Friday, October 21, 2011
Untitled (and likely to remain so)
Some of us have no trouble coming up with titles, sometimes even before we know what we're going to put in the story to go with the title. At the other end of the spectrum--the very, very, very distant other end--that's where I live.
Most of the poems I've written over the years are untitled. In my head and in my journals, I refer to stories by clumsy monikers like "the time travel story with the dog," and "the Philip and Maggie story," "the old space story," "the new space story," and "that amnesia thing." A very few have working titles, but even those tend to be awkward, hokey, or cutesy (examples: "Dangerous Memories," "Unlikely Angel"), and I pretty much uniformly dislike them all.
I've been trying to come up with some sort of working name for this year's NaNoWriMo, and once again feel like bashing my head against a wall. I have the basic story sort of laid out (in short, it's a rather goofy detective novel set in a future where there's magic, a frog turned into a woman who wants to figure out who did this to her and why, an impulsive and rather bossy fairy, and assorted other characters), but can I come up with a name? Of course not. I'd like something that sort of resembles the titles of old detective novels, being as how this is almost a parody...but the closest I've come up with are "The Color of Jealousy" and "When Worlds Collide," both of which sound disturbingly like bodice-rippers. Oh dear.
And so, little NaNo novel, you are likely to remain "the magic detective story." It's OK. I'll love you (and hate you) just as much as other folks do all their tidily named tales, I promise--bless your undefined heart.