Six LDS Writers and A Frog

Wednesday, July 02, 2008

If Jeff and Rob Can Get Away With Slacking . . .

Since non-blogging seems to be the trend of the week, who am I to break the chain? See you next week!

Okay, I’ll write something. But not much of something. Like Jeff, I’m trying to finish up a book, though mine is in a much earlier stage. His is in the editing stage. Mine is in the "I said I could finish this WHEN?” pre-submission stage. I’m sure his work is much harder—you think it’s easy to torment your readers with killer cliffhangers? Sweat drips off the end of your nose and your throat gets hoarse from evil cackling. Or so I assume.

Right now I’m in the process of enriching my story. The basic story is in place, but it needs to be . . . more. And that pesky backstory is still underdeveloped. One of these days I’m going to write a book that focuses exclusively on Now, as opposed to having things that happened years ago be so darned relevant.

I love how little things can enrich a book—little threads that embellish patterns and link things more tightly together. Did you know my heroine had a silly, affectionate nickname for her late fiancé? Neither did I, until this morning. I used it to add creepiness to a scene and heighten the pressure on the heroine (Sorry, Julie—you didn’t think I was going to use the nickname in a romantic way, did you? Come on—it’s me!)

I still don’t have a working title for this book. I wish I did. It would be nice to have something to call it. Anyone have any suggestions? Here’s a little blurb:

In one black, windswept night, her sister’s death in a hit-and-run accident and the unexplained disappearance of her fiancé tore Emily Ramsey’s life to shreds. Three years later, she’s finally healing, and her engagement to Zach Sullivan makes everything picture-perfect. But a series of chilling events makes it appear that either Emily is dangerously obsessed with the past or she’s become the target of a killer who aims to destroy her mind and then her life.

All title suggestions—even horrible, silly, or warped ones—will be gladly received. Help me out, will you? For anyone who sends me a title suggestion, bad or good, I'll enter your name in a drawing for either a copy of Fool Me Twice or The Believer. I'll draw a name on Saturday, July 5th.


At 7/02/2008 3:11 PM, Blogger Jennie said...

Marked for Madness Or you could do like I do and just give it a number. I'm terrible at titles and my publisher usually changes them anyway.

At 7/02/2008 3:20 PM, Blogger Melanie said...

Maybe it could be Picture Perfect. And the cover would have a torn photo on the front or a ripped painintg or some other picture that fits the story.

At 7/02/2008 3:25 PM, Blogger Evil HR Lady said...

Emily and Zach: A love story.

Or you could follow Sariah's lead and use: The psychopath who loved me.

At 7/02/2008 3:33 PM, Blogger Kerry Blair said...

It Was a Black and Windy Night.

Oh, wait. That puts "black" on the cover twice. I'll keep thinking. :)

At 7/02/2008 3:34 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

You know the story better than I. At least we hope that this single paragraph is not everything you know. With that appeal to not be harsh on these suggestions, here is an attempt to sift out a few themes and then suggest some possible titles.

I'm assuming that the "series of chilling events" have something to do with the finace who disappeared and that he was in some way related to the death of the heroine's sister. He likely killed the poor woman or at least had a reason to want her dead. His re-appearance is also likely related to the sister's death which has implications for the threat on the heroine's life in the present story.

Some of the themes appear to be: a ruined, shreded life. The past haunting the present. The past not appearing to be what it was. In fact most of the themes I see coming out of your little blurb seem to be how a violent past filled with mystery is suddenly affecting the characters in the present. Here are some possible title suggestions since everyone knows you need at least a working title to feel good about yourself and also communicate like a pro with your editor. These may be lame, but at least I'm giving it a go. Here are the first ten off the top of my head plus a couple of bonus guesses:

1. Blind Spot (has an auto accident metaphor and a double meaning)

2. Fool Me Twice (couldn't resist that one)

3. Back at You

4. Circle of Death

5. Ricochet

6. Revolver

7. Never Say Die (double meaning in that the fiance isn't dead and the heroine is trying to rebuild her life)

8. Double Blind

9. Comeback

10. Vanishing Act

11. Mary Go Round (if your heroine's name was mary that would be cool)

12. Detoured (not knowing how the hit and run happened here is another automobile metaphor)

13. Round Robin (again a cool title if the heroine's name were Robin...double meaning in there somewhere)

Okay, gotta go. Lots of my own title to figure out. Have fun with your writing and even more fun with your working title lottery.


At 7/02/2008 3:53 PM, Blogger Lucy Eliza said...

I've always wanted to call one of my stories "Flashback". May be a bit over used but it might work for just a working title. How about "Emily Ramsey and the Crazed Killer" or you could even spell it Krazed for some alliteration!

At 7/02/2008 4:17 PM, Blogger Jon Spell said...

I fully admit that I'm not sure how serious these are. Consider that the working title for one of my projects is "Allen Invasion".

Trapped in the Headlights (with apologies to Matt Buckley)

Shards of a Broken Heart

Driven to Kill (my fave)

Courting Death (or A Date with Death)

A Tangled Web


At 7/02/2008 4:26 PM, Blogger Janice said...

How about
Hit and Run
Great Expectations (Makes it sound like a classic already, doesn't it?)

At 7/02/2008 5:13 PM, Blogger Gamila said...

Shatter Glass (you know car acident...)
Rearview Mirror (cars again and you know you look back into the past/behind you and all that jazz..)

I'll stop now....

At 7/02/2008 6:05 PM, Blogger Pat said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

At 7/02/2008 6:17 PM, Blogger Pat said...

