So if you want to pay me to come in and talk, it’s expensive.
The vast majority of the events I do and of the talks, lectures or readings I give are done for free, often as charity fundraisers. (For example: the night before the Stillwater event I spent the day in Chicago, speaking to 1600 people who had paid up to $250 a ticket, as a benefit for the Comic Book Legal Defense Fund. http://www.bleedingcool.com/2010/04/18/neil-gaiman-at-c2e2/ is a description of the event.)
So. I was asked if I’d come and talk at Stillwater, and be paid $40,000. I said, “That’s an awful lot of money for a little library.”
“It’s not from the library. It’s from the Legacy Fund, a Minnesota tax allocation that allows the library to pay market rates to bring authors to suburban libraries who otherwise wouldn’t be able to bring them in. They have to use the money now as it won’t roll over to next year and expires next month.”
I've started reading Gaiman's blog over the past couple of weeks. I need to read more books he's written.