Meet my translator!
I’m happy to announce that my walking guide, Seductive Venice: In Casanova’s Footsteps, will soon be published in Italian!
Here’s how this came about: My friend Adriano, who shares my interest in Casanova and has helped me for years digging up details on the guy (you may remember I posted about him as my “pine nut friend”), well, he shared my work with Tiziana. Her kids are mostly grown now, and she found herself wanting a new challenge. Why not translate my work?
Tiziana began with the chapter on Rosalba Carriera from A Beautiful Woman in Venice. (I posted that work previously.) From there, she started working on Seductive Venice. We met via email, shared some photos, discussed the writing, and soon found that we had much in common. Tiziana was enjoying the work, and Adriano began searching for the quotes that accompany the text. You see, Casanova wrote his memoirs in French, and I had used the William Trask English translation, but for Italian, Adriano became the expert on finding the right sentences.
Last summer, I talked to my publisher, Giovanni DiStefano at Supernova Edizioni in Venice, and he agreed to publish the work. Then Tiziana and Adriano really began in earnest! Emails flew amongst us. How to translate some of the English puns that don’t work in Italian? Questions about phrasing? Adriano even found a few errors or holes in my research, being the sleuth and stickler that he is.
The text is now done, and I sent it off to Giovanni this week. With the direction of Tiziana and Adriano, my tireless partner RJ revised the maps into Italian. I have no idea when Giovanni will complete the formatting, and we’ll have some final proofreading to do. But hopefully within a few months I’ll have another book in the stores!
While my guidebook goes by the title Seductive Venice: In Casanova’s Footsteps in America, published under my imprint Ca’ Specchio, the Supernova edition is titled Casanova’s Venice: A Walking Guide. The new translation, I believe, will be called A Venezia con Casanova.
This work is truly a labor of love. I make a very small percentage from book sales, and Tiziana and Adriano have offered to take no part of that percentage, despite my offers. Giovanni says that books in Italian don’t sell well (a fact that was confirmed by Luca Zentilini, publisher at the bookstore Linea d’Acqua in Venice). Let’s see what we can do to change that trend! Watch this space to see when the book become available.
On this recent trip to Venice, Adriano came up from Rome and Tiziana made the trip north from her home town near Rome. We met up in Campo Santo Stefano, with another friend, Stefano, a Venetian who often helps me out by taking photos or finding small facts for me. Tiziana’s daughter joined us as well. We all exchanged gifts: Tiziana and I both had the idea of giving each other a journal! Adriano presented me with a different kind of journal: a volume produced by Elisabetta Caminer Turra, one of the women featured in A Beautiful Woman in Venice. (I’ll share more about that in a separate post.)
I walked with Tiziana to the Piazza to meet her husband and son. What lovely people and lovely friendships! I never knew that writing would lead to these kinds of encounters.