At his Cemetery Story, released in ACT this spring, Neil Gaiman, a former comic book author, painted a tombstone with the name of his fan. The Bram Stoker Prize Laureate talks about fears – in books and life.
“Fantasy is worse than fairy tales. In fairy tales, everything is sketchy. We don’t know what kind of person Cinderella was, we only know that she was hardworking, therefore, if you happen to her, we won’t be very sorry for her. In fantasy, there is a documentary element. In the novel Never, I, as a former journalist, described London in great detail, and made the characters look like neighbors. Due to such believable “wallpapers”, an implausible story becomes scary. I had two occasions in my life when I myself was very scared. When I was little, my parents and I rode a boat.
On one of the islands, mom and dad started a quarrel. I remember this abandoned island, an empty beach, my parents are arguing, and I am completely defenseless, because they are my only hope for salvation. The second time it was the other way around. One day, Mike’s son got under a car, he was taken to the hospital. He was not afraid, but I was terrified. One part of my mind was beating hysterical, the other was trying to make some kind of decision, but there was also a third that said: “Remember this and include it in the next book.” So the fear in my books is often based on my own feelings. Now I’m afraid of Moscow: I’m just from the subway, and it seems to me that a huge Bear lives near Moscow, like the Boar near London and the Tiger near Bombay. ”