Selah March

December 6, 2005

Of Titles, Tits and Cl…

Filed under: Uncategorized — Selah March @ 10:53 pm
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So PBW posted today about what she dislikes in titles.

She says:

“As a reader, the longer another author’s book title is, the less likely I am to buy the book. Sometimes simply the title wording will nix my interest…jarring titles make me edgy, and depressing-sounding titles chase me away from the shelf, while complicated titles make me suspicious…Then there are the titles that for whatever reason simply irritate the hell out of me. Like the ones that include punctuation (Title!) or try to be cute with symbols (Title & title). Exclamation! Points! Are! Just! Annoying!”

Yikes. Let’s see…keep it short, watch the wording, don’t be jarring, and stay cheerful and simple while avoiding punctuation and ampersands like the clap.

No pressure there.

As it happens, I could strip chrome from a trailer hitch with the way I suck at titles. And I’m in the market for one right now. Remember that erotic/Gothic short I mentioned for the Amber Heat Wave contest?

The original working title was “Come Twilight,” but it doesn’t really capture the whole ‘Gothic’ vibe.

So I considered “The Widow of Merrybourne Hall,” which, on the pro side, is very classically Gothic (see THE BRIDE OF PENDORRIC and anything else written by Victoria Holt), and on the con side, is sort of…I dunno…meh.

So then I considered “The Imp of Merrybourne Hall.” Why? I dunno. BECAUSE, okay? It popped into my head, and it’s not like I’ve FINISHED the story or anything. I could VERY WELL work the concept of an “imp” into the manuscript. Probably not an ACTUAL imp, since I swore this one wouldn’t be a paranormal…but the CONCEPT…

*sigh*

I don’t know. I’ll think on it.

WARNING: The rest of this post? Decidely NC-17 rated. The easily offended may want to head on over to Squawk Radio.

In other, somewhat related news, the Smart Bitches gave us a list of bad, bad romance language.

I agree with almost all of it…

…save for “tits” — which most guys may not say out loud because they value their testicles, but many, many men THINK in their little pea-brains…

…and the ban on the various substitutes for “clitoris.”

Because honestly, folks…not many humans, prior to the latter half of the 20th century, are going to call THAT little bit of anatomy by its proper name. So if you’re using Deep Point of View ™, and every scene is depicted through the eyes of your viewpoint character, it’s damned inconvenient to be told you can’t use “bud” or “pearl” or any one of a handful of other references more appropriate than the proper Latin term that, for example, a 15th century handmaiden to the royal Princess simply wouldn’t know.

I understand the euphemisms get old. I’ll do my best to come up with some new ones. But I’m not going to put words in my character’s mouth or in her mind she couldn’t use even if she wanted to.

Defensive? No, why do you ask? :p

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