Fanboy, Now Translated

I have a friend who tells me that I become giddy like a little kid when new things happen to me. This isn’t always meant as a compliment, mind you. Sometimes it is delivered in the tone of, “For God’s sake, man — you’re an adult. Act like one!” as I giggle over a cool cover or a new book being finished.

But I can’t help it. I honestly can’t. Just about everything about the writing life hits one or more of my pleasure points, so it doesn’t take much to reduce me to childlike wonderment.

Case in point:


Catalan and Spanish editions of Fanboy



Those are the Catalan and Spanish editions of my first novel, copies of which arrived over the weekend. I spent an inordinate amount of time playing with them like new toys on Christmas morning. You have to understand: Unlike some other authors, my work has not been translated before, nor has it been published in many other countries beyond the one of my birth. (My writing, I am told by foreign agents, is “too American.” OK.) So this was and is a real treat for me — my own book, in two foreign languages, utterly unreadable by me.

(Well, I can muddle through parts of the Spanish edition, but mostly that’s ’cause I know what it’s supposed to say already.)

What do I love about these editions? Well, first of all, it’s cool to see that the cover has remained basically the same. Jon Gray really knocked it out of the park when he designed this cover because it’s been used (with some variation) for the American hardcover and paperback, the audio book, the Austraiian edition, and now the Spanish and Catalan editions. That can’t be said for any of my other books.

I love that the covers are shiny. Sue me — I’m a mynah. The blue cover is shiny for the American paperback, but this is the first time seeing the red one shiny. Remember: I’m a child.

Most of all, though, I love that there are footnotes in the text to explain to my Spanish and Catalonian readers some of the U.S. pop culture references, including one to explain the meaning of “manos de Kirby” (“Kirby hands”). I’m sorry — I love that. I just do.

Oh, and I love knowing that the names “Fanboy” and “Goth Girl” translate to…

Well, “Fanboy” and “Goth Girl.”

Now I will sit back and look forward to the day when I get e-mails in Spanish asking, “¿Cuál es la tercera cosa?”

Leave a Comment