What is JacketFlap

  • JacketFlap connects you to the work of more than 200,000 authors, illustrators, publishers and other creators of books for Children and Young Adults. The site is updated daily with information about every book, author, illustrator, and publisher in the children's / young adult book industry. Members include published authors and illustrators, librarians, agents, editors, publicists, booksellers, publishers and fans.
    Join now (it's free).

Sort Blog Posts

Sort Posts by:

  • in
    from   

Suggest a Blog

Enter a Blog's Feed URL below and click Submit:

Most Commented Posts

In the past 7 days

Recent Posts

(tagged with 'neil gaiman')

Recent Comments

JacketFlap Sponsors

Spread the word about books.
Put this Widget on your blog!
  • Powered by JacketFlap.com

Are you a book Publisher?
Learn about Widgets now!

Advertise on JacketFlap

MyJacketFlap Blogs

  • Login or Register for free to create your own customized page of blog posts from your favorite blogs. You can also add blogs by clicking the "Add to MyJacketFlap" links next to the blog name in each post.

Blog Posts by Date

Click days in this calendar to see posts by day or month
new posts in all blogs
Viewing: Blog Posts Tagged with: neil gaiman, Most Recent at Top [Help]
Results 1 - 25 of 252
1. Neil Gaiman Does Jabberwocky


0 Comments on Neil Gaiman Does Jabberwocky as of 12/14/2014 6:10:00 AM
Add a Comment
2. Reviews: A Murder of Cartoonists

While we were enjoying Comic Arts Brooklyn this year, my partner Marguerite Van Cook and I took a break from the excitement of promoting our new Fantagraphics Book The Late Child and Other Animals to go across the street to a little coffee bar and have a snack. The young counterperson noted the influx of odd personages hauling portfolios and piles of comics and asked, “is that a convention?”
I replied, “Well, a convention is more like one of those huge things with wrestlers, porn stars and superhero comics, all mixed together with a lot of cosplayers. This is more of a gathering of especially individualistic birds in the alt/lit comics scene. I guess you could call it a ‘murder’ of cartoonists.”
She laughed and asked about the origin of that phrase, which usually describes a flock of crows. But not to further elaborate that conversation, what follows is a review sampling of comics, many of them with poetical aspects, that I got at CAB and other recent releases. Note that I don’t actually try to kill my subjects, but rather to remark on their positive aspects, wherever possible.

____________________________________________________________

Jungle Book by Harvey Kurtzman (Kitchen Sink/Dark Horse, $24.99)

Kurtzman 1000x863  Reviews: A Murder of Cartoonists

A rare solo effort by the auteuristic creator of E.C.’s two excellent war comics titles Two-Fisted Tales and Frontline Combat, working in the satiric mode he initiated for Mad. Now, I do very much like Kurtzman’s solo work; see Fantagraphics’ recent collection of most of his solo E.C. stories, Corpse on the Imjin (which also contains a smattering of his odd, briefer collaborations, like those with Alex Toth and Joe Kubert). His own drawings have a powerful thrust and direct emotionality that can be lost or greatly altered when filtered through the sensibilities of the artists charged to re-illustrate his layouts. In Jungle Book, which was originally released by Ballantine Books in 1959 as a dingy, downscale paperback, Kurtzman’s targets include a jazz/noir mashup, a TV western and most impressively, in “The Organization Man in the Grey Flannel Executive Suite”, a cutting sendup of the fierce sexism that polluted the offices of his former employer, ex-Marvel Comics owner Martin Goodman. This brilliant strip is nonetheless disparaged as “weak” by famed misogynist and Kurtzman discovery R. Crumb, in the afterthought conversation between the underground artist and Peter Poplaski that cabooses this otherwise beautifully-produced hardcover reprint volume.

____________________________________________________________

Andre the Giant: Life and Legend by Box Brown (First Second, $7.99)

Box Andre 1000x745  Reviews: A Murder of Cartoonists

Brown’s biography of wrestling star Andre Roussimoff joins a small group of comics masterpieces that deal with this most theatrical of sports, from Jaime Hernandez’s Whoa Nellie from 2000 to a series of tongue-in-cheek horror collaborations by Mike Mignola and Richard Corben in more recent years, including their 2011 graphic novella House of the Living Dead. Brown’s is a remarkably consistent effort with effective graphic sequences such as the one pictured above and I also admire his restrained handling of the heavily staged fight scenes, as well as his unusual architectural establishing shots. Brown’s stark, spare and precise cartooning create a unique mood, as they contextualize Andre’s success with a tragic acknowledgement of the unrelenting sense of otherness and diminished opportunities for social interaction that he experiences due to his exceedingly unusual scale; as well as his size’s harsh repercussions on his health.

