Thursday, January 23, 2014

Baby names

Finding a title for my books is always a bit of a tough call.  I come up with lists and ideas and there is always something that I am uncertain about, and always something that doesn't seem quite right.  The only title that I have ever come up with and stuck to was the first book I wrote, The Loss of Deference. As an indie author, I get used to working on my own, and not really having a big team around me.  But sometimes you just need a bit of extra help, right?

When it came to Escaping Life there were at least ten other contenders that had the potential to make the final cut, and in the end I gave the final decision to my husband.  Entrusting him with such power seemed to enlighten something in him, and he has become a title providing machine ever since.  As soon as he gets the hint of a new book in the works, like a lion who suddenly spots a gazelle he wants a full breakdown of plot, characters, and to know the thematic threads which run through the novel and then he goes into overdrive, throwing titles at me sometimes before my eyes have even opened, or my head has lifted from my pillow.

So when I started writing during NaNo last year he was keen to listen to the plot, keen to point out it's flaws (another great help), and find out who the hero was going to be.  I came up with a working title, Omega, which he was obviously pleased about because it is Greek and so is he, and he feels like some of his superior/first/birthplace of civilisation might have rubbed off on me.  But although I could envisage the title on the cover in an elaborate mix of Greek and English characters, there was something that started to niggle at me.  I was starting to go off the idea almost as soon as I came up with it.  So then I checked Amazon, and found irrespective of my feelings about Omega as a title, there is already a book with that title doing pretty well on Amazon.  So I scratched it off the list and came up with another one.  The Winter.

Another perk of having a husband as interested in my publishing career as I have is that I no longer need to check my sales because he does it for me.  And by that I mean that he checks it at least three times a day.  I am sure this is because I promised him an Aston Martin when I make my first million.  So last night when he popped over to KDP to check the days sales, he found something he wasn't expecting. 

"What's this?" he said, looking over at me as if he had just found a message direct from George Clooney in my inbox.

"It's Omega," I said.  "I changed the title." 

Obviously disappointed with the removal of Greekness, he seemed distinctly less impressed by the new offering.  But I trust his judgement because he came up with both Identity X and Psychophilia, titles which I love.  I am not sure The Winter will make it through to final publication, but I look forward to the endless stream of ideas set to rain upon me in the next few weeks now that there is a new challenge ahead.

No comments:

Post a Comment