Neil Gaiman speaks in stories. It’s no wonder his words have become so beloved, with old favorites like “The Sandman” and “Good Omens” remaining at the top of must-read lists while he continues to churn out new hits every year (his latest, “Eternity’s Wheel,” is due May 19). The man behind the prose is equally witty, quirky and fantastical — and all his accomplishments can’t conceal someone who really just wants to bring you along on an adventure. Crawl into a magical evening with the master storyteller as he spins new tales and retells a few old gems Friday at Constitution Hall.
How has the tour been going?
All of [the shows] are a bit different. I like the idea of doing more readings and slightly less Q-and-A. Which doesn’t mean that it’s not going to be a Q-and-A, it just means that the entire shape of the evening is probably not going to be driven by answering questions. I love the idea of just telling stories.
Does it ever start to feel like a play instead of a talk?
If I can, I’ll always try and read some unpublished things. For me, as a storyteller, I love anything I do where people don’t know how it’s going to end. There’s a particular feeling you can get talking to a hall of a thousand people, telling them a story when they don’t know what’s going to happen next, and the space gets quieter and quieter.
People always talk about books putting them on the edge of their seat. You actually get to see it happening.
Absolutely. The coughs start to go away, people are shifting less, you can say something and you can hear them look up toward you. That’s magic.
You’re so active on social media. Has it become a distraction for you when you’re trying to write?
If you do social media and you get good at it and if it’s fun, then the Web starts feeling like your own personal Tamagotchi. You feel like you’re meant to keep it alive and keep it awake.
Lately, you’ve been writing young-adult novels and some quicker reads. Do you feel an obligation to put out a chunky adult novel next?
Oh, things happen, sometimes at the same time. In my head right now, there’s a short, funny, sort of very Roald Dahl book about some frogs. I know how that goes, and I know what the beats are. But having said that, I also definitely feel that there’s a hefty, chunky novel waiting in my future. A lot of what I’m doing right now feels like I’m cleaning my desk, getting things out of the way.
Is it ever hard for you to put out a book because it’s too personal?
It can be hard to write because it’s too personal. The difficulty is in the writing process. Once it’s written, I’m not embarrassed by it. I’m happy to let it out
DAR Constitution Hall, 1776 D St. NW; Fri., 8 p.m., $34.50-$57.
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