Quite a lot, actually. A lot of to-ing and fro-ing, trying to find one that looks right, sounds right, balances well on a book cover and isn’t too hard to pronounce (so you don’t end up with lots of confused readers in the bookstore who want to buy your book but don’t know how to say your name and are too embarrassed to go and talk to the girl on the Customer Service counter in case they get it wrong and look like a plonker).
In the opinion of my agent, it is not dissimilar to the naming of cats. I’ve always maintained that cats should be named something you wouldn’t be embarrassed to yell down the street at midnight to get the wretched thing to come home, and my subconscious immediately presented me with an image of a group of agents wandering around Bloomsbury trying to round up their authors after one of Gollancz’s legendary parties. Continue reading