April 30, 2009

International Bright Young Things

Okay, first order of business: Presenting the Australian cover for FAKETASTIC (at left), which comes out July 1 (now that I’ve got my months and days in the right order) and can also be viewed on the Random House-Australia website by clicking here.

I’m once again thrilled—not just with the packaging but with the amazing people at my Oz publishing house and all the incredible readers Down Under (do people still say that or am I totally dating myself and forcing flashbacks to Crocodile Dundee or—oh!—does anyone remember The Gods Must Be Crazy…? Wow. Now I’m REALLY dating myself). I actually heard from my aunt in Tasmania, who had these lovely things to say:

“You’ll be pleased to know that even in little old Hobart you’re selling well! I went in a while ago to one of the local bookshops and asked for Frenemies. He knew INSTANTLY where to find it, and said they had sold quite a few! They had it shelved in Childrens – 12 and up. The shops here don’t seem to have a ‘young adult’ but I remember you saying that your chief fans were around 13. Enjoyed reading it. Is that REALLY how 13 year olds are in the US? Sounds like another planet!”

Ha! Of course, I immediately let my aunt know that OF COURSE that’s how 13-year-olds are (kind of)—not just in the U.S. but all over the world. Which brings me to my next bit of international news: I’ve been receiving quite a lot of email from my French-speaking readers. Apparently many students en France are asked to write about authors they like and, well…elles m’adorent (trans: They love me!). I know that sounds obscenely vain…but I swear it’s semi-true. The best part about all this is that I get to try to correspond/answer interview questions in French—and they try to write to me in English (sometimes). Here’s the most recent and most ADORABLE message thus far:

"Bonjour, Je m'appelle XXX, j'ai 15 ans , j'habite en Belgique (à côté de la France). Et j'ai lu votre livre, je l'ai trouvé vraiment très chouette! Dans mon école, on doit faire une biographie d'un auteur de notre choix... Moi je vous ai choisis :D. Es-que je pourrais vous pausez quelque questions, s'il vous plait? Au revoir, XXX"
Hello,I am called XXX, I am 15 years old, I live in Belgium (beside France). And I read your book, I really found it very owl! In my school, one must make a biography of an author of our choice… Me I chose you: D. Could I you pause some questions, please?Goodbye,
P.s: I do not know if the translator functions well.

So yeah...my books have been called a lot of things—but never OWL. And much as I like owls, I was obviously curious to know what this particular reader really meant. So I went to my handy French-English translator tool online, and discovered that in addition to chouette translating as "owl," it can also mean:
  • Kind
  • Old bag
  • Neat looking
  • Peachy-Keen
  • Hunky-Dory
  • Helpful
  • Jim-Dandy
  • Nifty
  • Great
Honestly? I’d take ALL of those—from owl to kind old bag to great (and I do pride myself on being quite helpful, too). After all, when you see the WORST REVIEW EVER I’m going to post on my new blog tomorrow, this is just about as cool as winning a freaking Pulitzer.



Thao said...

How cool. I so love the Australian versions of the books. And the letter from the French reader is cute too, I guess owl here means great?

Bookworm said...

OMG I love those Australian covers even more than the American ones! And what a sweet letter from a fan....I actually did see your book in France! Love that cover, too! (:

Sadako said...

I like the Australian covers a lot, too. Very nice.