Neil Gaiman's advice for aspiring writers

Neil Gaiman's advice for aspiring writers

Neil Gaiman shares his tips for aspiring writers during his talk with Daniel Handler at BAM.

From En Garde!: Neil Gaiman and Daniel Handler
BAM Howard Gilman Opera House
Feb 17, 2015

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what is your number one tip for an aspiring writer I finish things yeah I get to work you know that's that's gonna be I mean right is is only takes you so far finish things takes you most of the rest of the way right things people want to read right things you care about um don't you know I get I get puzzled and lost when people start asking me questions about what they should be writing for the market whatever there is no market nobody there's nobody in the whole world of of marketing ever would have woken up one day and said series of unfortunate events is exactly what the world needs us you know nobody would have turned around and gone are your market niche is do a sort of reply to Kipling's The Jungle Book thats not you know things like that happen because somebody wants to tell a story and because you have an idea because you think you can tell that story better than anybody else and it turns out there's room which is I think so inspiring to me I mean when I was starting out I felt like there wasn't room I think it's something that our characters feel and books that we do that they feel shut out Coraline thinks what am I doing here Gwen thinks I want to leave the world and be a pirate and I think that it speaks to some alienation that you feel when you're starting out as a writer you think there is literature and that is there's the stupid scribbles that I'm doing and there's no room for it and it turns out there is it turns out that the world of literature is infinite and wide and I'm forever grateful to be part of the adventure where people come to a dark room and talk about it thank you very much

18 thoughts on “Neil Gaiman's advice for aspiring writers

  1. The shittiest published story is still better than the most wonderful story that is still unfinished in your laptop. As Jake Parker said: "Finished, not perfect."

  2. I don’t think I can tell my story better than anyone else..but I know I can tell it in the way I intend to tell it, better then anyone else

  3. Neil Gaiman's first rule should be: don't ever read my work.
    He is a fine graphic novel or comic writer but an absolutely terrible novelist. He just cannot tell a story in traditional novel format.

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