Hmmm.... if the fiance were to turn out to be the evil culprit, you could call it
"Blast from the Past."

At 7/02/2008 6:31 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Pat: I love the blast from the past. And Gamila, the Rearview Mirror is great.

So Sister Black, are you going to give us more details about the plot line so we can zero in on our title suggestions or are you going to say something like, great guys, thanks for the suggestions. I'll enter your name into the drawing for Saturday and then leave us hanging.

I say we all revolt. No more titles until the author comes clean with the goods. We want the full story honey. Who murdered the sister? Is the first finace still alive? What are his motives. And, what about Zach Sullivan?

Tell us now. We know your email address.


At 7/02/2008 6:38 PM, Blogger Kerry Blair said...

Ignore Ly, Stephanie. We DON'T want to know the details, we want to wait and READ THE BOOK!

Now, if you'd offer weekly installments, I could go for that...

At 7/02/2008 7:08 PM, Blogger Melanie said...

Ooh, ooh, I change my vote to Emily and Zach: A Love Story. Or maybe Sullivan's Travels. Then you could have Liliputians, like Gulliver.

Hm. No, maybe you just could have a diminutive character named Lily Putian.

Wait, maybe no Liliputians.

Maybe you could just title it "Road Rage." Or give it a chick lit title like "Crazy Emily and the Reappearing Groom" and then slap a pastel cover on it and entice a whole new portion of the market into reading your book. (Yeah....that was a joke. But I'm serious about the Liliputians.)

(No, I'm not.)

At 7/02/2008 7:51 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Alas, they always ignore me. Especially that Kerry person. Who does she think she is anyway? Rule maker? Queen of the frog blog? Everybody's trusted friend?

Well trust no more! Black is going to spill the goods or I will start spamming unrelentlingly until we find out what happened to this unhappy couple.

And Kerry, did you happen to see the raising of the red flag over at that other blog? Just wondering. Inquiring minds you know.


At 7/02/2008 8:21 PM, Blogger Stephanie Black said...

Okay, okay. Ly's threat of spam did it. I'll spill a few key plot points.

*Something creepy happens.
*Later,something else creepy happens.
*At the climax, something creepy happens.
*Chapter 12 involves Liliputians.
*Harry doesn't die.
*Emily's father is Darth Vader.
*The butler did it.

Thanks for all the title suggestions. You guys are awesome!

At 7/02/2008 8:38 PM, Blogger Pat said...

LOL - So, you're looking for something like "The Creepy, Creepy, Creepy, Mini Anti-Death Vader Valet?"
(Tee hee)

At 7/03/2008 12:09 AM, Blogger Stephanie Black said...

Pat! That's it! It really rolls off the tongue.

At 7/03/2008 2:34 AM, Blogger Kenji said...

Our humble suggestion, SHREDDED PAST, or TORMENTED MIND,

Just so our name will be entered into the drawing... (lol)

At 7/03/2008 3:10 AM, Blogger Melanie Goldmund said...

Emily's father is Darth Vader? Wait a minute, that must mean her real name is *gasp* Emma-Leia and they just call her Emily for short! And she doesn't know that Zach is actually Zachary-Luke, her brother!

The minute I read "a series of chilling events," I thought: "Refrigerators in a Row -- a Series of Chilling Events." Fridge -- chill -- get it?

Or here are some country-western versions of titles :

"You can't destroy my mind because I lost it a long time ago."

"My life's like cheese that you've just shredded."

"Is there a scarlet letter X on my heart that you're aimin' at?"

"I don't have a butler, so I did it myself."

Hmm, those are a bit long. You need something short and sweet that sticks in your mind (assuming you have one.)

Something Creepy This Way Comes

See Emily Run

Newly Wed and Nearly Dead (Or Nearly Wed and Newly Dead)

My Fiance's Heart Has His Reasons

Tell Me No Ly's


Resurrect Me When It's Over

Marriage's The Word

The Old Curious Fiance Shop

All's Fair in Lovin' Wards

Murder on the Fiance Express

To Kill A Ramsay Bird

Battering Ramsay

Z for Zach, D for Dead

Nope, I'm no good at this, either.

At 7/03/2008 8:46 AM, Blogger Kerry Blair said...

No good? Frankly, Melanie, I think you're brilliant! I'm so glad I read your comment to start my day. :)

At 7/03/2008 10:52 AM, Blogger Pat said...

Hysterical Melanie!

At 7/03/2008 12:30 PM, Blogger Annette Lyon said...

Accidental Madness.

Okay, that's totally lame. I've never been good at titles, which is why I don't bother with working titles.

But I want a copy of The Believer (already have Fool Me Twice) so I had to come up with SOMETHING! :)

At 7/03/2008 12:58 PM, Blogger Evil HR Lady said...

I love "I didn't have a butler so I did it myself." I would totally buy that book.

At 7/03/2008 3:39 PM, Blogger Worldbuilder Robin said...

Wait, Harry doesn't die???

Okay, how about simple, one word titles like:


Um, that's all I've got in that category. I'm thinking something about the frozen past being torn, or pictures of the past being ripped, or something.

Opening Old Wounds
Shards of the Past
Torn Pictures

(can you tell that this kind of stuff isn't the genre I usually work in?)

At 7/04/2008 11:25 AM, Blogger Stephanie Black said...

I am totally loving these title suggestions, both the serious and hilarious. Thank you, everyone!

At 7/05/2008 2:13 AM, Blogger Marta O. Smith said...

How about "Dangerous Obsession." It's right there in the blurb.


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