__________________________________________________________

Fear My Dear: A Billy Dogma Experience by Dean Haspiel (Z2 Comics, $19.95)

Dino 1000x495  Reviews: A Murder of Cartoonists

The pair of poetic graphic stories in Fear, My Dear reflect Dino’s unfettered physicality and passionate persona. Since winning an Emmy award for his TV collaboration with Jonathan Ames, Bored to Death and The Alcoholic, their graphic novel from Vertigo, Haspiel has if anything become bolder and more exuberant. For this nicely produced hardcover from Josh Frankel’s new Z squared imprint, the artist uses a four-panels-per-page grid format and a monochromatic color scheme (red in the first piece, yellow and orange in the second, both with an elegant use of white for emphasis) to further define the relationship between his creator-owned characters Billy Dogma and Jane Legit. Their romance haunts post-apocalyptic urban rubble and breaks through to a star-crossed dreamscape, only to end up where they knew they must: together.

____________________________________________________________

How to Pool and Other Comics by Andrea Tsurumi (self-published, not priced)

Andrea 1000x747  Reviews: A Murder of Cartoonists

Marguerite and I used to bask our way through the East Village dog days at the Pit Street Pool, and more recently as guests of the Miami Book Fair, we whiled away every spare moment by the steamy roof pool at our hotel. So, I can totally relate to the lead piece in Tsurumi’s new minicomic, wherein the artist collects a variety of witty graphic vignettes about group soakings in fluoridated waters, among other delicately drawn ironies and anthropomorphisms.

____________________________________________________________

Inkbrick #1 by Rothman, Sullivan, Kearney, Tunis, et al (Inkbrick, not priced)

Alexander 1000x794  Reviews: A Murder of Cartoonists

This pocket-sized anthology of comics that incorporate, or are adapted from, poetry is made up of remarkable short stories done in a variety of mediums that range from full color to black & white. Immediate standouts for me are Paul K. Tunis’s watery montages for “Avenge Me, Eavesdropper,” Gary Sullivan’s oblique ink rendering of horrific Asian mythologies, “Black Magic”; Simone Kearney’s whimsically etched “Mobilization”; and editor Alexander Rothman’s “Keeping Time” (pictured above), a piece apparently finished in colored pencils that inventively expresses non-visual sensory impressions such as sound, smell and touch.

____________________________________________________________

The Graveyard Book, Volumes 1 and 2 by Neil Gaiman, P. Craig Russell et al (Harper Collins, $19.99 each)

Gaiman Nowlan 1000x740  Reviews: A Murder of Cartoonists

Although The Graveyard Book continues Neil Gaiman’s anti-collaborative self-hype at the expense of his artist partners, I do appreciate P. Craig Russell’s adaptations of Gaiman’s stories into comics form. Russell’s elegant cartooning and storytelling are paced far better than if Gaiman had scripted; it worked beautifully for Murder Mysteries, Coraline and The Dream Hunters. Now, for Gaiman’s morbidly charming tale of a live boy shielded from a cabal of serial killers by the shades of the deceased occupants of a cemetery and raised by them to young adulthood, Russell acts artistically in a way similar to Kurtzman’s E.C. methodology: he adapts the text and does layouts; the finishing artists serve as illustrators. This makes for a surprisingly smooth and consistent read. I particularly admire the polished renderings of Kevin Nowlan (seen above), Scott Hampton, Jill Thompson and the Russell-miming Galen Showman; and although a somewhat discordant note is sounded by the grotesqueries of Tony Harris, the whole is unified by colorist Lovern Kindzierski and illuminator Rick Parker, who hand-lettered the text, for me a visual treat in these days of page-deadening digital fonts.

____________________________________________________________

Lazarus #1-9 by Greg Rucka, Michael Lark and Santi Arcas (Image Comics, $2.99 each)

Rucka Lark 1000x769  Reviews: A Murder of Cartoonists

I drew one of Greg Rucka’s first comics stories (“Guts” in DC/Vertigo’s Flinch #8, 2000), but it seems to me that the writer doesn’t take as much advantage as he might of the properties that are unique to comics—almost everything he does might work just as well if not better as TV shows. In his 2012 collaboration with Matthew Southworth, Stumptown, it is Southworth’s expressive drawing that provides most of the interest and its most effective use of the medium is that the artist rendered Vol 2, #4 with a Toth-esque sideways, widescreen layout. For Lazarus, a story of a female assassin in a dystopian, nearly medieval America run by a select group of powerful families that is absorbing enough and has had some striking moments, but still often has a feeling of deja vu about it, a lot of the heavy lifting is provided by artist Michael Lark’s cinematic near-photorealism, accomplished in collaboration with Santi Arcas’ hi-tech color graphics.

