To Tom, No To Dick, No…To Harry

dedicationThe edit is nearly done which means I can turn my attention to important details such as which earrings to wear to the Man Booker award ceremony. Also, to whom should I dedicate this new book? I have a patchy history when it comes to dedications. Two friends who have been my dedicatees are no longer my friends (and I don’t think it was anything to do with the quality of the writing) and one friend still doesn’t know I dedicated a book to her because she’s never opened the copy I gave her and I’m now too pissed off to mention it.

Personally I would be thrilled if someone dedicated a book to me. Unless they were some creepy stalker, or someone who suffered from adverbarrhoea. Apart from that, I’d love it. It would be more gratifying even than becoming a crossword puzzle clue. Heck, I’d settle for being the dedicatee of a trifold pamphlet.

But I’m a bit stuck for this book. My grandchildren are possible candidates, but there are a lot of them. If they’re to have a book each I’ll have to keep writing for another fifteen years. The very thought makes me want to go for a lie down. Dead people are pretty safe. I’ve dedicated books to my Dad who didn’t live to see me published, and my late Mum who did. So a deceased friend is one possibility. Or I could just put it out there, like a literary yard sale. A dedication prize draw. Anyone fancy a book dedicated to them? No strings attached, except I don’t want you turning round and snarling at me in five years time because we differ over the Common Agricultural Policy or some similar deal breaker. Bidding is open till March 31st.

Meanwhile, here’s Ella.




  1. Anne Bond on March 13, 2014 at 2:11 pm

    Me me me! Because I rave about your books to those who ask what I’m reading and – more importantly – those who don’t. Because you have replaced Anne Tyler as my favourite author (and I didn’t think that was going to be possible) . Because despite the continuation of historically-themed books (I really love the more contemporary ones) I just can’t wait for your next success. Nuff said ?!

  2. heather machin on March 20, 2014 at 10:12 pm

    me me me! just because. and partly to make up for when my husbands grandfather wrote his memoirs, (a slim volume, with blurry photos) he FORGOT to mention our children, one of whom was named after him.

  3. Laura L. Sullivan on March 24, 2014 at 10:52 am

    Oh, me, please! Because you are the only writer for whose books I pay transatlantic shipping fees. (Everyone else… meh, when — if — it gets to the states I’ll read it.) I can even offer you a dedication exchange. Unfortunately my next book will probably be a somewhat raunchy YA with a male protagonist, but still, millions (well, a couple of hundred, or dozens) of teenaged boys will be tempted to investigate your name when they read the dedication. Heck, maybe I’ll dedicate it to you anyway, just to confuse them…

    • Helen Lees on March 30, 2014 at 6:35 pm

      Laura – I order books from the UK online store The Book Depository and they don’t charge shipping fees – not even all the way to Australia where I am!
      Helen Lees

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