Neil Gaiman Appreciation Post

After sending a couple asks on Tumblr, I realized that Neil Gaiman is probably a very busy author person, so I decided to make a post about it so that more people could see my adoration for this author and just how obnoxiously long I can make my sentences.

I was introduced to Neil Gaiman by way of the Sandman comics. I absolutely loved them, but didn’t get a chance to read them often because Barnes N’ Noble is far away and gas money is, well, money. But I loved them. So when my brother told me that he had written word novels as well as graphic novels, I just about pissed myself with excitement.

So, after that, I got started on The Graveyard Book. I fell in love again. He was the first author I had read a book by that actually wrote like someone would speak. I thought that was very comforting, and that the plot was just brilliant.

So I began recommending the Graveyard Book to anyone who would listen. And then since I liked that one, my brother gave me more.

He gave me American Gods. I liked this one too, but not as much as The Graveyard Book. 

He gave me Ocean at the End of the Lane. I continue to rave about this one whenever someone needs a new book to read.

He gave me Good Omens, which I am still reading and may love the concept unto death, after which point I will love it all the more.

I would later learn that both Coraline and Stardust are his. I am not at all surprised by this currently. I wasn’t then either, but the point is that I’m still not surprised.

I’m terrible at conclusions, but the point is this – Neil Gaiman is pretty cool, and you should all read his books. He’s one of the most down-to-earth writers that I know. My favorite example of this is the raven scene inAmerican Gods that made the entire book that much better.


The bird turned, head tipped, suspiciously, on one side, and it stared at him with bright eyes.

“Say ‘Nevermore,’” said Shadow.

“F— you,” said the raven. [dashes added by me]


I like this one because a) it’s brilliant and unexpected and b) it’s exactly how I would respond if I were a raven… without the dashes, that is. It just takes too long to say “Eff dash dash dash you”.

Also, he’s a dark writer, but not utterly hopeless. Hopelessness is boring and well, hopeless. I like hope. I think perhaps the best term is not “dark” or even “bleak”, but “realistic”. He is very realistic.

Still, he makes the reader think. Simple, mindless gory plots are for boring people. (Well, maybe not boring, but they’re for people I don’t wouldn’t normally hang out with.) Ocean at the End of Lane is the best example. It is confusing, and I like it that way. Sandman is a bit similar to that, I guess.

Anyone who makes a reader both immersed and confused by the plot at the same time is a good writer in my mind. And he inspired my writing to be better than it ever could be before.

(I think that is how I will end this giant piece, mainly because it is midnight as I write this and I have finals to study for.)

Gabriel Penn, out.

Don’t Be Anyone But Yourself.

Perhaps as someone who hasn’t published much except a few things online, I don’t have much of a say in this. However, it seems to me that the writers who excelled are the ones who didn’t try to be anyone but themselves. They may have been inspired by other authors, even borrowing some things from their style. In the end, their stories were still their own.

I tried so long to be like J.R.R. Tolkien and Charles Dickens and C.S. Lewis. It was all a failure, really, because I wasn’t reaching my true potential. My potential is not reached in trying to be someone else. I am not someone else. I am me. I write very distinctly and definitely with intensive detail. While I may be inspired by other authors, I cannot allow their styles to overshadow my own.

Maybe I’m going too far with this, but I don’t think I could be more insulted than being told I am the next version of an old author. I do not want to be the next C.S. Lewis, although I love C.S. Lewis. I don’t mind it being said that I write like a certain person. I have someone who I write somewhat like. I am fully aware that we have similar styles, and we’re actually good friends.

(This would be the fantastic Caitlin E. Jones that I am referring to, by the way. She is currently writing Chimehour, an excellent Gaslamp Fantasy.)

Still, our stories and content are very different, and I think both would be happy to say that we’re different.

Don’t try to be the next J.R.R. Tolkien or Emily Dickenson or Ernest Hemingway or Robert Frost. They’re all dead. Just try to be you, and you’re already on your way to greatness.

They’re all dead. Just try to be you, and you’re already on your way to greatness.

Just try to be you, and you’re already on your way to greatness.

Thoughts for Today

Write the book you want to read.

If there’s something you don’t like in books, make a point not to put it in yours.

If there’s something you think modern books need more, put more of it in yours.

It doesn’t matter if it doesn’t fit a specific genre completely. It doesn’t matter if absolutely nobody else likes it. Just write the thing. Write it for you, because you’ll regret it forever if you don’t.

Write what you want to write and screw what anyone else says.

Why I Haven’t Been As Active

Why I Haven’t Been As Active

You’ve probably opened wondering why I haven’t been as active on WordPress. There’s a reason for that. And this may shock you all. I’ve actually been hiding out on Tumblr. It’s true. It’s not that I don’t like WordPress. I love WordPress! I typically have to write something a lot longer for WordPress than I do for Tumblr. My natural style is getting short snippets to put out, and coming up with…

View On WordPress

Why I Haven’t Been As Active

You’ve probably opened wondering why I haven’t been as active on WordPress. There’s a reason for that. And this may shock you all.

