If you start a career, you will eventually become popular enough to feature at conventions. And you will meet me. We will have breakfast together. You’d like to have pancakes with Amanda and myself, wouldn’t you?’

At the time, it did. So of course I said ‘Fine, fine’ and he nodded, turned back into a raven and flew out into the summer night.

The SECOND time, I woke up one morning after a particularly long stretch of being completely nonproductive, only to see that in the corner of my bedroom was a small wrought iron table, on which a large stack of pancakes was set up with some lovely country crockery, and there was Neil, munching away and shaking his head at me. He looked very displeased.

So that’s my story about Neil Gaiman, dreams, and how he owes me pancakes. I doubt I’ll ever collect, but it makes for a funny story to tell people.

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Things I Have Survived Since 1978:

  • Nearly dying in the hospital as a child
  • Two attempted murders
  • Three violent assaults
  • Four muggings
  • The age of boy bands
  • Vanilla Ice
  • Writing four novels

And they haven’t gotten me yet. Goodbye, thirty-five. Bring on thirty-six. Violent resistance against terminal existence every day.

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Oh god all caps.

A REMINDER FOR READERS. I will be at the Baltimore Book Festival
this Saturday, selling books, signing books, being dumb. Not
necessarily in that order. You can find me at the Curiosity Quills
space in Mckeldin Square, all day, either at the booths (M14 + M15) or
wandering around being social. Come out and say hello!

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