We weren’t in NYC at the time, so thanks to Eloise Flood (dear friend and editor to us both) for picking it up, and to fellow nominee Maureen Johnson for being the first to text us.
Amusing Story 1: The actual Norton Award object was somehow melted in transit. They had to give Eloise an old Grandmaster Award as a stand-in.
Amusing Story 2: Holly Black won the first one last year for Valiant, which we’d bet her she would. So she had to take us out for a hugely expensive meal. Absurdly expensive, it turned out. But now we owe her one. (drat)
Speaking of good food, the reason I haven’t been posting is that we’ve been here:
Amusing Story 3: I was trying to get my cool new camera (b’day pressie from Justine) on the right setting to shoot the Eiffel Tower. And it turned out that the setting for Big Buildings was indicated by an icon of the Eiffel Tower!
Ah, Paris. What an iconic city.
We were there to do press for Uglies, which came out last week in French. My adult sf is much more popular in France than the US, so I had tons of big papers inteviewing me: L’Express, Le Monde, Figaro, and a bunch of teen weeklies and monthlies.
Apparently, I am the Jerry Lewis of sf.
French interviewers are different from their English-language counterparts. More . . . philosophical. My favorite example:
What utopia would you fight for?
Gotta love the French. I said something like, “A chaotic utopia, with a thousand voices in tumult.” Because that’s what happens when I’m jetlagged and philosophical in France.
Especially enjoyable was being translated for six of the eleven interviews. It worked like this: The interviewer would ask something in French, Christian (my translator) would repeat it to me in English. Then I would waffle for a while, and Christian would translate my waffling back to the interviewer in French.
How Christian did this without head explodage is beyond me. A lot of my answers (and some of the questions) were a couple of minutes long. I can’t even repeat something of that length back in the same language, much less another one.
But it was way cool listening to my answers in French, trying to catch recognizable words flashing by. Christian and I got to know each other in a really interesting way. (That is, he saw me answer the same questions six different ways in some cases. This is something only Justine normally gets to do.)
I have a lengthy video of the process, which I’ll try to cut into uploadable form soon.
All in all, Paris was awesome. Great food, perfect weather, bars named after me, and everyone was supremely wonderful to us. A jolly birthday. (I’m 44! Ancient!)
Thanks to Christian, all the journalistes, and my Pocket publicist Christine.
More photos, etc., to come.
P.S. You can buy the Norton Award-winning Magic or Madness in fine bookshops everywhere or here.