____________________________________________________________

Thought Bubble #4 by Kot & Sampson, Lim & Rios, Starkings & Sale et al (Image Comics, $3.99)

Ales Alison 1 1000x753  Reviews: A Murder of Cartoonists

This color tabloid is a showcase for the participants in the UK’s Leeds Comic Art Festival. My favorite piece is a sort of gentle advisory poem that in its course expresses a goal that many sensitive artists hold dear: that of “making things that help other people feel less alone.” It is the work of the writer of Image’s fascinating rotating-artist series Zero, Ales Kot, expressively drawn with upended, widescreen and oblique imagery by Alison Sampson, who just won a British Comic Award for emerging talent; and nicely colored by Jason Wordie. Also notable: a beautiful page by Hwei Lin and Emma Rios; and an Elephantmen strip written by Richard Starkings and elegantly rendered in ink washes by Tim Sale.

____________________________________________________________

Nightworld #s 1-4 by Adam McGovern, Paolo Leandri & Dominic Regan (Image Comics $3.99 each)

Paulo Adam 1000x730  Reviews: A Murder of Cartoonists

A tale of questing, embattled superhero-ish spirits, Nightworld manages to not only convey an approximation of the look of a Jack Kirby comic book, but it also comes closer than anything else I have seen to capturing something of the spirit of that master’s fierce and restless creativity. Artist Leandri hits a spot somewhere between majoring in Kirby, minoring in Steranko and echoing the early work of Barry Smith, back in the day when he was emulating Jack. Leandri’s spreads can look remarkably as if they were actually drawn by Kirby and his character designs and action passages likewise (see example above), without ever feeling as appropriated, or as forced, as those by some other artists who attempt to adhere as closely to the same model. These comics are colored by Regan with an oddly chosen palette that, again, is reminiscent of Kirby’s psychedelic experiments with Dr. Martin’s dyes. Moreover and significantly, writer McGovern’s poetic voice uniquely grasps a sort of post-traumatized and humane melancholy of narrative, the most tragic scenes of which are appropriately followed and leavened in a Shakespearean mode by bursts of frenetic humor, that can be seen in Kirby’s best writing.

____________________________________________________________

2 Comments on Reviews: A Murder of Cartoonists, last added: 12/13/2014
Display Comments Add a Comment
3. Neil Gaiman Recites ‘Jabberwocky’ From Memory

Once again, Neil Gaiman agreed to perform a reading of a beloved children’s story for a Worldbuilders fundraising venture. The choices included Where the Wild Things Are by Maurice Sendak, ‘Jabberwocky’ by Lewis Carroll, Fox in Socks by Dr. Seuss, and Goodnight Moon written by Margaret Wise Brown and illustrated by Clement Hurd.

‘Jabberwocky’ received the most votes and the organization has raised more than $639,000.00. The video embedded above features Gaiman in the woods delivering a dramatic recitation of Carroll’s famous nonsense poem from memory—what do you think?

New Career Opportunities Daily: The best jobs in media.

Add a Comment
4. Wil Wheaton Narrates the Information Doesn’t Want to Be Free Audiobook

Info CoverWriter Cory Doctorow has taken it upon himself to produce the audiobook edition of his book, Information Doesn’t Want to Be Free: Laws for the Internet Age.

According to Doctorow’s blog post, actor Wil Wheaton served as the narrator for this project. It also features “a mixdown by the wonderful John Taylor Williams, and bed-music from Amanda Palmer and Dresden Dolls.”

McSweeney’s released the hardcover version back in November 2014. Both Palmer and her husband Neil Gaiman wrote forewords for this project. (via Neil Gaiman’s Tumblr page)

New Career Opportunities Daily: The best jobs in media.

Add a Comment
5. Indie Bookstores Compete to Win a Visit With Neil Gaiman

Neil Gaiman OceanA group of independent bookstores are competing against one another to win a visit with Neil Gaiman. The shop that sells the most copies of The Ocean at the End of the Lane by the end of this year will come out on top.

According to Gaiman’s Tumblr page, the actual event will take place in February 2015. The participating stores include: 57th Street Books, The Book Cellar, The Book Stall at Chestnut Court, Anderson’s Bookshop, Bethany Beach Books, Chapter One Book Store, Eagle Eye Book Shop, Green Apple Books, Kepler’s Books, Village House of Books, Main Street Books, Watermark Books & Café, Maria’s Bookshop, Moravian Book Shop, Mostly Books, Octavia Books, Tubby & Coo’s Mid-City Book Shop, Old Firehouse Books, Over the Moon Bookstore & Artisan Gallery, Rediscovered Books, St. John’s Booksellers, and the Strand Book Store.

