That Sinking Feeling

The Orphan Train

There are few things worse (I may be exaggerating there!) than working on a book for several years, under a title you have become very attached to, only to realise that in the meantime another book has come out with the same title and you need to change your thinking. This is a point where an argument plays out in your head:

“But it’s my title. I’ve been using it longer.”

“It serves you right for being so slow in finishing the book.”

“I had to get it right.”

“Well, to get it right now you need to change the title.”

“I like the title.”

“You’re not getting this.”

… words to the effect of ‘it’s my ball and I’m not playing anymore’ spring to mind. You pout, flounce out of the office and find somewhere to sulk.

After a while the adult in you comes in to play. “This isn’t helping is it?”

You shake your head.

“It’s better to get it right now and plan the launch with a good strong title.”

You nod as the tears trickle down your cheeks. The adult you passes a tissue. You blow your nose noisily and blub “… what…” sniff “… am I going to call it then?”

Adult you gets a pen and paper and starts to share some ideas. You rubbish most of them and then start to throw in one or two of your own. One word is too female and won’t attract male readers. Another word immediately conjures up a major film with a different theme. Several Amazon searches later you have whittled away almost all of the list, but are left with one that just might grow on you.

Dear readers, my novel ‘The Orphan Train’ will not be called ‘The Orphan Train’ as there is a highly successful novel called simply ‘Orphan Train’ which has come out since I started writing it and I don’t want to either a) cause confusion or b) have anyone think I’m jumping on the bandwagon. I think I know what it will be called, but I need to finish mulling it over and consulting with others before I can confirm.

The lesson learned from this… well there are probably several, but I think the most important two are a) when you start on a project don’t take so many years to finish it and b) don’t be so precious about a title!

Watch this space … the production process is underway and you will be able to read it soon.

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