Nice morning surprise: I got an email from the person in charge of publicity and marketing, at Tilbury. This is starting to feel so real. I signed the contract, and yet, I think that until I have it back in my hands with the signature from the publisher, I will want to remain as cool as a cucumber - HA ! Still, they are thinking about publicity, marketing, asking for a PHOTO ! It is all so totally, outrageously unreal ! I love it.
About the title : I'm having a change of heart. I have tried to be reasonable. Truly and sincerely, I tried to find another name. I pushed my "authorly" needs and wants aside for the sake of the book. I spent hours on the net, searching Igbo names and their meanings. I exchanged countless emails with my friend in Nigeria, and she sent me more lists of names, even asking her patients to contribute their stories and knowledge about their own names. All to no avail. No other name feels suitable. In the process, I found several sportsmen on the web who bear that same given name. It's Ifeanyi, by the way. One of them is a football player in the Cincinatti Bengals team ! So, I'm trying something new. Hopefully, the editor and the publisher will accept that. Letting go, yes. Absolutely. If it will benefit the story in the end. But I have to be able to live with that. I've been having nightmares where I'm reading my stories to a classroom full of children, and I blurt out Ifeanyi instead of whatever new name I might have come up with. Most importantly, the character must adopt that new name in a seamless way. It must fit him. It must feel natural and obvious. So far, this has not happened. Maybe he's meant to be Ifeanyi, and Ifeanyi only. It's a lovely name, anyway, with a lovely meaning that suits him and the story : "nothing is impossible." More to come about that, I'm sure.