Friday, January 31, 2014

MORE on the NEW print & item #32: FREE TO GOOD HOME: a writer's mantra

item #32:

One part of my job that I love doing for Mr. Neil Gaiman is to take care of fan requests.

A growing subsection of this is requests for quotes written out by Boss that people get permanently inked upon themselves.

An popular quote for Neil to write out, is the funny but true statement: “Writers are liars”- and in this case, he wrote it three, count ‘em, three times—to make sure the person etching this on their skin had options.

He is kind.

This little card will go free to good home anywhere in the world, sent at my cost, a writing mantra that you can post above your trusty Underwood, if you tell me this:

What have you, as writers, found to be the most effective trick used to shut out distraction while writing?

Please use the comments section of this blog (or either of the others) & I'll pick in a day or two where it goes.

Speaking of tattoos, last year, Neil and David Mack teamed up to do a beautiful little 8” x 10” print of a poem that @Burtzor got tattooed on his back.

We have sold out completely of the red sash silkscreens, I have only 7 remaining blue variants, click here for those.

but the red sash version is gone gone gone. GONERS, I say! The delicate silkscreen work by my friend Brian Rise out of Rise Ink in Austin was so gorgeous, I cried real tears of joy when they arrived.

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David and I were chatting recently and he said, well if those are gone, why don’t we release the version that Burton actually got tattooed—so here they are, I announced them this morning:

A bigger version, clocking in at 11” x 17”, printed right down the street in West Hollywood—

again, we will split the run, David getting the evens and me holding the odds.

Hand-numbered, limited edition full color run of 500 this time, all stamped with the @Neverwear seal.

ONLY $25.00 for the next few days, until Feb 4, 2014 at midnight PST, then they go up to $38.00

A Valentine etched on the skin by Neil and David, a little reward for those early supporters.


PS. don't forget, this key will be hidden somewhere near the best dive bar I can find around my hotel...more clues tomorrow.

NEW PRINT: NEIL GAIMAN/DAVID MACK "I will write in words of fire..."

Whie we call this NEW version of the I WILL WRITE WITH WORDS OF's not.

This is the actual version that Burton had tattooed on his back, the color scheme that David chose & illustrated for him. A skin friendly script written by Neil Gaiman.

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They are a hand-numbered, limited edition of 500. a dreamy hand pulled print run in 11" x 17" full color, the design really pops at this size. David has even numbers, we have odd. A Libra split! A Valentine's arrow in to the heart.

Printed right here in Hollywood, California. These are offered unsigned and will be $25.00 until Feb 4 midnight PST, when they will go up to $38.00. CLICK HERE TO ORDER YOURS.

By the way, to track down these travelling men, it's a full-time job-- that's why they are unsigned at this time.

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here are some past photos of the original version, long since gone. THIS VERSION WILL ALSO GO QUICKLY!

Neil reads the tattoo poem.


in 2012, Neil and his lovely daughter Holly started a program to benefit those championing the written word. The foundation supports freedom of speech, and literary education, generally doing good where it can. The CBLDF is one place they are directing their funds, we are all working together.

here is the entire text of the beautiful poem Neil composed:

I will write in words of fire.

I will write them on your skin.

I will write about desire.

Write beginnings, write of sin.

You're the book I love the best,

your skin only holds my truth,

you will be a palimpsest

lines of age rewriting youth.

You will not burn upon the pyre.

Or be buried on the shelf.

You're my letter to desire:

And you'll never read yourself

I will trace each word and comma

As the final dusk descends,

You're my tale of dreams and drama,

Let us find out how it ends.

-Neil Gaiman

Thursday, January 30, 2014

item 29 & 30: BATMAN & KEY

I write this on the plane to JFK, where I am going to work a quick 2 shows with The Black Keys— originally thought Neil was going to be in NYC at this time, so I was trying to meet up with him, but instead, it’s me flying solo.

Looking forward to embracing the cold heart of winter. I am staying an extra day in Manhattan to do some buying for Neverwear, just like the good ol’ days of 9th Life…

A little behind on the diamonds, so here is a two pack.

item #29:

Holy 8 gig Japanese jumpdrive, Batman!

I bought this at Tokyo Hands, an overwhelming 8 story department sstroe in Shibuya district. I had to- HAD to- have it. What I have found most in my clearing-out process, these are things I should be letting loose into the world—be like the Buddha—let it go!

