13 Neil Gaiman Quotes To Help Tackle Your Day

by Charlotte Ahlin

Some days, you wake up ready to slay dragons. Other days you wake up ready to go back to sleep, preferably in a forest somewhere, so moss can grow over you and no one can ever find you or ask you to do things ever again. Either way, here are some Neil Gaiman quotes that will inspire you to tackle your day.

Neil Gaiman is one of those writers who excels at weaving together strands of fable and myth to create something entirely new. In his stories, fallen stars become irritated young women and Death has pet goldfish. Out-of-work gods walk among us, living children are raised by ghosts, and Other Mothers lurk on the other side of the wall. It is impossible to read any of his books without feeling some heady combination of inspiration, nausea, and terror. And he gives some pretty excellent writing advice.

If you have the time, you must sit down and read (or re-read) The Sandman , American Gods, or another of Neil Gaiman's books. This is the only guaranteed way to be inspired by Neil Gaiman's writing. If you, however, do not have the time right now, because of "work" or "school" or some other flimsy excuse, then here are some quotes to carry with you as you set out to conquer your day:

1. Fairy tales are more than true: not because they tell us that dragons exist, but because they tell us that dragons can be beaten.

― Neil Gaiman, Coraline

2. Everybody has a secret world inside of them. I mean everybody. All of the people in the whole world, I mean everybody — no matter how dull and boring they are on the outside. Inside them they've all got unimaginable, magnificent, wonderful, stupid, amazing worlds... Not just one world. Hundreds of them. Thousands, maybe.

― Neil Gaiman, The Sandman, Vol. 5: A Game of You

3. Sometimes you wake up. Sometimes the fall kills you. And sometimes, when you fall, you fly.

― Neil Gaiman, The Sandman, Vol. 6: Fables and Reflections

4. When I was a child, adults would tell me not to make things up, warning me of what would happen if I did. As far as I can tell so far, it seems to involve lots of foreign travel and not having to get up too early in the morning.

― Neil Gaiman, Smoke and Mirrors

5. The one thing you have that nobody else has is you. Your voice, your mind, your story, your vision. So write and draw and build and play and dance and live as only you can. The moment that you feel that just possibly you are walking down the street naked…that’s the moment you may be starting to get it right.

― Neil Gaiman, Make Good Art

6. It may help to understand human affairs to be clear that most of the great triumphs and tragedies of history are caused, not by people being fundamentally good or fundamentally bad, but by people being fundamentally people.

― Neil Gaiman, Good Omens: The Nice and Accurate Prophecies of Agnes Nutter, Witch

7. He had noticed that events were cowards: they didn't occur singly, but instead they would run in packs and leap out at him all at once.

― Neil Gaiman, Neverwhere

8. Go and make interesting mistakes, make amazing mistakes, make glorious and fantastic mistakes. Break rules. Leave the world more interesting for your being here.

― Neil Gaiman, Make Good Art

9. Tomorrow may be hell, but today was a good writing day, and on the good writing days nothing else matters.

― Neil Gaiman, "Somewhat less sinister ducks" blog entry

10. The world always seems brighter when you've just made something that wasn't there before.

― Neil Gaiman, "Gunpowder treason and plot" blog entry

11. If you dare nothing, then when the day is over, nothing is all you will have gained.

― Neil Gaiman, The Graveyard Book

12. Remember: that giants sleep too soundly; that witches are often betrayed by their appetites; dragons have one soft spot, somewhere, always; hearts can be well-hidden, and you can betray them with your tongue.

― Neil Gaiman, Instructions, Fragile Things: Short Fictions and Wonders

13. Life is sometimes hard. Things go wrong, in life and in love and in business and in friendship and in health and in all other ways that life can go wrong. And when things get tough, this is what you should do. Make good art.

― Neil Gaiman, Make Good Art

Images: Giphy (14)