Saturday, August 8, 2009

What's in a name?

Just found out that the name I eventually came up with for TFN is shared by one of those ultra-depressing Mis lit books. Bum. (That's not the name of the book, by the way.) You know the ones... white cover... handwritingy typeface... supposedly cute child staring balefully out at you begging you to pick the book off the shelf at Tesco because maybe, just maybe, that will make the hurt go away.

The one that shares its name with my novel is apparently 'The most shocking story of abuse ever told'. Yikes. Now I've never read one of these books, and I probably never will. Perhaps they're wonderful, and life-affirming in a way I could never even hope to understand. Doesn't stop me being annoyed that one of them has MY book title. The cheek of it.

I shouldn't be too surprised. The title I chose is, after all, just a word. And not even a particularly unusual word either. And I shouldn't be too bothered either, knowing full well that when (if?) my novel sees the light of day, it may be with a different title - one that I'd never have thought of in a gazillion years.

In my day job (children's book editor), we change titles ALL the time. The title has to sell the book, and the fact of the matter is that the author isn't always/ever the best person to know how to do that. (Note to self: be more sympathetic to authors in day job.)

Now, I'm just going to mosey on over to Amazon to see if my working title for The Second Novel has already been taken by another tragic childhood tale. I'm thinking it's a distinct possibility.

Awesome YA book you really should read: Elsewhere, by Gabrielle Zevin (It's life-changingly good.)