Saturday, 21 December 2013

Dust Covers

I have mislaid my copy of Dave McKean's Dust Covers, the annotated Sandman covers with a new comic strip by Gaiman and McKean. I have come to accept that not being able to find a book when I want to refer to it is a regular part of the deal with books and has to be accepted as such. Longer term, if it never turns up, I can buy another copy.

(Over a very long period, I visited friends regularly, left all my Sandmans to reread, and for them to read, at their place and wound up buying new copies to have at home - but they had been reread so often that I felt that the author deserved a second set of royalties.)

We make literary references by citing author, title, place and year of publication and page number as if every published text was eternally present in a universally accessible Platonic realm whereas, in reality, the ability to make or check the reference is entirely dependent on access to a physical copy of the book.

From memory, then, I think that the comic strip in Dust Covers covers:

the author seeing the Sandman - in reality the Moon and a tree with an outstretched branch - pouring dust onto his daughter's face as she lay in bed;
the Death girl seen by McKean on a plane where a passanger died;
Alan Moore seeing John Constantine in a London sandwich bar;
Death serving in a New York cafe - as opposed to Death serving in a London restaurant;
Choronzon the demon telling Gaiman that he does not understand any of this.

Choronzon is right to the extent that writers and artists do not fully understand the creative process.

(Interrupted by the obligation to deliver Christmas presents to children. To be continued later.)

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