|Pencil-Necked Little Weasel|
"Dean also singled out a $45,000 payment of Legacy money that was made last year to science fiction writer Neil Gaiman for a four-hour speaking appearance. Dean said that Gaiman, 'who I hate,' was a 'pencil-necked little weasel who stole $45,000 from the state of Minnesota.'"
Neil Gaiman's witty and civilized response is worth reading. Go, Neil.
Last year, Gaiman was a featured Club Book author, for which he was paid a generous honorarium. He performed admirably, to a full house, and his talk has been broadcast and rebroadcast more times than I can count. You can still stream it on MPR. Bottom line? The Metropolitan Library Services Agency and the Washington County Library System, who booked and paid for Mr. Gaiman, got their money's worth, and then some.
This Saturday, when Mary and I do our Club Book event in Anoka, we will be speaking to fewer than 100 people, and our presentation will NOT be featured on MPR. The Library Foundation will still get its money's worth, but the scale is not the same. Neil Gaiman had the star power to reach far more people than we will, and he was worth every penny he received. Which, incidentally, he did not keep for himself. Not that he didn't deserve it. Also, I like him because he is a mushroom hunter.