I always struggle with titles. The one I like the best - THE SLEEPING AND THE DEAD - came right at the last moment when I discovered the title I'd originally chosen had recently been used by someone else. THE SLEEPING AND THE DEAD is a quote from the dagger scene in Macbeth and works well because part of the action takes place around a school production of the play.
My most recent book - a new Vera Stanhope novel set in Northumberland - is still without a title. This is starting to get a bit desperate because we want to put the first two chapters at the back of the paperback edition of RAVEN BLACK and that comes out in September. The chapters are edited and proofed, but we can't come up with a title which really suits the book.
The plot involves a murderer who places his victims in water, then scatters them with flowers. Like Ophelia, I thought and went back to my complete works of Shakespeare. But there was nothing to suit.
I've resorted to offering a bottle of champagne to any of my colleagues at Huddersfield Library who find a useable title. And if you have any suggestions I'd be grateful to hear from you...
We had a great evening with three European crime writers and two translators in the magnificent Lit and Phil on Thursday night. It was the final gig in the Bloody Foreigners tour. The Lit and Phil Library is in Newcastle, not very far from the station and if you get a chance to visit you should, even if just to see the ladies room.
The evening was sold out. It was fascinating to get some insight into the proccupations of the authors and to see how much effort the translators put into getting the voice of the writer. And how easily it can go horribly wrong. Gianrico Carofiglio is a criminal prosecutor and confident and accomplished speaker, even in English. Dominique Manotti and Matti Joensuu understood and spoke a little Englsih but had their translators with them and that added to the texture of the evening.
Thanks to Kay from the Lit and Phil for hosting the night and to everyone who came along to support the tour.
The Kirklees InterCrime project is now officially at an end. We celebrated its completion with 3 events, one in Huddersfield, one in Cleckheaton and one in Holmfirth. The Holmfirth evening featured Italian writers - Gianrico again, Lucarelli and Camilleri. A local Amateur Dramatic Society provided actors to read from the books, there was antipasti, wine and pizza. A brilliant night.
The books will now circulate, with our promotional material round the other Kirklees branch libraries.