New Career Opportunities Daily: The best jobs in media.

Add a Comment
6. Favourite Teen/YA Reads of 2014 by Savita Kalhan


In January this year I decided to challenge myself to reading 55 books. I did it through Goodreads to track what I’ve read and when I’ve read it. Some of the books I’ve read have been for ‘work’, some for research and others for sheer pleasure.

My to-be-read pile is always huge and there never seems to be enough time for reading, so doing it this way keeps me on track – the message: you’re x number of books behind is enough to spur me on to make more reading time. Apparently, I’m ‘on track’, with a few weeks to go before December 31stby which time I’ll hopefully have made it to the magic 55 books read mark. Looking back over my list of books read, I thought I’d share some of my favourite teen/YA reads of the year.
 

Buffalo Soldier by Tanya Landman
 
 

The Hob and the Deerman by Pat Walsh

 
 
 
The Case of the Screaming Staircase by Jonathan Stroud

Wish Me Dead by Helen Grant

Between Two Seas by Marie-Louise Jensen
The Unicorn Hunter by Che Golden

 
Apache by Tanya Landman

 
 
Eleanor and Park by Rainbow Rowell
 
The Ocean at the End of the Lane by Neil Gaiman

 
 
 
I’ll stop there or else it’ll end up being a very long list! It also makes me wish I had read more of my to-be-read pile.

I hope you’ll share some of your favourite teen/YA reads of the year in the comments – the more book recommendations I get the bigger my smile! Merry Christmas!
 
Facebook

Twitter


0 Comments on Favourite Teen/YA Reads of 2014 by Savita Kalhan as of 12/4/2014 7:15:00 PM
Add a Comment
7. NaNoWriMo Tip #20: Learn From 5 Established Authors

the guardianNaNoWriMo participants have less than 24 hours to complete their project. For our final tip, we’re sharing some of our favorite lessons from five established authors who contributed to The Guardian’sTen Rules For Writing Fiction” piece.

01. “Try to leave out the part that readers tend to skip.” — Elmore Leonard

02. “Have regrets. They are fuel. On the page they flare into desire.” — Geoff Dyer

03. “Do back exercises. Pain is distracting.” — Margaret Atwood

04. “Remember you love writing. It wouldn’t be worth it if you didn’t. If the love fades, do what you need to and get it back.” — A.L. Kennedy

05. “Finish what you’re writing. Whatever you have to do to finish it, finish it.” — Neil Gaiman

This is our twentieth NaNoWriMo Tip of the Day. To help GalleyCat readers take on the challenge of writing a draft for a 50,000-word novel in 30 days, we will be offering advice throughout the entire month.

New Career Opportunities Daily: The best jobs in media.

Add a Comment
8. Neil Gaiman Announces Air Dates For ‘Good Omens’ Radio Adaptation

I have borrowed Aziraphale's flaming sword to let you know that Good Omens starts on Dec 22nd on BBC Radio 4. Look! pic.twitter.com/ST81u6tnBv

— Neil Gaiman (@neilhimself) November 27, 2014

BBC Radio 4′s Good Omens dramatization will air from December 22nd to 27th.

Neil Gaiman, who co-wrote the book with Terry Pratchett, made an announcement on Twitter. The cast includes Colin Morgan, Charlotte Ritchie, Mark Heap, Peter Serafinowicz, Paterson Joseph, and Louise Brealey.

Here’s more from RadioTimes.com: “Good Omens follows the attempts of an angel and a demon (Heap and Serafinowicz) to save the world from the antichrist, but all is not as it seems thanks to a bureaucratic mix-up. Soon, the fate of humanity is left to a gang of young children, a trainee witchfinder (Morgan) and a collection of garbled flashcards.”

New Career Opportunities Daily: The best jobs in media.

Add a Comment
9. Neil Gaiman Reads a Poorly Written ‘Neil Gaiman’ Style Story

What does a poorly written Neil Gaiman short story sound like? The Wits radio station hosted the “Bad Gaiman Challenge” to try to answer that question. Hundreds of submissions came in.

The video embedded above features Gaiman reading the “worst of the worst” pieces—what do you think? Follow this link to view photos. Click here to watch a video clip from the event.

New Career Opportunities Daily: The best jobs in media.

Add a Comment
10. Neil Gaiman & Ursula Le Guin at the National Book Awards

ursula_leguinAuthor Neil Gaiman presented the 2014 Medal for Distinguished Contribution to American Letters to Ursula Le K. Le Guin at the National Book Awards this evening.

