Czech Mate

June 25th, 2008

Oh, that pun really stinks. It really stinks. But like strong cheeses, I find the worst-smelling puns the most enjoyable. Besides, it was that or “Czech it out,” so just think, it could have been a lot worse.

Anyway, Czech readers rejoice because I have received my copies of the Czech translation of The Blade Itself, Sama Cepel, from the publisher Solaris. Apologies for the lack of appropriate accents which no doubt totally change the meaning. It’s a surprisingly neat little book, quite densely set but only 420 pages in a mass-market-ish sized format, 100 less than the UK one. Surprising since translation usually adds some bulk – it’s literally less than half the thickness of the behemoth 800 page German version. They’ve gone for the UK art, which seems to be proving popular in varied markets, though without the grip-friendly textured paper which is the most often praised feature of my writing.

Really been trying to think up a decent pun revolving around Sweden or Swedish, could not think of anything. “Swede dreams are made of these?” No. God no. Let’s just cut to the chase, then:

Exciting news for the many, many English-speaking Swedish devotees of this blog. And the many Swedish-speaking English devotees who would rather read books in Swedish than English. For the Forma publishing group have secured rights to publish The Blade Itself in Swedish. It appears they’ll be doing a hardback and mass-market paperback, and also a book club version in which the book will probably be split into two parts that it may fit through a letterbox. A common thing in the Scandinavian market, apparently, but since each book is in two parts, and publishing it as six small books rather than three big ones has always for some reason vaguely fascinated me, it shouldn’t be a problem…

Posted in news by Joe Abercrombie on June 25th, 2008. Tags:

12 comments so far

  • jdp says:

    ‘A Swede Deal’

    ‘Swede as Taboo’

    ‘Mashed Swede, gravy and International Publishing Rights’

    Come now, Joe, was that really so hard? We all know you’ve got it in you. Punishment is 100 lines:

    ‘A book by any other name would smell as Swede’.

  • Jason says:

    I think “Czech mate” is an appropriate amount of cheesiness. “Czech it out” however, would have been like drowning in Fondue

  • Anonymous says:

    I wouldn’t be so happy for the Czech or the Swedish because in my experience translation usually suck. I can’t believe your dialogues will sound anything that funny translated.

    People learn English, dammit. 🙂

  • daft sod says:

    I just thought about the amount of pages I saved by reading the UK version of THE TRILOGY. Over 200 alone for the first book. That makes about 600 pages for the whole TRILOGY. I bet I also saved some money, because German translations of English fantasy books tend to be more expensive.

    PS George RR Martin’s books are split in two on the German market…
    PPS Just ponder on that if you’re going for 1000 pages, eh Joe.

  • Gabriele C. says:

    Hehe, that’s because German has such wonderful long words. Mixed with some short ones; the reason why there’s no word count in the publication business, but a sign count. I don’t know Czech, but if it shares some features with Russian, it won’t be a surprise the book is shorter. For example, Russian has no defined article ‘the’ and the verb ‘to be’ is left out half of the time as well.

  • Bob Lock says:

    Swedes too eh? That’s a turnip for the book. Oh you lead such a Czechered life, Joe…

  • jdp, bob,
    This is not an excuse for you to air you stinking puns. Or is it?

    Well, translations may sometimes suck and not be funny but, hey, it’s a revenue stream. And it might seem hypocritical for English-speakers to complain about foreigners not learning their language. I simply will not have hyopcrisy on this blog.

    daft sod,
    Some of George’s books are split in two for the English market. Mine are svelt by comparison, though I am trying, and failing, to make them shorter.


  • Gabriele C. says:

    Yes, languages are fascinating. I admit to being a bit of a geek, though I wouldn’t go as far as Tolkien an invent them.
    I only have some basic Russian, it being my third foreign language at school, and that’s a few years back. 😉

  • Susanne says:

    Your name onna cake, look!

    (Hope that link works.)

    This world is so VERY small.

  • Hmmmm,
    Name on a cake, huh?
    One of the advantages of the surname beginning ABE, even Dan Abnett must take second place to my alphabetical awesomenity.

    Looks like they didn’t get more than half way through the Bs, though.

  • Fluffywascal says:

    Just came to your blog looking for a map so I could trace the campaigns and (why I’m suprised I can’t imagine) find that you are as delightfully insane irl as you are through your characters…if you are not already big pals with them I think you would enjoy the books and indeed the blogs of Charles Stross and Malcolm Pryce- I can imagine Ninefingers and Louis Knight having a beer together….oh yes and Max Cannon’s red meat cartoons blah rant- am off to carry on looking for a map…

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