Monday, 6 October 2014

Publication in America!

In a few hours, The Secrets of Life and Death comes out in America. This feels like an astonishing gift, a real surprise. I was so much more connected to the UK release, it seemed there was so much to do, so much to think about. It wasn't that long since I had been making changes, responding to edits, thinking about publicity and marketing, it wasn't that long since I had signed the deal, in fact! But a year later I haven't had to do anything but let the team at Broadway package and look after the book, which they have done beautifully. I have marvelled at the different covers a few times - one of my sons is at university with a number of US students - who universally approved the US cover. The English students preferred the UK cover (I wanted him to canvas the university's student body to see if there was a Finnish student lurking there somewhere). The publishers really do know their business! I hope it sells, as much for Broadway Books as for me, I'm still carrying a copy of the paperback around with me to make it seem real. There's a little article written by me about Elizabeth Bathory ahead of the launch.

Two days later, The Secrets of Blood and Bone comes out here. I felt more confident to take Edward Kelley to Venice, and explore a whole new culture. Writing the past is like writing science fiction in some ways, we can't put ourselves back so far, everything was so different, the smells, the textures of linens and the connection to temperature were so different. There were no waterproof, lightweight fabrics, no softness against your skin, no elastic. Things got damp, clothes were rarely washed and so you carried a history of your recent life in your clothes alone. In the contemporary strand I had fun putting my characters in a similarly medieval environment of an old house that isn't welcoming, just like the one I had once lived in. 

Some years ago I fled to the Isle of Wight, still battered by the recent death of my daughter and husband, and viewed a number of houses in my price range. The one we bought was hemmed in by a spectacular block of ten foot high brambles the estate agent called 'the garden'. He took me upstairs to see it, pointing out the trees in each corner that bounded it. Downstairs it was like being underwater, the leaves were plastered onto the windows, as if it was trying to get in... 

6 comments:

  1. Really exciting, both the US launch and your new book. Well done!

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    1. Thank you, CDW! It seems really exciting to me, because the book did it all by itself. I'm a proud author, it's like one of your kids did something!

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  2. Wonderful news, Rebecca, and I do love the American cover! Congratulations on the publication of The Secret of Blood and Bone too. I'll be sure to order it into the library where I work, so it can reach even more readers :o)

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    1. Thank you, Karen, I hope people like it out there in America! And thank you for the library copy, I hope people like it there, too!

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  3. Great news, Rebecca. Yer so international! :)

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    1. Thank you, Teresa, I don't feel very international, the books got much longer legs than I have! Hope the writing is coming on well...

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