To add to the *value of this, I have put several files of art from the first issue of Sandman: Overture in to the little guy, *secret value!

this auction starts at 99 cents, and profits from this will go to benefit SPCA of LA. Protecting our cats and dogs since, not sure when, but they really seem to care.

click here for the ebay link.

item #30:

I will be hiding this key somewhere in NYC- a Very Heavy ornate painted iron skeleton key, fit for some unknown ghostly door. This key has been in my house for over a decade, I honestly do not recall where it came from. I love keys, and all they represent.

Clues to be revealed tomorrow—

tomorrow morning will also bring the announcement of a NEW DAVID MACK print.

stay tuned...

Sunday, January 26, 2014

item #26: NEIL GAIMAN doodle day submission

Still sick in the treehouse, but on the mend.

For the last several years, Neil Gaiman has donated a doodle or two to Gillian Anderson (aka X-Files' Scully) charity auction for the Neurofibromatosis Network.

I have blogged about it every year, and I have also participated. It's so much fun!

I had Neil doodle inside one of our tour book itineraries from last summer's grueling OCEAN AT THE END OF THE LANE tour.

He also signed the cover.

For my donation, I made one of my "glass candy bar" magnets from Sandman, issue #73, out in Dec. 1995. Death as drawn by the mighty Michael Zulli. When Neil was just here last week I asked him to sign it for me, to up the value. It's a beauty!

So these two items will be going up for auction in May of this year, I will keep you posted. These count as Swallowing Diamonds items, because they are leaving the house!

I will be bidding on Barbara Eden's i-dream-of-Jeannie bottle sketch. I want that one!

there are things from Stan Lee, Malcolm McDowell, The Walking Dead cast, and of course, that dreamy David Duchovny ("why don't you love me, David Duchovny..")

here is a video of Neil, Benedict Cumberbatch and Gillian at Letters Live doing some auctioning- Nick Cave was also there that night, WHY was i not??

Alert!! TWO HOURS LEFT ON THE AMERICAN GODS NEIL HOUSE ON THE ROCK PACK. click here to see about winning.

winner of item #24: miss Helen Hedberg, for her tiger-themed music suggestion. Nicely done!

Saturday, January 25, 2014

LATE! four items for my Swallowing Diamonds project, 22-25.

Neil was in town this week, so great to see that bearded wonder. However, I was derailed by work and sick so am behind on the one-thing-a-day out of the treehouse project i have engaged with myself to do aka SWALLOWING DIAMONDS.

here is Neil reading his beautiful collection of COMIX BOOK from Mr. Denis Kitchen of Kitchen Sink Books, back in action under the Dark Horse roof.

item #22:

the item #21: the glass kitty cat must not have been found by a swallowing diamonds reader, because no one sent in a photo, so I am giving the GOLDFISH POOL print by David Mack to faithful twitterer @Mattncoley who has been my cheerleader for awhile. He (they) have encouraged me in the project and spread the word. i call it karma- enjoy, Matt n' Nicole w/my thanks!


another one of the Neil Gaiman quote mugs is back on ebay: CLICK here, it's got ONE MORE DAY.

comes with 4 Chinese New Year chocolate dragon coins...go and bid, right now, it's only a measly 5 bucks.


FREE! this lovely musical tribute to Neil: with tracks by Ego Likeness, Tori Amos and that hotty Voltaire. just put in the comments, some new (or old) music you are listening to, that i might like.

I really need some new music.

#25: a two part GODSMACK tour swag package over on EBAY, click here.

My first tour was the mighty Boston-based Godsmack on a bill with the Deftones back in 2001.

We were out on 9/11 and that brought about the end of our tour.

Am putting up for auction a two-pack of embroidered goodness: 1. a tour swag shoulder bag with about a zillion pockets, never used.

2. a Dickies-brand work jacket with two pockets and two lovely embroidered logos, this one was from the 2006 tour Godsmack/Rob Zombie. it is a size small, and I wore it proudly.

Sully! What a sweetheart. I believe in a voice like that. One of my favorite tours, and in fact, the tour I met my beloved roadie husband and dear friend Red.

i'll throw in an old pass and setlist if i can find...

this auction is only available in the States, because it's going be a heavy send. starts at 99 cents, as all my auctions will.

