Posts Tagged ‘What’s In A Name’

What’s In A Name?

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June 16th, 2018 Posted 8:31 am

Mrs. Publicist: Welcome – a day late – to our regular monthly feature, where the writer discusses a character name from one of his books. Hi, Pete – or Spence, as some think of you – I know you have a new series coming, told from alternating points of view, one being that of Arthur, a dog, and the other that of Queenie, a … cat? Is that true?

Peter Abrahams: If anything is, yes, it’s true. For what it’s worth, I don’t think I’ve ever had quite as much fun writing a book as I did on RUFF VS. FLUFF, volume one of the new Queenie and Arthur series.

Mrs. P: Middle-grade but adults with fake ID can read them, too?

Pete: According to a 5-4 ruling by the Supreme Court.

Mrs. P: You’ve never done cat narration before.

Pete: So therefore – why not?

Mrs. P: You’ve said you can’t write a character until you have the exact right name. How long did it take to come up with Queenie?

Pete: I was lucky. The name was the very first thing that came to me, after the idea for the book itself. Like the first car on the train, after the engine.

Mrs. P: Thanks, Pete! See you next month for another edition of What’s In A Name. But I wouldn’t be doing my job if I didn’t mention that RUFF VS. FLUFF by Spencer Quinn is now available for pre-order from all the usual places. Two unreliable narrators for the price of one!

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What’s In A Name?

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May 16th, 2018 Posted 8:07 am

Mrs. Publicist: We should have done this yesterday, but no worries. This isn’t brain surgery.

Peter Abrahams (Spencer Quinn): People always use that expression, but is it actually harder than, say, hand surgery?

Mrs. P: You and I wouldn’t know. What character name should we do today? I was wondering about Corporal Luke Crannack in THE RIGHT SIDE. A basically comic figure, I would say, until that last scene in Afghanistan, when we see something of his depth – and even sweetness.

PA: Ah, I’m afraid that name is an example of me having fun at work. I liked the sound of the ┬áname of course – all those hard C’s and K’s – a sort of tiny sound poem, perhaps a bit like weaponry. But the name was inspired by Lucas Cranach the Elder, the fifteenth century master and one of my favorites. The college I went to is known for strength of its art department and I took a lot of art courses way back when. As for any connection between Corporal Crannack and Cranach the artist – zip.

Mrs. P: Thanks, Pete! See you next month for more of What’s In A Name!

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What’s In A Name?

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April 19th, 2018 Posted 7:23 am

Mrs. Publicist: Past time for this month’s What’s In A Name, where Peter Abrahams aka Spencer Quinn discusses a character name from one of his books. Pete, we’ve never done place names. You make up a lot of places – the Valley, say, in the Chet and Bernie mysteries, 0r –

Pete: Or St. Roch in the Bowser and Birdie middle-grade series!

Mrs. P: Which, I should point out, adults with fake ID are also reading. Tell us about naming St. Roch.

Pete: Well, Birdie and her family live in bayou country, so I wanted something French. And St. Roch is the patron saint of dogs. The series is narrated by Bowser. And while there is a St. Roch section of New Orleans, there’s no St. Roch in Louisiana.

Mrs. P: So – a perfect storm.

Pete: I think of it as a perfect calm.

Mrs. P: See you next month for another edition of What’s In A Name. Maybe the readers have a suggestion.

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What’s In A Name?

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March 16th, 2018 Posted 9:30 am

Power is back! So, a day late, here’s What’s In A Name, wherein Mrs. Publicist and the writer discuss a character name from one of his books.

Mrs. P: What’ll it be this time, Pete?

Peter Abrahams (aka Spencer Quinn): How about Dr. Machado?

Mrs. P: The somewhat unhelpful shrink from THE RIGHT SIDE?

PA: Certainly unhelpful from his patient LeAnne’s point of view. Machado means ax or hatchet in Spanish and Portuguese.

Mrs. P: So – a crude kind of tool for doing delicate work?

PA: Exactly! You don’t need me anymore!

Mrs. P: See you April 15 for more of What’s In A Name!

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The Books



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