Before tonight, the two had only met once in an elevator at a sci-fi writer’s conference more than two decades ago in the Midwest. They were on an elevator together and she asked him, ”Are there any room parties tonight that you know of?”  and he replied, “I don’t know.”

While Gaiman had never met LeGuin in person, her work played a huge role in influencing his writing. As a young writer, Gaiman couldn’t figure out how to copy her style as he did with other writers because her work was so “clean.” So he cheated and read her essays on writing to help inform his own writing when he was a young writer.

“She raised my consciousness,” he said explaining that she opened his eyes to women’s issues. “She made me a better writer and much more importantly, she made me a better person who wrote.” (more…)

New Career Opportunities Daily: The best jobs in media.

Add a Comment
11. Amanda Palmer Stars in Book Trailer

Rock star Amanda Palmer unveiled a book trailer for The Art of Asking. She became inspired to write her new nonfiction book after she gave a TED talk in 2013. In the video embedded above, Palmer plays piano and shares her ideas on asking—do you have any regrets about not asking for something?

At the night of the book launch, she celebrated the publication with an event at Porter Square Books. Click here to listen to her lead the crowd in singing the “Happy Birthday” song to her husband Neil Gaiman. Do you predict that Gaiman and Palmer may collaborate on a writing project one day together?

New Career Opportunities Daily: The best jobs in media.

Add a Comment
12. Neil Gaiman Praises The First Amendment

Author Neil Gaiman has shot a video praising the first amendment. In the video embedded above, Gaiman talks about how he came to realize the value of free speech after he came to the United States. The NCAC honored Gaiman at a gala event earlier this month along with Robie H. Harris and the Trumbull High Thespian Society.

New Career Opportunities Daily: The best jobs in media.

Add a Comment
13. Neil Gaiman Shares 4 Tips For Reading Stories to Kids

Neil Gaiman & Lorenzo MattottiOver the weekend, writer Neil Gaiman and artist Lorenzo Mattotti appeared together at the New York City independent bookstore McNally Jackson to promote Hansel & Gretel. At the event, Gaiman read an excerpt from the story in front of an audience that included a plethora of both adults and kids.

Gaiman is no stranger to presenting stories to children being both a father and a Newbery Medal winner. During the Q&A session, he offered some guidance for reading stories to young people.

Below, we’ve collected some of his advice. Do you have any further recommendations to add?

(more…)

New Career Opportunities Daily: The best jobs in media.

Add a Comment
14. 24 Hours of Halloween: Hansel and Gretel by Mattotti and Gaiman—with events!

HG.Front .cvr .GB  24 Hours of Halloween: Hansel and Gretel by Mattotti and Gaiman—with events!

This extraordinary book—surely one of the most beautiful picture books of the year— has a complicated history. It began with Mattotti’s phenomenal illustrations, originally commissioned for the Metropolitan Opera’s 2007 production of Engelbert Humperdink’s opera Hansel and Gretel. Later French publisher Gallimand commissioned Jean-Claude Mourlevat to write text to go with it. And now Neil Gaiman has done an all new adaptation of the story. I was lucky enough to hear Gaiman read this at Carnegie Hall earlier in the year and it’s a stunning version of the tale…but it’s Mattotti’s claustrophobic, world building art that makes this one of the books of the year. In his world. the unlucky children are mere black blobs with a thin armor of white space protecting them from a tangled web of darkness.

This book is the center of several events this weekend. Neil Gaiman is speaking at the NYPL this evening, and it’s being live streamed.

And Mattotti himself appears tomorrow morning at McNAlly Jackson Books in Soho. He will have books re-signed by Gaiman on hand but Gaiman will not be appearing…however, if you are very lucky maybe the great Mattotti will doodle something in your copy of this masterpiece.

WHEN:
November 1, 2014 at 11:30AM

WHERE:
McNally Jackson Books
52 Prince Street
(between Lafayette & Mulberry)
New York City, NY 10012

WHAT:
Come hear Lorenzo talk about his art and share more about the making of Hansel & Gretel.  After the event, copies of Hansel & Gretel, presigned by Neil Gaiman, can be signed and personalized by Lorenzo.

HG.g.GB frontend 1 24 Hours of Halloween: Hansel and Gretel by Mattotti and Gaiman—with events!

HG.g.GB pp.10 11 24 Hours of Halloween: Hansel and Gretel by Mattotti and Gaiman—with events!

 

HG.g.GB pp.14 15 24 Hours of Halloween: Hansel and Gretel by Mattotti and Gaiman—with events!

