Do or Do Not.

Where’s Neil When You Need Him?

with 3 comments

Okay, I’ve got a question that’s been bugging me for three years, and I think you people reading this site are just the ones to help me.

For the first ten years of my Neil Gaiman Fandom, I pronounced his name in my head so that it rhymed with “Hey, man!” Never once did it occur to me that this pronunciation might not be correct — the word “aim” was right there in the middle of his name, so GAYM-en it was.

But shortly after I started at the job I have now three years ago, one of my coworkers insisted (with some vehemence, I might add) that Gaiman’s name was pronounced so that it rhymed with “Pie, man!” I didn’t feel I had any grounds to be able to argue my opinion with any certainty, as I’d never heard his name spoken by anyone I could think of as an authoritative source on the matter. So I did what I frequently do in arguments: I shut my mouth and let the other person continue in his belief, whether said belief was correct or not.

Since then, I’ve heard the name pronounced both ways. The Wikipedia entry on Neil backs up my long-held supposition, but I don’t consider the Wikipedia infallible with this kind of info. I know that at least a couple of my friends have seen the man speak live, so I’m hoping you folks who have done so can give me something definitive — did he speak his own name? And if so, how did he say it? Is he the HEY-man or the PIE-man?

Written by Allen

May 21st, 2006 at 3:50 pm

3 Responses to 'Where’s Neil When You Need Him?'

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  1. I love Neil Gaiman, particularly Neverwhere, hands-down one of the most fascinating, creative stories that I’ve ever read.

    I’ve picked up Anansi Boys a couple of times, but have yet to purchase it. I also hear that American Gods is really good.

    As far as his name goes, according to Mr. Gaiman himself:


    How do you pronounce your last name? Is it gay-man or guy-man or something else?

    It’s Gaym’n.

    Jeff Newberry

    21 May 06 at 4:23 pm

  2. American Gods is excellent, though the ending felt a little flat to me. I’ve got a copy of Anansi Boys right now that a friend let me borrow (signed by the author, even!), but I haven’t had a chance to dig into it. I think I might have to do so very soon, though… I’m getting a little bit of a Gaiman itch (which, combined with the Sorkin rash I’ve had lately, is leaving me quite uncomfortable).

    (I forget — have you read any/all of The Sandman yet? And if not, why the hell not and when are you gonna start?)

    Thanks for backing me up, man! :)


    21 May 06 at 4:30 pm

  3. I second the recommend for American Gods. I like the ending just fine, though; the middle bogs down a little for me.

    And I, for one, plan on starting Sandman this summer. Haven’t read a word or seen a panel, ever.

    Timmy B

    22 May 06 at 9:04 am

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