(sorry the photos look so crappy, i need to learn to photograph clothing items)

as always, thanks for playing.

Tuesday, January 21, 2014

item #21: TREASURE HUNT IN LA! (plus David Mack!)

Item #21 is a two parter.

hidden (in plain sight) in the courtyard of the CoffeeBean in the 90027 zip, is this glass kitty cat.

Free to any human that finds it.

note: actual cats NOT included.

this cat with a goldfish in his/her belly is very heavy & quite beautiful. The treehouse is just no longer the right home for him/her, so go and find!

if someone reading this DOES finds it, and sends me a photo of it, I will send this person a free signed-by-David-Mack limited edition print of Neil's brilliant coming-to-Hollywood story GOLDFISH POOL.

If you haven't read it, it is in the SMOKE & MIRRORS collection of short stories, and one of my favorite Neil Gaiman tales, ever.

here is a photo of David signing the prints for me.

here is David at ComicCon this last summer, what a cool cat he is.

to find out more about this limited edition print, CLICK HERE. We've got them signed by Neil as well.

having fun with the Swallowing Diamonds project, stay tuned for more action. Going to NYC next week and will be hiding things there too-- **Tomorrow will be some Boston-based tour swag.

Monday, January 20, 2014

item #20: HOUSE ON THE ROCK mementos

2010 was such a year of magic.

first, i toured with Lady Gaga & made some lifelong friends.

while on that tour, i planned our wedding.

Me n' my still-dream guy got married on the water in Baltimore (Charm City, hon!) while he was touring with Roger Waters' THE WALL.

our honeymoon was a trip to New York to see one of my favorite albums of all time come alive on stage, as Drew had to return to his tour.

then we went to HOUSE ON THE ROCK in Wisconsin for the 10th anniversary of Neil Gaiman's AMERICAN GODS. Costumes, everywhere! and the venue was everything I could have imagined and more.

then Neil turned 50 and we threw a giant SUPERFUN party for the boss. down in New Orleans, we even stayed in a haunted hotel.

then Neil got fake-married on the street to AFP (she was a gorg statue!) here is my video on you tube:

here are a few mementos from that time at HOTR:

* bookmark commemorating the event

* signed by Neil HOTR notepad

* pen from HOTR that Neil used to sign the HOTR notepad

*AMERICAN GODS sticker by actual Viking: Jouni Koponen

*Neverwear lucky writing pen


the proceeds from this auction will go to benefit our tiger friends at VALLEY OF THE KINGS, in Wisconsin.

I am going to phase out posting these anywhere but the Swalllowing Diamonds journal in a couple days- time for a new Neil mailbox and more things on the other spots. thanks for following-

and ps: the winner for yesterday's Japanese contest was "stephanie" from the comments over there-

Sunday, January 19, 2014

item #19: FREE! all the way from Japan....

Last year, my forever dream of visiting Japan came true. I shall always love the Slipknot camp for taking me there.

definitely some cool cats on that team, and it's great music to clean your house to.

I fell in love with the terrific attention to detail and the turn of phrase that the translation from Japanese to English often brought. I studied Mandarin in college but that sure didn't help me here...

Everything looked bright and new to me. I brought back so many little presents.

The food was, bar none, my favorite of the world, even down to the crazy convenience store eggs, cooked EXACTLY like I like them, I can't wait to go back.

is my visa still good?

to the person who tells me their favorite food of the world, in the comments, I will send this little Japanese note pad, which includes this quote of perfection:

How many do you know the beautiful language which conveys a feeling?

and I'll throw in a free Neverwear pen:

tomorrow: item #20 will be from HOUSE ON THE ROCK, for all my fellow American Gods fans....stay tuned!

Saturday, January 18, 2014

item #18: FREE sparkly bits (a love letter to NYC)

I used to have a little shop in Baltimore, right down by the water in Fells Point. It was called 9th Life and it's how I put myself through college without student loans.

Many of my friends were artists, I would sell their pieces there- I scoured thrift shops back when you could really find treasures.

