As I prepare to publish my book of short stories, I am taken by the decisions I need to make. With all the writing, story selection, updates with my editor and revisions, I’m still in the midst of trying to get the title of my book. I’ve mulled over a few.
Exits and Entrances was the working title of the book for a while. The subtextual theme that ran through each essay embodies that feeling of people who come and go in your life. I decided not to go through with it because there are a few literary works out there with the same name.
Another title was The Gentlest Tide, which touched upon the concept of ocean waves featured in the last story of the collection. Yet, I felt it to be a weak title, more sublime for the middle of a lyric, as it originally was taken from part of a song by Jeff Tweedy and Wilco called “On and On and On”.
Stuck Between Stations was on the board for a while, since the characters in the stories are suspended in moments that define them. However, the word “stuck” felt like a negative one.
But the word “Flight” is important. Each story encompass the concept of fantasy and flight. A traffic reporter helicopter crash, a time machine built in a back yard, disembodied spirits who’ve inhabited earth, yet departed for another journey – these concepts pervade in this collection. Some characters are directly based on real people, others are fictional beings inspired by loved ones who, either living or dead, have provided an essence for these verbal tales of the material and spiritual world.
The last working title I gave this book was Navigating Flight. It felt right at the time, until I realized the title makes the book sound like a aviation handbook. Yet, It felt right enough for me to pass along to my friend Heather, a wonderful artist who created a mock up cover that blew me away. It’s tricky to post the photo here. It almost looks like a promotion for my forthcoming book – with the wrong title. The photo is not approved for official print, but the spirit is pure and the paper airplane shows a playful yet dreamy action, floating with the current against the last embers of sunlight.
Book naming and cover designs are so important, yet challenging for a first time self publishing writer. Whatever the name of the book will be, I want it to have enough power to entice a reader, with a cover that defines the ethereal feel of the subject matter within. Onward and upward! Another week of work on this!