[[quoteright:350:[[BaldOfAwesome http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/nel_4017.png]]]]
[[caption-width-right:350:He'll go [[ItMakesSenseInContext 20th century on your ass]] [[http://www.kickstarter.com/projects/260688528/clang later]].]]
Neal Stephenson is a ''very tall man,'' as well as the author of (in chronological order of publishing):
[[index]]
* ''Literature/TheBigU''
* ''Literature/{{Zodiac}}''
* ''Literature/SnowCrash''
* ''Literature/TheDiamondAge''
* ''Literature/{{Cryptonomicon}}''
* ''Literature/TheBaroqueCycle''
* ''Literature/{{Anathem}}''
* ''Literature/{{Reamde}}''
[[/index]]
* Assorted other novels, short stories, and non-fiction works

He is known for somewhat [[SignatureStyle idiosyncratic pacing]], [[TwoLinesNoWaiting multiple interwoven plots]], doing his research [[ShownTheirWork and sharing it in excruciating detail]], assuming that [[ViewersAreGeniuses his readers are geniuses,]] and a Pynchonesque tendency to [[ThrowItIn throw in]] long, seemingly pointless digressions: a [[Literature/{{Cryptonomicon}} lengthy erotic story]] on antique furniture and stockings, say, or a [[Literature/SnowCrash three-page memo]] regarding the proper use of toilet paper in an office environment. His more recent books also tend to be [[ExpospeakGag practical arguments in favor of electronic books supplanting paper copies]] (read: ''[[DoorStopper long]]''), with ''Cryptonomicon'' coming in at well over 900 pages and ''Anathem'' at nearly the same length before the many [[CallARabbitASmeerp glossaries]] and [[InstructionalDialogue appendices]]. He is widely considered to be rather poor at endings, with many of his novels reaching a climax and then more or less ending immediately afterwards with little to no denouement.

A recurring theme in Stephenson's work involves the classification of humanity into a typography of functional castes based on their approach to practical and theoretic knowledge; this is spelled out most explicitly in his novella-length essay ''[[http://artlung.com/smorgasborg/C_R_Y_P_T_O_N_O_M_I_C_O_N.shtml In The Beginning... Was The Command Line]]'', where humanity is divided into [[TheTimeMachine Morlocks]] (those willing to pursue low-level technical knowledge) and [[TheTimeMachine Eloi]] (those unwilling to do so). However, the details vary from book to book; ''Literature/{{Cryptonomicon}}'' expands the concept into a FiveRaces-style typography of Elves, Dwarves, Men, and Hobbits smattered with occasional Wizards and a single specimen of [[LordOfTheRings Gollum]], while ''Literature/{{Anathem}}'' could be considered a near-thousand-page meditation on a similar theme. Not surprisingly, Stephenson's heroes always fall into a technically or theoretically sophisticated caste.

He was making a motion-controlled [[http://www.kickstarter.com/projects/260688528/clang swordfighting videogame]]... but [[http://www.rockpapershotgun.com/2013/09/20/thud-development-of-neal-stephensons-clang-halted/ not anymore]]. [[http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-ZDB4_y8Nbf0/UDkqyIVJfLI/AAAAAAAAn_c/GscZ2uuovRI/s1600/Scan10001.JPG Here's]] a [[AwesomenessIsVolatile screen-breaking]] photo with him, NeilGaiman and NeilArmstrong.
----