Saturday, April 23, 2011

A Word On Titles: They Are Hard.

Or at least, they are for me. You know, I keep thinking, the title of any given piece, that is the first thing the reader sees, sometimes if they look only at the table of contents, the title makes the difference between a reader giving it attention or passing it over. Following this logic, I feel that a title should be awesome, should give a little info on the piece without telling you everything.

And I just have no gift for finding such titles.

I'll come up with this really great poem or story that I think is sweet, and then I'll be finished and ready to hit save, and I just can't think of a name for the damn thing! I mean, like nothing creative comes to mind that doesn't sound trite or like an utter brain fart. Fucking titles, I think, but I'll still have to make one up because I don't really like anything titled 'untitled'. Yay conundrum.

Being as unimaginative as I am when it comes to titles, I actually managed to give two separate pieces the exact same name. Twice. So far.

In both cases, a poem and a story have to share a name.

The first incident was 'The Other Road'. The poem is here and the story is forthcoming from Sam's Dot. In this case, I wrote the poem first but even while I was writing it, I began to feel that it had a story somewhere in it. However, I'm not sure I would have ever sat down and actually written that after I was done with the poem, but Tyree Campbell of Sam's Dot suggested that it would work better as a story and so, people pleaser that I am, I wrote it. Naturally, the story and poem share the same roots, but they turned out quite differently. Both may deal with the same narrative but they still look at it from different angles. Also, the story really does have a different ending. It even has a sequel that I so ingenuously titled 'The Girl Who Chose The Other Road'. You can find it in Shelter of Daylight Issue 5.

Now, the other incident is 'Wine'. The poem was published in Basement Stories #2, right here, and the story has not yet found a home. It does contain violence and sex however, though nothing very graphic. Probably. This time, there is no connection between those two pieces (though on a side note, 'Wine' is also one of my Red Riding Hood poems; I've been doing a lot with this fairy tale).

I don't know if I'm the only person who has trouble naming what she wrote properly or if, like coffee, that's just a writer thing. I'm not saying I never came up with a good title, but something that really satisfies me, grumpy critic that I am in my heart of hearts? Well. I guess I'll just have to add 'Become master namer' to my (long) list of highly desirable achievements. Grrr.

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