Homicide:Life on the Street was filmed right across the street and there was many a joke centered on "Homicide: Life without parking" because production could take up everything. Many of my friends worked in the union in Baltimore on the different shows and films being shot in and around Charm City and once they were going to film in my shop, but it was deemed "really too small"-- and it was. Here's me on my birthday one year:

anyway, I used to go up to NYC every month on buying trips, and would hit the wholesale markets, looking for sparkly fun treasure on the cheap. Yesterday I opened a box of things from the store. My item 18 is a little pack of New York City street sparkles:

a pair of wooden and rhinestone hairsticks, a sheet of eye-glitters. and since Husband is off in Sacramento lighting a Jesus convention, in his honor, i added this 3D Jesus & Mary keychain to the pile. (if you've ever seen Husband, they may think he IS Jesus)

*a batch of barrettes on cards that I would print up with whatever words were on my mind at the time.

just leave in the comments, what you believe I should see/do/buy while in NYC next trip (end of Jan)- i will pick a winner in the morning.

Will ship off to anywhere on this big planet! ps. Thanks to @spacedlaw for donating the dollar amount of her auction win of the Neil mug to save the kitties at @AvaloCats.

pps. If you see me on social media ANYTIME after this, tell me to GO FINISH MY SCRIPT. today is writing day. *scrams.

Friday, January 17, 2014

a little Tori Amos love here...

WOW, it's been a busy couple of days, good busy, but busy.

playing catch up here with two items (which will be one auction).

ah, miss Tori Amos, how you have set the course of my life on a royal-flush mission. It was on her tour, that I got to meet mister Neil Gaiman, back in 2003.

I was lucky enough to tour with Tori on three different runs.

Every night, different magic.

The first tshirt is from a tour i was not actually on, but I did go see the show in Boston at the beautiful Wang Theatre, Rufus Wainwright opened, oh man. It is a 100% cotton size large, with the tour dates on the back.

I started touring with T in 2002, did the Scarlet's Walk tour and the 2003 Lottapianos with Ben Folds and then The Beekeeper tour in 2005-- such a terrific crew on that tour. I even got one of my stories published in the epic Tori tribute book: COMIC BOOK TATTOO edited by Rantz Hoseley, you can read my account of it HERE.

The second tshirt (size XL 100% cotton) is one that we handed out to the local crews every night after they finished loading us back in the trucks for the haul to the next city on the tour. I part with this one a bit sadly, these were never available for sale, only given out... but that is what this is all about, right? Making room for more magic in my life.


This auction is only offered in the USA, sorry overseas friends, I just can't send a replacement if it goes missing. Thanks for being part of my Swallowing Diamonds project.

*ps, IF i can find it, I think I have a set list around here somewhere, I will throw that in. happy bidding, ask me any question and I'll do my best on the answer.

pps. THANK YOU to my two-hats-to-Rickert & Beagle-customers winners: Ann and Bryan! hats are on the way. tomorrow's item will be a freebie as well...stay tuned!

Monday, January 13, 2014

item #14: BATMAN!

Oh Batty, how we love ye.

This is a vintage style tee with mister Bruce Wayne, heading out on a crime-fighting mission. It is a smallish tee, even though it's marked medium on the shirt, it looks to be unisex but it's fitted for certain, and in a Prince-approved purple hue. This is a Junk Food brand tee, they are so fine.

Also with this shirt, I throw in one of my glass comic book magnets, where Batman is looking for...someone.

I started making these tiny art pieces when I lost a bunch of comics in a flood and couldn't throw them all away. I dried them out and saved a few of my favorite panels. Now people are sending me their damaged comics, i love giving the panels new life.

I am making Escape Pod Comics a batch of these magnets to sell. They are also selling at the lovely Rickert and Beagle Books in Pittsburgh. woOOOooooOOOoo!


and tomorrow will be a giveaway thing, hmmmm... let's just say, Pittsburgh people, keep your ears on. I'm going to try something different...

Sorry to say that I am not shipping overseas on this auction, as i can't replace the item if it goes missing in the post. Let me know if there are any questions. enjoy! Cat

Saturday, January 11, 2014

item #12: ZOMBIE!

happy Saturday, today is going to be busy busy busy, so i thought I would knock two out of the park. I am giving away some tour memories. An all black 100% cotton (bootleg) Zombie/Megadeth tee in size XXL.

This tour was the absolute most fun! Lacuna Coil was our opener and i would make sure to be out in front for the Mustaine/Cristina duet on Le Tous Le Monde, EVERY NIGHT. chills...

( (if you don't know this song, click here to hear/watch it.)

I think i like the spooky back better than the front... Throwing in a tour sticky pass, which allows no access to anything. That thing is long over!

All you have to do to enter to win is tell me your favorite live show ever seen. Please put in the comments, it's the only way I can keep track of anything at present.

You can link to a blog about your favorite show, that's fine, be creative, it can go on any of the three blogs Furrytiger, Neverwear or Swallowing Diamonds. Soon, I'll be streamlining, but it's still a new little baby project. Needs training wheels...

Second thing already has a home, in fact.

I got an email from a hopeful Neverwear customer who said that the site still had an option to send to Yugoslavia, but no option for the recently independant Montenegro. I love political change! So as we update the site, our fine WebGoblin DanGuy is working on this. (@Danguyf on twitter) I told our Montenegran friend that I would send him his tshirt free if he would make a charitable donation to an animal shelter somewhere-- yeah!

so-- winners of #8 and #9 items, the two signed-by-Neil Gaiman OCEAN cards:

"I lived in books more than I lived anywhere else."
from Raquel Moritz

"Words save our lives, sometimes."
from Donna Blitzen

PLUS! Third runner up: (prize to be determined)

“All monsters are scared. That's why they're monsters.”
from Vampi

LAST THING: **the Linkin Park hat was won by Adrienne Hill, but I need an address to ship to.

(winners, please email me:

Happy January to you all.

Friday, January 10, 2014

item #11: so many beads/charms...for the tigers.

So, it seems the bead lots are making people happy, I got SO much email about them. Offers to buy all my beads outright, etc.

but...Nah, not yet, this way is more fun for me, i get to go down memory lane with these bead buddies.

PROCEEDS FROM THIS AUCTION WILL BENEFIT VALLEY OF THE KINGS where the mighty Obie and Socrates live! A big cat sanctuary in Wisconsin. (*many other exotic animals live there too)

here we are, marveling at the beauty that is the tiger. The VOTK always needs funds to keep up with the food supply, especially in wintertime...

so, back to the beads:I put myself through college by making jewelry, thank goodness as now, I have no student loans!

The upshot is that I have LOADS of beads to get rid of, as I just don't have time to make the jewels so much these days.

From my travels, I have picked up charms and beads at flea markets, vintage shops, thrift shops, yard sales, bead shops, the world wide.

Some pieces I can't recall where I got, but I have made a little list to describe as best as I can.

as always, the auction starts at 99 cents.


here's what's in this auction:

4 x stretchy bead string for jewelry making (great for bracelet making)

1 x bag of assorted accent ball beads

1 x faux-diamond K pendant (do not know where this came from)

1 x sterling and pearl earring (I had planned on making necklace)

1 x labrodorite bead/ sterling thunderbird spirit earring (marked 925)

1 x lapis lazuli pendant set in sterling (925 stamp on back)

1 x brass world expo pendant w/Austrian crystal accents

1 x glass glob pendant

2 x heart lock w/key charms (silvertone)

2 x Celtic cross charms (brass?)

1 x heart pierced with sword Milagro charm (one of my favorite pieces)

6 x rose quartz beads (the love stone!)

1 x circle pendant in sterling stamped 925 (Balinese, I believe)

1 x faceted glass? ball bead (may be citrine, I got this from broken antique necklace)

2 x rhinestone charms w/light green stones & moonstone-esque pieces

1 x pair of vintage rhinestone & milk glass beads? (no earring backs w/ these, sorry)

1 x very interesting agate pendant set in sterling (925 stamp)

1 x pair earrings w/Kali heads, green glass beads, not sure of material, no markings.

4 x kitty cat charms (silvertone)

4 x filigree charms (2 gold tone/2 silver tone)

2 x wishbone charms

1 x fairy charm

1 x teeny tiny little star charm

7 x assorted crescent moon charms

Sorry overseas friends, I am only shipping in the United States, because I can't replace these if something happens in the post.

any questions, lay 'em on me.

I will work anything out with anyone, I am one of the ebay good guys! Meanwhile, I am getting a little behind in the winners, WORKING ON IT, i swear. ALL feedback appreciated and accepted. Comments section is open.