0 Comments on 24 Hours of Halloween: Hansel and Gretel by Mattotti and Gaiman—with events! as of 1/1/1900
Add a Comment
15. ‘HarperCollins Presents’ Podcast Series Launched

harpercollins1HarperCollins Publishers has launched a new global podcast network called “HarperCollins Presents.”

Here’s more from the press release: “Each week the HarperCollins Presents podcast series will feature an exchange of ideas from leading authors and creatives – from home-grown heroes to global stars. It will take listeners behind the scenes, explaining the mysteries of the creative process and inspiring fans to think differently.”

The podcasts can be downloaded from iTunes, SoundCloud, and Stitcher. Currently, fans can listen to episodes featuring Coraline author Neil Gaiman, Divergent author Veronica Roth, and Rooms author Lauren Oliver. The executives behind this series plans to create new content with filmmaker David Cronenberg, the Kay Scarpetta series author Patricia Cornwell, and the No. 1 Ladies’ Detective Agency series author Alexander McCall Smith.

New Career Opportunities Daily: The best jobs in media.

Add a Comment
16. Neil Gaiman On the Value of Scary Stories

Newbery Medal winner Neil Gaiman sat with TOON Books publisher Françoise Mouly and Pulitzer Prize winner Art Spiegelman to discuss his new graphic novel, Hansel and Gretel. The video embedded above features the entire conversation.

Gaiman confesses that the “Hansel and Gretel” fairy tale really frightens him, but he does believe that children must be exposed to dark stories. Gaiman thinks that “if you are protected from dark things then you have no protection of, knowledge of, or understanding of dark things when they show up. I think it is really important to show dark things to kids—and in the showing, to also show that dark things can be beaten, that you have power.”

(more…)

New Career Opportunities Daily: The best jobs in media.

Add a Comment
17. Cover Unveiled For ‘Trigger Warning’ By Neil Gaiman

Trigger Warning

The cover for Neil Gaiman’s Trigger Warning: Short Fictions and Disturbances has been unveiled. We’ve embedded the full image above—what do you think?

This anthology contains previously published short stories, a Doctor Who story that was written to celebrate the fiftieth anniversary of the science-fiction TV series, and a tale that revisits the universe of American Gods called “Black Dog.” William Morrow, an imprint at HarperCollins, will release the book on February 03, 2015. (via USA Today)

New Career Opportunities Daily: The best jobs in media.

Add a Comment
18. The British Library Hosts Exhibition on Gothic Storytelling

The British Library is hosting a display focused on gothic storytelling called “Terror and Wonder: The Gothic Imagination.” It will run until January 20, 2015.

The United Kingdom’s “biggest ever Gothic exhibition” features 200 rare objects; some of these pieces shine the spotlight on works by writers Mary Shelley, Bram Stoker, and Clive Barker. Visitors will see ”posters, books, film and even a vampire-slaying kit.”

We’ve embedded a video about this exhibit—what do you think? Click here to learn more about it. Follow this link to read an essay by Neil Gaiman entitled “My hero: Mary Shelley.”

New Career Opportunities Daily: The best jobs in media.

Add a Comment
19. Ursula LeGuin to Receive Lifetime Achievement Award

Ursula K. LeGuinSci-fi novelist Ursula K. Le Guin will received the National Book Awards 2014 Medal for Distinguished Contribution to American Letters. Le Guin will be honored at the 65th  National Book Awards Ceremony and Benefit Dinner in New York on November 19th. Author Neil Gaiman will present her with the award.

“Ursula Le Guin has had an extraordinary impact on several generations of readers and, particularly, writers in the United States and around the world,” stated Harold Augenbraum, Executive Director of The National Book Foundation. “She has shown how great writing will obliterate the antiquated—and never really valid—line between popular and literary art. Her influence will be felt for decades to come.”

The award was created in 1988 and Le Guin will be the twenty-seventh author receive the honor. She joins Toni Morrison, E.L. Doctorow, John Ashbery, Joan Didion, Elmore Leonard, Norman Mailer and Tom Wolfe among others.

As usual, GalleyCat will be reporting live from the awards event, check back in November for our live coverage.

New Career Opportunities Daily: The best jobs in media.

Add a Comment
20. “Young girl, I declare you are not like most men”: retranslating The Poetic Edda

Not every scholar of medieval English has the privilege of translating a major poetic text, and fewer still have the chance to do it all over again, eighteen years later. My first edition of the Poetic Edda was published in 1996 and about two years ago, I was invited to think about a second edition, one which would expand the number of poems and which could be brought up to date in other ways. But what could have changed as far as this classic work was concerned in the meantime?

