We were around one of those big shiny board room tables, talking to the ASA about our hopes of working with them.
“What are you doing about the royalties?” someone asked.
We Royals jumped. We are The Royalties. But what was meant was authors’ earnings.
“You’ll have to change your name”.
We all nodded, sadly. It was our worst moment so far. A moment of challenged identity. The Royalties….But who are we? ..who…
After weeks of discussions, arguments, laughter, tears, bottles or red, bottles of white, liaisons, re-liaisons, lists of sensible names that could’ve been dreamed up by a advertising agency focus group..you know the sort…
re:books (“sounds like shoes”)
Slowly the thought emerged: why be sensible about a name?
How sensible was “Penguin” when they began?- But it quickly became one of the world’s most loved names.
What about naming it after our favourite book? Libby said.
More arguments. More cheering for one title, then another. More wine. More dinners, more laisons. Names which got a consensus were found to have gone in the celestial sounding registry of names. (You can imagine a wing-frocked, hugewinged Angel Gabriel with such a list)
Lists were long, getting longer by the day. Fatefully, Wuthering Heights was on everyone’s list.
I think it was Louise’s idea: