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Titles: A Rose By Any Other Name…

flower, garden nature, rain, water, drops

 

… might stink to high heaven.

For the last year, I’ve been giving birth. Not exactly of the human variety, but it’s felt like it. I’ve written a novel. There, I said it.

I am a writer, and I’ve written a novel.

The labor was over a year long (can you imagine?), and involved a lot of pain. However, at long last, my baby has been born. I fed her, nourished her, bought her cute outfits, and now it’s coming to the point where I will have to let my baby grow up and move out of the house. She’ll head out into the cold, cruel world where hopefully she’ll help someone, somewhere, escape into another world for a day or two.

The problem is, I’ve struggled with what to call her. She’s had a lot of nicknames over the past two years and too many rejected names to count. You can tell what point I was at in revisions by the title on that particular manuscript (yes, I do save all the versions). One of my favorites is “Generic Title”.

For the last few weeks I’ve been giving myself a lecture. It went something like this:

“If you don’t put a title on this damn thing you can’t put it up on Amazon and nobody will ever read it.”

I know. I know. But nothing seems to fit.

“At this point it doesn’t matter if it fits. You can’t tell people about it if it doesn’t have a title. It’s the first thing people want to know.”

Yes, but…

“Pick something. Anything!”

But it can’t be just anything. It has to be perfect!

“Nothing is perfect. Perfect is code for “never”. Did you spend two years with this story so that it never saw the light of day? Did you write it just to hide it from everyone?”

Well, no.

“Then give it a name! Then get off your behind and write another story. People are waiting!”

Sigh.

Yes, I do have these conversations with myself.

And then I did what I imagine every girl in this position would do. I polled my friends. Some hadn’t read the story, some had. I got all kinds of feedback, for which I’m extremely grateful. In the end, though, I realized that just with any child, the responsibility of giving it a name is mine. I’ll have to live with it for the rest of my life, and I’ll worry about my poor baby getting teased and taunted about it at school. But, for better or worse, I must name her, and stick by it. And her.

I angst over character names, too, but this is ridiculous.

However, I believe I have landed on a title. I think it’s a good one. I think it fits the story, and pulls together a theme that runs throughout. Hopefully everyone else likes it, too.

Curious?

Here it is. *gulp*

 

 

Next week I’ll start a blog series to introduce you to the main characters, and to reveal the cover.

To those who helped me decide on this title, thank you. To those who have experienced all the different iterations, I apologize for being flighty. I swear the next story I write, I’ll think of the title first.

But I don’t promise not to change it!

 

17 comments on… “Titles: A Rose By Any Other Name…”

  1. Love the title 🙂 I’m a title flopper myself. Each new draft comes with a new title based on the revisions, so I feel your pain.

  2. Nice title. It raises all sorts of questions that will hook potential readers into checking out the blurb. Finding titles is really hard (I hate the process!), congratulations for finding one that grabs attention 🙂


  3. Scotiani


    yay!!!! Go Mel! At first I thought you were calling it “A Rose By Any Other Name….” LOL.

  4. Likey, likey, likey. Skipping to the happy song. You got yourself a winner. I understand the difficulty in picking out a title all too well. It feels great having one, doesn’t it?

    • Me either. I actually have 5 comps going right now lol. I suspect I’ll be asking for votes on the final two at some point.

  5. Stronger Than Magic is a really evocative. It feels good to settle on a final name. Maybe 😉 I know the feeling as I’m a title switcher too.

  6. Yay! Love the title. Evokes all kinds of things. What fun! You’ll be dressing baby up and showing her off to everyone before you know it. Congrats!

  7. You chose well!! It evokes feelings and questions and it’s strong! Way to go. For what it’s worth, I don’t have a title for my WIP. Normally I do but this one is harder. *sigh*

    • I don’t know why this one was so hard to put a name on, but it was. I should do a blog post on rejected titles lol.

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