Today, Ladies and Gentlemen, I get to hear Neil Gaiman speak in Toldeo, OH. I'm so excited I can't wait for 7pm to roll around. He's one of my favorite authors and is very prolific in various genres.
Though I think my all time favorite piece is an issue out of his Sandman chronicles graphic novel. Sandman #19: A Midsummer Night's Dream.
In this story, he tells us that Dream (Sandman) is Shakespeare's muse and that Dream gave him the entire story of Midsummer Night's Dream but that he had to promise to perform it whenever Dream asked. He of course agreed. And one day he's walking through the English countryside between cities and Dream appears. He asks Shakespeare to get his troupe ready for a performance. Dream will get the audience while he prepares. Come to find that the audience is the real life counterpart to the characters in the show. King Auberon, Queen Titana and Puck all appear to view the show. They of course offer their opinions and the best part (I think) is what Puck does at the end to show just what a trickster he can be.
In fact, this story is so good that it won the World Fantasy Award for short fiction in 1991. The only comic book to ever do so. After Neil won the award, some hoity toity's in the fantasy world decided that comic books shouldn't win that award ever again. So now, graphic novels/comic books are eligible for a Special Award:Professional World Fantasy Award.
If you've never read it I suggest you check it out.
And in honor of Halloween, I give you this little beauty. Neil Gaiman reading "The Graveyard Book" (a young adult novel).