Well, unlike a single poem, such as Beowulf or Piers Plowman, the Poetic Edda is a collection of poems. Most of these are to be found in a single manuscript, known as the Codex Regius, kept in the Árnar Magnússonar Manuscript Institute in Reykjavík, Iceland. But, preserved in other Icelandic manuscripts, are a good number of further poems in the same kind of metre, which relate more stories of Norse gods and heroes. Four or five of these poems have always been considered part of the Poetic Edda and I translated them in the first edition. But now there was room for some more.

Peter_Nicolai_Arbo-Hervors_død
“Hervors død” by Peter Nicolai Arbo (Hervor was a shieldmaiden in the cycle of the magic sword Tyrfing, presented in Hervarar saga and of which parts are found in the Poetic Edda). Public Domain via Wikimedia Commons.

I’ve added three more eddic poems which I think are interesting in different ways. The first of them is traditionally known as “The Waking of Angantyr.” It tells the story of a warrior-maiden Hervör, who dares to go alone to an eerie island, haunted by her undead father and his eleven brothers. Hervör wants her father’s magical sword Tyrfing, but Angantyr is determined not to give it to her. He’s quite surprised that a girl should dare to come to the uncanny place:

Young girl, I declare you are not like most men,
hanging around by mounds at night
with an engraved spear and in metal of the Goths [armour],
a helmet and corslet before the hall-doors.

At first Angantyr pretends that he doesn’t have the sword, next, he warns (truthfully) that the sword bears a curse, but finally he hands it over to the triumphant Hervör. A bold and determined heroine and an undead corpse — this seemed like a good addition to the new translation. The other additions are “Groa’s Chant” and the “Sayings of Fiolsvinn,” two related poems. A young man called Svipdag has been cursed by his stepmother to go on a quest to find and woo the lovely Menglod, a task fraught with danger: “she has ordered me to go where she knows there’s no going,” Svipdag laments. Wisely, he first visits the grave of his dead mother for advice. Groa is indeed anxious to help and she sings a number of spells over Svipdag. If he crosses rivers or sea, if he’s chained up or assailed by frost, “may no corpse-cold come to ravage your flesh / nor bind your body in its joints.”

Groa chants spells for her son, from The Elder or Poetic Edda, translated by Olive Bray with illustrations by W. G. Collingwood (1908). Public Domain via Wikimedia Commons.

Groa’s last spell will help Svipdag if he must “bandy words with the spear-magnificent giant,” and this is exactly what happens. When the hero finally reaches Menglod’s hall, the watchman Fiolsvinn won’t let him in. Entrance is only permitted to the man who can fulfill a whole series of impossible tasks, set up in a circular fashion. Svipdag is about to despair, but wait! No man can come in unless he has carried out this task — or unless his name is Svipdag! And so when Svipdag reveals his name, he gains entry to the hall and is rapturously embraced by Menglod, who chides him lovingly, “A long time I’ve sat on Healing-rock / waiting day after day for you!”

What constitutes a medieval poem? One of the most important poems in the Poetic Edda, “The Seeress’s Prophecy” exists in three different versions in medieval Icelandic manuscripts. Very often editors have combined the texts of all three versions to try to recover what they think might have been the “original” form of the poem. But nowadays scholars tend to think that this is a pointless endeavor. After all, this poem probably existed in oral tradition for a hundred or more years before it was first written down and there was likely never a definitive version. Newer critical thinking argues that it is better to reproduce what actually appears in the medieval manuscripts than to try to find the lost original. And so I’ve provided two versions of this poem, one written down in 1270, and one which was written down about forty years later. In the earlier version, the death of Baldr the Beautiful ushers in the beginning of the end of the world: Ragnarök. Baldr’s mother Frigg had made everything on earth promise not to hurt him, but she did not bother with the mistletoe, for it was so little and frail. Wicked Loki shaped it into a dart and put it in the hands of Baldr’s blind brother Hod when all the gods were amusing themselves by throwing things at Baldr and watching them bounce harmlessly from him. Here Baldr lounges against a wall, while Loki guides the fumbling and hooded Hod:

The Death of Baldr, from The Elder or Poetic Edda, translated by Olive Bray with illustrations by W. G. Collingwood (1908). Public Domain via Wikimedia Commons.

In the later version, preserved in the Hauksbók manuscript, which was compiled in the first decade of the fourteenth century, Baldr isn’t even mentioned; that seems to be a difference worth recording, and it suggests that the death of Baldr wasn’t necessarily connected to Ragnarök.

