Celebrated literary figure Neil Gaiman turns 50 years old today. He’s surely the man who did as much to make comics part of the mainstream as anyone who’s ever lived. He marks the occasion on his blog, of course:
I’m feeling so odd about turning 50. The last time I felt like this was, strangely enough, when I turned 24.
I’d liked being younger than 24. Anything cool I did, people would say “And he’s so young,” and that felt good. And then suddenly I was 24 and I felt like I couldn’t be a boy wonder any longer, and the world had become level.
Turning 50, I feel like, damn: I can’t be a promising young writer any longer. For the last decade, I’ve hated getting Lifetime Achievement awards, they’d make me feel squirmy and awkward, and now I’m going, ah, I’m going to have to accept them with good grace.
But I’m glad I’m a writer. There are a lot of professions in which you’re done by my age. And I don’t feel done at all.
The above photo is from yesterday, taken in New Orleans, where he’s celebrating with a few close friends.
…and from a while ago…
The internet is rife with Neil Gaiman photos, and yet they all look so…Neil Gaiman-y. He has that effect.
Here with his betrothed, musician Amanda Palmer, which recalls…
Lots of personal memories of Neil, from our first meeting where we talked about each others shoes to dinner in a spinning restaurant with the McCloud family to interviewing him in front of the biggest crowd I’ve ever been in front of at the West Hollywood Book Fair to the dreams that an issue of SANDMAN gave me. Good memories. A good person. A great writer. I’m happy to know that the man who I first knew as a penpal is now a writer who has touched millions of people with his imagination. Here’s to many more, Neil.
Heidi MacDonald is the founder and editor in chief of The Beat. In the past, she worked for Disney, DC Comics, Fox and Publishers Weekly. She can be heard regularly on the More To Come Podcast. She likes coffee, cats and noble struggle.