What’s In A Name?
Ms. Publicist: Fifteenth of the month and therefore time for What’s In A Name. What’ll it be this month, Spence?
Spencer Quinn: How about “The Valley?” The Valley is the huge urban area surrounded by vast desert where Chet and Bernie live. The residents call it the Valley – the way the residents of Phoenix do – so that’s how Chet thinks of it.
Ms. P: So Chet and Bernie live in Phoenix?
SQ: Not exactly. They live in an imaginary southwestern city that resembles Phoenix although the vibe might be a little more Tucson-like. I wanted that combination for Chet, the contrast of the urban and the wild, and I think most readers thought: Arizona. But when I do signings in the L.A. area they all think it’s their valley.
Ms. P.: Chet finally does learn the facts.
SQ: Yes. In the Sound and the Furry, book six in the series, there’s this passage:
The wiry dude squinted down at Bernie. Then he laughed. “You’re not from around here.”
“True,” said Bernie.
“Where you from?”
Ha! We were from Arizona? I’d wondered about that.
Ms. P.: Thanks, Spence. See you next month!
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