About eighteen months since I was told I was going to be translated for sale in the Czech Republic, Hrebik Zarazany Do Sdrce is in better bookstores across Prague. That’s A Nail Through the Heart to those of us in the English-speaking world.
Being translated is one of the really rarefied pleasures of writing. It’s difficult to explain the satisfaction, but somehow it’s an all-the-way-to-the-toes thrill to know that somewhere in the world someone has labored long and hard over something I wrote, bringing it to a whole new readership. It’s very, very gratifying.
It also allows me to have the coolest segment in all my bookcases — me in different languages. Few objects delight me more than the first copy of a book in translation. There it is, with my name in it, a title I’ve never seen or heard before, and I didn’t have to do any extra work.
Now, what I’m hoping for is an invitation to Prague, one of the four cities in the world I most want to see. I’ll even pay my own way, if someone will just take charge of me, introduce me to some interesting people, and show me around.
Then I can say to people, “I’ll do it right after I get back from Prague.” I might even buy a smoking jacket.