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Help needed: Which is the best title?

Got a question/comment about the creative process of writing? Post it here!

Best title for my YA manuscript?

Fallen Angels
1
14%
Suffer and be still
4
57%
A more permanent Hell
1
14%
These all suck! I have a better idea!
1
14%
 
Total votes: 7

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MLE (Emily Cotton)
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Interest in HF: started in childhood with the classics, which, IMHO are HF even if they were contemporary when written.
Favourite HF book: Prince of Foxes, by Samuel Shellabarger
Preferred HF: Currently prefer 1600 and earlier, but I'll read anything that keeps me turning the page.
Location: California Bay Area

Post by MLE (Emily Cotton) » Wed July 13th, 2011, 1:16 am

I don't think it's too long. I Could Not Stop For Death kind of grabs you, makes you wonder. Death is a word that has tension, and you want that in a title.

Maybe you could work in a few of Dickinson's poems, have some character in the book quote the title poem?
Last edited by MLE (Emily Cotton) on Wed July 13th, 2011, 1:18 am, edited 1 time in total.

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Michy
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Post by Michy » Wed July 13th, 2011, 1:49 am

I, too, think it's got definite possibilities.

You could quote a line or two from the poem at the start of each chapter. Quite a few authors do that sort of thing.

Another idea would be to take the sewing that is such a major part of her life, turn that into a metaphor for mending/holding life together, and use that as a title - ?

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Divia
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Post by Divia » Wed July 13th, 2011, 2:09 am

Thank you, both of you. :)

Good idea about adding poems from Miss Emily.
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wendy
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Post by wendy » Wed July 13th, 2011, 1:53 pm

[quote=""Matt Phillips""]I voted for Suffer and Be Still, although just Be Still might be better, in my opinion. Seems to ring true for the setting - she is probably feeling social pressure not to make waves, to suppress problems, but doesn't know the solution that will allow her to do that ...

A More Permanent Hell might strike people as sounding odd because how can something be "more" permanent? It's either permanent or temporary.

Good luck![/quote]

I like Be Still too!
Wendy K. Perriman
Fire on Dark Water (Penguin, 2011)
http://www.wendyperriman.com
http://www.FireOnDarkWater.com

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Michy
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Post by Michy » Wed July 13th, 2011, 5:44 pm

I like Be Still, also. Or how about just Still? That has a nice double-meaning to it -- still as in not moving, or still as in continuing. Either of which sounds like it could apply to your heroine.

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Michy
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Post by Michy » Wed July 13th, 2011, 8:05 pm

You know, the more I think about it the better I like just "Still" as a title. It is simple but strong. And it has multiple interpretations, which I like.

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Divia
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Post by Divia » Wed July 13th, 2011, 9:37 pm

Still.

I could see this as a title. I'm on the fence about it (although really it not my final decision anyway, now is it ;) )
News, views, and reviews on books and graphic novels for young adult.
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User avatar
MLE (Emily Cotton)
Bibliomaniac
Posts: 3562
Joined: August 2008
Interest in HF: started in childhood with the classics, which, IMHO are HF even if they were contemporary when written.
Favourite HF book: Prince of Foxes, by Samuel Shellabarger
Preferred HF: Currently prefer 1600 and earlier, but I'll read anything that keeps me turning the page.
Location: California Bay Area

Post by MLE (Emily Cotton) » Wed July 13th, 2011, 9:40 pm

Wow, when I hear the word 'still' in a 1870's farm context, the first thing I think of is moonshine. But that's just me.

The problem with the title is that it has neither tension nor action, and that works for literary, but I don't think YA readers would be drawn to it. Altho if any of them were knowledgeable enough to make the alcohol connection (unlikely), that would probably bring all kinds of action to mind.

If suffer and be still captures the essence of the plot, how about something that has inherent contrast, like A Silent Scream?
Last edited by MLE (Emily Cotton) on Wed July 13th, 2011, 9:43 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Michy
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Post by Michy » Wed July 13th, 2011, 10:39 pm

[quote=""Divia""](although really it not my final decision anyway, now is it ;) )[/quote] No, I guess whatever you decide to go with you can't let yourself get too attached to it, because chances are it will be changed somewhere in the process.

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Miss Moppet
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Post by Miss Moppet » Thu July 14th, 2011, 10:00 am

I like Fallen Angels but apart from the doppelganger problem, I think it suggests what Waterstone's is presently pleased to call "Dark Fantasy" rather than straight HF.

I can't think of a good alternative other than what's been suggested but I really would not worry about it - it's the material that will attract interest at this stage, not the title, and I agree with Michy that you are better off having an open mind about it than being wedded to a title that agent may well wish to change.

The story sounds great and that's far more important. :) :)

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