And perhaps most importantly, eighteen years ago talking about the reception of the Poetic Edda meant talking about Wagner, William Morris, and Tolkien. Nowadays the influence of these wonderful poems is felt much more widely, in popular culture as well as in the opera house. Hollywood has its Thor films; novelists such as Neil Gaiman in American Gods (2001), young adult authors such as Melvin Burgess and Joanne Harris, even Game of Thrones, with its dragons, ravens, shield-maidens, its endless winter, wolves and giants, have seized on eddic themes and motifs to capture the imaginations of new generations. I hope that this new version of the Poetic Edda, with its additions, updates, and revisions will also find new readers to thrill to these poems, which speak to us in comic, tragic, grandiose, crude, witty, profound, and commonsense tones.

The post “Young girl, I declare you are not like most men”: retranslating The Poetic Edda appeared first on OUPblog.

0 Comments on “Young girl, I declare you are not like most men”: retranslating The Poetic Edda as of 9/11/2014 8:12:00 AM
Add a Comment
21. Neil Gaiman On Terry Pratchett’s Angry Side

Terry Pratchett BookNeil Gaiman has written the foreword for Terry Pratchett’s forthcoming collection, A Slip of the Keyboard: Collected NonfictionThe Guardian published a section of Gaiman’s piece where he talks about Pratchett’s “angry” side. Here’s an excerpt:

“There is a fury to Terry Pratchett’s writing: it’s the fury that was the engine that powered Discworld. It’s also the anger at the headmaster who would decide that six-year-old Terry Pratchett would never be smart enough for the 11-plus; anger at pompous critics, and at those who think serious is the opposite of funny; anger at his early American publishers who could not bring his books out successfully.”

(more…)

New Career Opportunities Daily: The best jobs in media.

Add a Comment
22. Malcolm Gladwell Speaks Out Against Amazon

amazon304Many members of the literary community have shown great concern about the Amazon vs. Hachette dispute. In an interview with the Financial Times weekend magazine, Malcolm Gladwell spoke out in disapproval of the online retail giant’s retaliatory actions.

While Gladwell did not voice an opinion about the actual feud, he objects to Amazon’s practice of making Hachette’s books unavailable for purchase and delaying order shipments. Gladwell “thought Amazon wanted to be nice to me. I thought their endgame was to woo authors. So, then why are they sabotaging us?”

(more…)

New Career Opportunities Daily: The best jobs in media.

Add a Comment
23. Neil Gaiman & Amanda Palmer Sign On as Indies First Spokespeople

Neil Gaiman & Amanda PalmerThe American Booksellers Association has recruited Newbery Medal-winning author Neil Gaiman and his rockstar wife Amanda Palmer (both pictured, via) to serve as spokespeople for this year’s Indies First campaign.

Gaiman and Palmer penned an open letter calling for fellow writers to participate. Those who answer the call will be serving as volunteer sellers at their favorite independent bookstores on Saturday, November 29th (aka “Small Business Saturday“).

National Book Award winner Sherman Alexie conceived of the idea and helped to launch this initiative last year. More than 1,100 authors participated in the 2013 event including Kelly Barson, Cheryl Strayed, and Jon Scieszka.

New Career Opportunities Daily: The best jobs in media.

Add a Comment
24. Visit With Syrian Refugees Influenced Neil Gaiman’s Take On ‘Hansel & Gretel’

4231596_origAuthor Neil Gaiman took away many ideas from an emotional visit to Jordan where he met Syrian refugees.

In an interview with CNN‘s Christiane Amanpour, Gaiman reveals that this experience affected how he wrote his re-telling of “Hansel and Gretel.” Gaiman sets this classic story of lost children in a world torn by war and famine; he feels this is highly reminiscent of the suffering endured by Syrian refugee children as well as the Grimm Brothers’ version of the tale.

Toon Books will release the finished graphic novel, which features illustrations by artist Lorenzo Mattotti, on October 28th. Click here to watch the entire interview. Follow this link to read Gaiman’s blog post recounting his trip.

New Career Opportunities Daily: The best jobs in media.

Add a Comment
25. Bloomsbury UK to Publish Neil Gaiman Short Story as a Book

The Sleeper & The SpindleBloomsbury UK will publish Neil Gaiman’s short story, The Sleeper and the Spindle, as a book.

Gaiman drew inspiration for this piece from the “Sleeping Beauty” fairy tale. It was originally published in a 2013 anthology entitled Rags & Bones: New Twists on Timeless Tales.

Artist Chris Riddell created illustrations for this project. The publication date has been scheduled for October 23, 2014. Earlier this year, HarperCollins released its own version of The Sleeper and the Spindle in the U.S.A. to celebrate California Bookstore Day. What do you think?

New Career Opportunities Daily: The best jobs in media.

Add a Comment

View Next 25 Posts