Oct 15, 2008

From Camilla: Boucheron, The World Mystery Convention

Camilla writes:

This weekend I was in Baltimore attending Bouchercon, the World Mystery Convention. It’s the biggest of the many conventions, attended by most of the heavy hitters of mystery fiction.

I got a big bear hug from Harlan Coben which felt great, got to hear Margaret Maron, Gillian Roberts, Louise Ure, and Dorothy Cannell, who can make a stone burst out laughing. Laura Lippman was the guest of honor.

The best was discovering a new author-new only for me- John Harvey, who was the international guest of honor. I just finished reading the second book in his new series-Ash and Bone. I’m told he’s not that well known here and I can’t understand why. I avoid noir novels-reading the newspaper is enough bad news for me-but I couldn’t put Ash and Bone down. Gobbled it up in one day. Anyone who wants to learn about writing-genre or literary-should pick him up. His strong spare prose showed me how few words are needed to paint a heart grabbing picture. I will read more of him.

(Photo courtesy of Henry Chang)
Michael Genelin, Grace Bophy, Camilla Trinchieri and Henry Chang

I was on a panel with three other Soho authors titled “I’ll Take You There,” monitored by our publicity director, Sarah Reidy. The reason for the title- the other authors write series that take place in foreign lands or foreign cultures. Cara Black has bodies crop up in Paris, Grace Bophy in Umbria, Michael Genelin in Slovakia and Henry Chang in New York’s Chinatown. Despite the fact that The Price of Silence isn’t part of a series and it takes place in Manhattan, a young Chinese student is a pivotal character, which sort of made me fit in. Clever Sarah announced to the audience that since I was Italian, Manhattan was a foreign land in my eyes. Maybe they bought it.

That night-Friday-Sarah and Ailen Lujo, the marketing director, took us to a fun restaurant—The Bicycle—where we had a great time eating, drinking and getting to know each other. I spent Saturday attending panels, keeping an eye out for old acquaintances. I hadn’t gone to a mystery convention in over ten years. There were a lot of new faces, and for a bit I felt like a fish thrown out of water, but after sighting a few people I knew from the old days when I was writing the Simona Griffo series, I settled in.

(Photo courtesy of Henry Chang)

Mystery conventions are exciting and exhausting, and they are a necessary part of a crime writer’s life. For months, even years on end, we sit in front of a computer with only our characters for company. It feels good to break out and mingle with like-minded people. Some of the famous may not give you the time of day, some are still pushing to be better known, some are hopefuls who are eager to learn from you. All are lovers of writing. That’s the best company there is.

(Photo courtesy of Henry Chang)
In the very front row, from the left, Henry Chang, Cara Black and Camilla Trinchieri.

Italian Translator, Dr. Erika Bianchi

Dr. Erika Bianchi, the Italian translator of The Price of Silence is a professor at the Institute at Palazzo Rucellai. The Institute website has posted this about her:

"Dr. Erika Bianchi has expanded her list of accomplishments by translating The Price of Silence by Camilla Trinchieri into Il prezzo del silenzio.

When the original English edition was published in 2007 it garnered such reviews as “a taut psychological thriller…a gripping, intelligent read…a literary crime novel.”

Dr. Bianchi found the novel engrossing (“it grabs you in the gut and never lets you go”) and the work of translating it satisfying on a personal level (“it was like putting on a dress made just for you.”)

The rendering of American slang into the Italian vernacular presented particular difficulties, the solving of which went beyond literal translation. Prof. Bianchi handled the problem creatively, using contemporary Italian slang to convey the spirit of the original to a non-American audience."

Camilla Trinchieri to Teach Workshops for the Institute at Palazzo Rucellai

When Camilla Trinchieri was in Italy in June 2008 launching the Italian translation of The Price of Silence, translated by Dr. Erika Bianchi, the two of them became fast friends. Dr. Bianchi, Erika, accompanied Camilla at the book discussions and signings, receptions and gatherings.

Dr. Bianchi, teaches at the Institute at Palazzo Rucellai in Florence, Italy, and talked about Camilla's work with fellow colleagues. Before long there was an invitation for Camilla to come teach a couple of writing workshops.

The Institute's website says: "The workshops will be integrated into [...] Italian language classes, [and] will provide a unique opportunity for their students to ponder the different approaches to writing in Italian and English."

Take a look at a downtown Florence map of where the Institute is. What does Camilla think about this? You can imagine! But here's what she writes:

"I'm very excited about going there to teach for two weeks in November. Just the thought of the food starts my heart racing. Slow cooked white beans, pumpkin tortelloni in a burnt butter sauce, chicken with artichokes, boar sausages. I could go on forever. The only thing I don’t like about Tuscan food is the saltless bread."

So come November, Camilla will be back on a trans-Atlantic flight to Rome, and onto a train to Florence, for two weeks of talking and eating and eating and talking! That's the life!