If you are just here for the fashion and prancing you can read the first paragrpah, skip the rest and go to the pics because all the rest is meditating on meeting your heroes. Which kind of happened this week.
The outfit I am wearing in these photos went through several developments before this look was chosen. I originally wore the dress with a skirt over the top and then whined that I looked a bit too hippyish with no straight lines in my look. My boy did not get these complaints. Then I took the skirt off and wore shorts and little socks with bows on and a blazer and then accused myself of looking like a Chalet School on the weekend. Then I added my new scarf! On my birthday post I said I had four new scarves which I will be showing you over a steady period. This one is my elephant one and is super soft, like cuddling to send you to sleep soft. And after all that I was ready to set off into town for some photographs!
This week I got to meet Mike Carey which was a fascinating experience for me. He is a graphic novel/comic book writer, although he has also written a successful prose series. If you are into these things he has written Lucifer and The Unwritten. These are big deal Vertigo comics that I have read and loved. This guy is a big deal. And there he was opening a library collection in Hertforshire, reading a story out loud, and chatting to me about myths.
See, I'm quite a shy person really. When I meet new people I try and cover up the shyness with humour or controversial opinions but I am always an introvert pretending to be an extrovert. So when I met Neil Gaiman I crumble away in nothingness. Neil Gaiman in my favourite author (or Dianna Wynne Jones is, depending on my mood) and I have been to a number of events with him present. I wrote my dissertation on his work. I have most of his books; read his blog and tumblr; follow his Twitter and quote him in conversation. Yet, whilst I believe him to be a nice person, the overwhelming awesome of his person makes me mumble and run, or on the last occasion look at the signing line and say like a quitter "to even queue would make me sad because nothing I can say in the sixty seconds together will let him know how much he means to me", so I just walk out.
Back to Mike Carey. I was not only was front of the queue (second to the boy eager to use this as an opportunity to get into comics), I actually talked about my favourite work of his and we actually discussed Neil Gaiman's Sandman a little and why Lyta Hall was such a great character. He told me I was clearly his key audience for his book The Furies. I had to let the next person through, but he said he would like to speak again if I hung around and, as I was getting a lift back with the event organiser, I did. In all this I didn't feel my usual shyness or crippling insecurities. I didn't worry about whether he would respect me or understand that I was somehow special. I just felt like me. Talking to a person. About books.
And that's the kind of thing that makes me happy.
What's the difference between them? I'm not sure there is one. Gaiman is more famous than Mike, it's true. But Carey is by no means obscure, as I said. I think the difference is in me and my attitude. I just refused to let myself be awed-out of myself. I think maybe next time I see Gaiman (in October at a talk on myth: booyah!) I will stand in the queue, take my books and let those sixty seconds just exist without having to mean something. And hey, maybe Neil will respect me anyway.
|Dress: ebay; jacket: New Look; Short: present; Hat: charity shop; Socks: some random little shop; Shoes: Matalan|
|There are always several photos where I just laugh at it all. This is where it begins.|
|Elephants are not Irrelevant.|
|Woa. It's my face! HUGE. Looks kind of weird, but I like my little freckles.|
|We do so many photos these days! Andy is getting trigger happy!|