Date night in Turkey

DEAL NEWS: The Boat People will be translated into Turkish! My clever agent Stephanie has sold Turkish language rights to a publisher over there. It's our first translation deal and hopefully not the last one.

A few years ago my husband and I went to Turkey on holiday. On one of our last nights in Istanbul, we took the ferry across the Bosphorus, away from the touristy part of town to residential Kadıköy. It was, hands down, one of our funnest date nights and also one of my favourite holiday memories of all time.

We wandered through the market, treated ourselves to the best coffee in town, got enmeshed in a hyper competitive game of tavla (we got so into it, in fact, that the waiter serving us tea forgot we were tourists and addressed us in Turkish). There was nothing particularly special about the evening except this feeling of complete immersion in a place and the wonderful familiarity of this easy-going corner of the city. People more or less ignored us and so we could forget we were outsiders and just imagine for a few hours that we were locals on a stroll through our neighbourhood. And what do we do when we're at home? Visit a book shop, of course. There was a lovely little one in Kadıköy, somewhat shabby and dusty and bursting with books. What a thrill to think of The Boat People IN TURKISH in that store.


A big announcement to kick off 2016: I've signed on with Transatlantic Agency. They're a literary agency with two decades of experience and many, many excellent authors on their roster. They make publishing deals here and abroad and sell TV and movie rights. I've had my eye on them for months and, frankly, am still gobsmacked they agreed to take me on.


I'm now working with Stephanie Sinclair (my agent!) to get the manuscript for The Boat People up to scratch because at the end of the month, she'll begin shopping it around to publishing houses. I'll spare you the terrible metaphor about finding a home etc. and just say that I'm pants-on-head ecstatic about making this official.