I’ve actually been hiding out on Tumblr.

It’s true. It’s not that I don’t like WordPress. I love WordPress! I typically have to write something a lot longer for WordPress than I do for Tumblr. My natural style is getting short snippets to put out, and coming up with some longer posts for WordPress takes a long time.

I hate having to say “oh I’m back” and then not coming back. So I think I found a solution to make you guys happy and my Tumblr followers happy. As it turns out, there’s a way to put your tumbler post onto WordPress.

So it’s probably not going to be as often still. I’m probably not going to be doing the daily thing. But when I do a slightly longer post, you’re going to be seeing it here on WordPress. And I planned to do a lot more of those recently.

So that’s what’s going on. Hope to see a lot more of you guys pretty soon, And thanks for being very patient.

JKR wants us to believe Snape is one of the bravest men Harry ever knew. Which is why I take her opinions on Draco with a huge grain of salt, tbh. She doesn’t understand how what she writes comes across to readers, and she’s really dismissive of fan opinions in that regard.

hermionelf:

okay but like i don’t remember exactly where it is but there was a scene in one of the last two books where it even said that harry pitied malfoy. that all he even felt for him by that point was pity. so the main protagonist can feel bad for this guy but we can’t?? i mean the hero is the person you want us to be like, right jkr? u sayin we should be completely hard-hearted to this poor boy when ur own golden child isn’t? and i mean look at this scene in dh:

gingerbregulus:

this is really true like jkr is amazing at worldbuilding but i’m not really sure if she gets that when you describe a man as “greasy” “hook-nosed” “yellow toothed” “sallow” and a PLETHORA of other really just horrible things, a lot of ur readers (who are CHILDREN) are probably not going to like that character?? at all? the twist with snape at the end was interesting and enlightening and really great because we see that this character who harry always viewed as evil was actually okay and he did the right thing for the wrong reasons and sure, whatever. that’s fine and i get it. authorial intent and all that.

but to then go on to just completely dismiss draco malfoy – a character who is canonically written as morally grey – eleven and going off to school and looking for a friend, thirteen and a bully, fifteen and prejudiced, seventeen and scared, and alone, and lost, and crying to a ghost in the girl’s bathroom – that’s what i take issue with. draco is constantly evolving as a character, yet jk rowling continues to demean his fans. she believes that anyone who likes draco must just be a teenage girl with a bad boy fetish, some pathetic child with posters of tom felton hanging up in her room, because why else would anyone like this character? 

LIKE, SHE’S LITERALLY THE ONE WHO WROTE HIM. LIKE. HOW THE HELL DO U WRITE THIS:

“I mean he’s sensitive, people bully him too,
and he feels lonely and hasn’t got anybody to talk to, and he’s not
afraid to show his feelings and cry!”

AND THIS:

“No one can help me,” said Malfoy. His whole body was shaking.
“I can’t do it… . I can’t… . It won’t work … and unless I do
it soon … he says he’ll kill me… .”

And Harry realized, with a shock so huge it seemed to root him
to the spot, that Malfoy was crying — actually crying — tears
streaming down his pale face
into the grimy basin. Malfoy gasped
and gulped and then, with a great shudder, looked up into the
cracked mirror and saw Harry staring at him over his shoulder. 

ESPECIALLY HERE: 

“I haven’t got any options!” said Malfoy, and he was suddenly
white as Dumbledore
. “I’ve got to do it! He’ll kill me! He’ll kill my
whole family!”

AND HERE:

“Now, Draco, quickly!” said the brutal-faced man angrily.
But Malfoy’s hand was shaking so badly that he could barely
aim.

and then be mad when people sympathize with him? it’s so ridiculous to me, it’s actually laughable, i don’t understand how an author can write a sympathetic character and then just 

image

????????????????????????

Draco, give Rowle another taste of our displeasure… do it, or feel my wrath yourself!

A log fell into the fire: flames reared, their light darting across a terrified, pointed white face –

Malfoy’s gaunt, petrified face seemed branded on the inside of [Harry’s] eyes. Harry felt sickened by what he had seen, by the use to which Draco was now being put by Voldemort.

i mean this kid, this teenage boy was forced to TORTURE people for voldemort. which even oblivious, biased harry clearly saw the horror of. draco had to do this on threat of his and his family’s death. do you know how traumatizing that must have been?? THIS KID WENT THROUGH SO MUCH. HE WAS USED AS AN INSTRUMENT OF PAIN FOR A TYRANT. HE WAS FORCED AGAINST HIS WILL TO DO THINGS THAT HE CANONICALLY REALIZED WERE WRONG BY NOW. IT WAS NOT HIS FAULT. WE CAN DAMN LOVE HIM IF WE WANT @JKR GOD KNOWS HE NEEDS IT