clues at the scene

clues at the scene

Thursday, March 14, 2013

The Title

The mail today was especially good. At left is the haul.

I admit to not finishing Swamplandia. I started it at a friend's cabin and was one-third of the way through before leaving. Thus, my own lovely copy.

Mrs. Bridge I have not read but should.

Maidenhair is by a surely Russian sot who is deeply on the outs with the new Putin government and if that isn't a recommendation  I don't know what is. It's published in translation by Open Letter Books which in itself is high praise and if you haven't been to their site, go there now (here). Buy a copy of A Thousand Morons while you are there.  With a title like that, what's not to love?

I'm full of trouble tonight because I have a new story to write (hey - aren't you in "edit" mode ?) and of course, I have a story to write because I decided to hang-up the content creation routine for a while.

Nothing like quitting a bottle to give a man a a powerful thirst. Writing is damn near drinking. When you are done with either you think you are ten foot tall and know precisely what is wrong with the world and why you personally are the solution.

I also have to send off the preliminary invites for a critique and publish-prep group. That whole business has devolved into a nasty pile of work roughly akin to plowing with a mule. No way around it.

I should have something witty to say here attributed to Hemingway but I haven't.

My point for the day is on titles. I'm increasingly attracted to titles that describe the true intent of stories and I think that is probably three blondes of wrong.

I have a story whose working title is "I Drown Brett Thompson." Now, in the story I don't have him drown but he's in the water having some trouble when it ends. A more appealing title for readers might be "A Swimming Lesson." Why don't I go with the more attractive working title? Am I trying to alienate an audience?

I'm tired of being deceived in media: movies, books, short story. I'm getting a little weary of it.  I'm willing to change anything for success in submission but for my working titles, I'm going straight-no-chaser.

"When I drink water, I drink water. When I drink whiskey, I drink whiskey." (Maurice Walsh, "The Quiet Man").

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