Sunday, October 15, 2006

James Herbert and Alan Moore

Katy rang me up Monday evening. "James Herbert is doing a signing in London tomorrow! We have to go!"

Now I've never read James Herbert but Katy is a huge fan so I said, fine, we'll go.

Only problem was I wasn't sure if I could get into London in time for the signing so I thought it might be better if Katy met me at the signing rather than at Holborn as she originally suggested. But Katy didn't know how to get to Borders where the signing was being held. So, as is the tradition in these cases, I gave her a needlessly complicated set of directions which would probably result in her ending up in the furthest reaches of Outer Mongolia.

Fortunately not only did I manage to catch a train as soon as I entered the station I also caught the fast train which shaves twenty minutes off the journey. Consequently I phoned Katy and told her I could meet her at Holborn after all. Even better since I was now arriving early I had time to pop into Forbidden Planet and peruse the comics.

As I entered the shop I spotted Paul Kane and Marie O'Regan. Turned out they were down in London to visit Marie's son. As we chatted I mentioned the James Herbert signing and their faces fell. "We think it's been cancelled. We were supposed to be interviewing him today and he cancelled due to illness. So presumably the signing is off too."

It was too late to phone Katy and tell her not to bother making the journey so I set off to Holborn to meet her.

When she arrived I told her the bad news and then stepped out of range. Fortunately she was in stoic mode. "Well, the shop's only round the corner. We'll have a look, see if it is still on."

We got to Borders and searched for posters indicating whether the event was still going ahead. There were none to be seen.

Finally we spotted a poster. JAMES HERBERT SIGNING. We breathed sighs of relief.

And then the man standing in front of the poster moved to one side, revealing the rest of the text. HAS BEEN CANCELLED.

So we went down the pub instead.

A few days later I went to an interview with Alan Moore and Melinda Gebbie. The interview was being conducted by comedian Stewart Lee. I was particularly keen to go as I had ordered tickets for Moore's previous interview with Lee two years ago only for the tickets to arrive two days after the interview took place.

This time I was picking my ticket up on the door. Although given my previous experience and the James Herbert cancellation I was a tad apprehensive. Fortunately the ticket was there this time.

The interview was a witty, intelligent affair followed by perceptive questions from the audience. Even better there was a signing. The queue stretched halfway across London but I decided to persevere. I might never have this chance again. Melinda signed a Cobweb strip for me and I asked Mr Moore to sign a Swamp Thing graphic novel. I then sheepishly mentioned my British Fantasy Award and gave him a copy of Mask.

I headed home, reading and rereading the autographs on my comics. It wasn't until got into bed that I realised that not once in the entire journey home had my feet touched the ground.


Chris said...

You haven't read James Herbert? ::rolls eyes::

Mark said...

Nice on, Stu, have you heard anything from Alan Moore yet?

Stuart Young said...

Mark, I'll be amazed if I hear anything from Alan Moore. Especially as I didn't give him my contact details :-)

emi said...


Orbital Comics
148 Charing Cross Road
London WC2H 0LB
0207 2407672
Contact: Karl

To celebrate the official UK release of The Mindscape of Alan Moore feature documentary, legendary creator Alan Moore and writer-director DeZ Vylenz will be signing at Orbital Comics.

Orbital Comics in central London has a wide range of mostly American comics dating back to the 1940s. It specializes in back issues, but has all the recent comics, graphic novels and related merchandise available. Orbital Comics opened in 2001 and is now the second largest comic store in Central London.

Alan Moore and DeZ Vylenz will be signing the DVD, “The Mindscape of Alan Moore. The DVD is available now to buy from Orbital Comics.

This will be a ticketed event, on a first come first served basis. Due to time constraints there will only be a limited number of tickets available on the day so please come early to avoid disappointment. Doors open at 10.30am


Alan Moore - writer, artist and performer - is the world's most critically acclaimed and widely admired creator of comic books and graphic novels.

In The Mindscape Of Alan Moore we see a portrait of the artist as contemporary shaman, someone with the power to transform consciousness by means of manipulating language, symbols and images.

The film leads the audience through Moore's world with the writer himself as guide, beginning with his childhood background, following the evolution of his career as he transformed the comics medium, through to his immersion in a magical worldview where science, spirituality and society are part of the same universe.

The Mindscape Of Alan Moore is an audiovisual document of utmost relevance in the wake of current global developments.

Regular updates, information about the signing are all online at

ALAN MOORE & DeZ VYLENZ SIGNING kicks off at Orbital Comics, 2-3pm on May 24th. Orbital Comics - 148 Charing Cross Road, London WC2H 0LB. Call 0207 2407672 for more information.