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The Engineer

The Life and Times of Donald F. Simmons

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Neal Stephenson

Neal Stephenson, author of Snow Crash and Cryptonomicon was in town last week at the Music Hall on the Danforth, promoting his new boo Quicksilver. I love his work (with a few reservations) so I went, despite the $5 admission charge, along with my brother and several others I know. The format was that he'd be interviewed by Mark Askwith of Space, do a reading, and answer questions.

I'd heard that he wasn't great with crowds, and unfortunately the rumors were true. The interview session was... ok, although he spent way too much time just talking about his website. The reading was ... ok. He tended to speak in a monotone and read all sentences exactly the same. The Q&A was better, we got some decent stories out of him that way.

I'd lugged my hardcover of Cryptonomicon along in case he did autographs. What they did was hand out tickets to everyone who bought the new book at the event, and six lucky people would get a refund, and their book signed. I wasn't one of hte lucky ones. I did buy the book, though, so I had to lug two gigantic hardcovers home that night. Can't say I'd go out of my way to see him again. I'll keep reading his books however.