Neil Gaiman Opened Up About A Challenging Early-Career Experience That Should Prove Encouraging For All Writers

Fiction writing can be rough stuff. Not only do you have to (in the words of Neil Gaiman’s Twitter bio) be adept at “making things up and writing them down,” but you gotta sell that stuff. And after that stuff gets published, you gotta promote, which means that book signings and the like must happen. Hopefully, some people show up, but that isn’t always the case. As Gaiman confirmed on Twitter, he and Good Omens co-author Terry Pratchett had a dud of an experience in the early 1990s.

This happened only a few short years after Gaiman’s The Sandman began its legendary comic book run. Both works have now become currently successful (not to mention rather phenomenal) streaming adaptations, so in other words, stick with it, people. Because back in the day, Neil and Terry actually showed up to an empty book signing, as showcased on Twitter by Professor Mark Wright.

“Nobody showed up to your book signing?” Wright tweeted. “Meh, happens to the best of us. Literally. Neil Gaiman and Terry Pratchett are the best of us. And no one showed up to their signing of GOOD OMENS in Manhattan… So, y’know, chin up.”

Neil confirmed the truth of the matter. “We were meant to have been there for 2 hours,” the Coraline author tweeted. “After an hour of nobody in the store we told the store manager that we were going back to our hotel and that we would be in the bar, and if anyone came to get a book signed to send them there to us. Nobody came.”

He added that this went down in 1990, but he had a 2003 repeat in France.

That’s wild, but it goes to show that you, too, can maybe one day be lucky enough to have people ask you what happens when a werewolf bites a goldfish or ask George R.R. Martin about bodily functions. Life takes some wild turns, man.