Sunday, August 9, 2009

Book Title?

I posted this over at Frankie Writes, but this felt like a First Novels Club worthy post, so here you go-partly inspired by the fact that I just got asked about this fifty times and partly because Donna, Sara and I were discussing this sort of thing yesterday.

Concerning Book Titles...I just updated my about me section and I took out the working title of my book which has been the title since 2004! WOW!

So that basically means for 6 years I've been considering this book The Seven Sisters Brandywine, or in short, SSB. And for those 6 years that title rocked (in my mind) and it made sense. Here I shall show you why. I present to you the premise.

Seven sisters each gain a single magic power the morning they turn sixteen, except for the youngest, Lilliana Brandywine.

But now....well my book is a bit more complicated, I've explored the world I've created much more deeply, including the lives of others who get a magic power on their birthday (originally the girls thought they were the only ones until book 2). Now, we know that lots of people have the magic gene (which is always always passed down no matter what, no ifs ands or buts about it-sorry no squibs) so that makes it much much worse when Lilliana doesn't get her power-she is the first person in history, not to mention the headmaster's daughter and the youngest of the most famous magical family in America-pretty bad. But now I don't know what to call it. In my head I've just shortened it to Brandywine.

Last night I went to the annual Golden Heart Awards Banquet and everyone ( I mean everyone) was asking me about the book, how was it going, where was I (finished-finished I say, except for revisions). But for the first time ever (it would seem) everyone wanted to know the title. After being asked what my book is called fifty times, you can understand why I am plagued by this sort of thing on a Sunday morning.

Here is what I know about titles.

A Curse Dark As Gold is an awesome title and I'm pretty sure that Cheryl Klein, aka editor of awesome created the title (if I remember correctly). Elizabeth C. Bunce originally titled it Charlotte Miller.

13 Reasons Why by Jay Asher was orginally titled...oh crap I'm drawing a blank and too lazy to look it up, it's something close to this though....The Audio-Biography (instead of Autobiography-clever) of Hannah Baker, A Life in 13 Tapes. But Razorbill said no, un-uh!

Vampire Academy by Richelle Mead...originally called Kissed by Shadows. Looks like Richelle kind of got her way with book 3 though, Shadow Kissed.

Janice Harding originally titled her upcoming debut The Pain Merchant, which is AWESOME, but her US publishers said, "No actually your book is called The Shifter." I'm still totally excited for this debut and Janice is getting interviewed by the FNC but man, her original title was cool.

I have a feeling that when J.K. Rowling said "Hey sup Bloomsbury UK, um can you get Arthur Levine in America on conference call? Right, great. So Harry Potter book 7 will be called Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows. All right? K, thanks, bye!"

I don't know the story behind this, but Becca Fitzpatrick, if you happen to stop by maybe you can shed some light. Was Hush, Hush always your book title or did someone else decide that (because it's awesome)?

Any ideas on how I should come up with my own title -it feels wierd to be titleless. Or should I not worry about it, because someday soon I'll have an awesome awesome publisher who is all like, "Oh hey Frankie, how's it going. So your book Brandywine, uh-huh. FYI, so NOT the title. We're going to go ahead and call your book Made of Awesome."

And I'm like, "Oh really? Thanks. I would have never thought to call my book that."

My awesome publisher, "That's what we're here for, Frankie, to slap titles on books of authors like you who just don't know what to call things."

Me, "Oh thank you publisher! Now I don't need to worry anymore."

And...I'm pretty sure my lack of sleep loopiness has just gone into overdrive.


  1. Wow, I had no idea publishers could change the title of your book and not think twice about it. Well, that sucks..I like the title you picked for your book though so hopefully they like it! I dunno why but when I read the description of your book the title 'Morning of the Six' popped in my mind lol...anywho, hopefully they like your title :)


  2. Yeah, they can totally change it up on you. For the six years my title worked I felt like I'd go to war with any publisher who wanted to change it because it seemed so perfect, but I have no clue, so who knows maybe it will come to me or maybe they'll have a good idea. Razorbill did a good job with 13 Reasons Why, so sometimes it works out.

  3. I love hearing what titles used to be. I just heard that my favorite deb title for next year, TOTALLY SWEET NINJA DEATH SQUAD, has been changed. So sad!

  4. Oh man what's the new title? That was awesome!!!


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