What’s in a Name?

What’s in a Name?

"The moment that counts most for me is the one that precedes reading. At times a title is enough to kindle in me the desire for a book that perhaps does not exist." – Italo Calvino

My last blog post – about my latest revision of Straightville, U.S.A. – contained the following nugget of information:

So I’m happy to say that I sent the latest revision (I think it’s number 1 gazillion) to my agent for his review last weekend. And now I’m waiting again to see what he thinks, because this is the most drastic revision of them all. And this waiting is still the same invigorating, nerve-wracking, nail-biting feeling it has always been.

I heard back from my agent, Steve, a few days later, and thankfully he liked what I’d done. Steve has been in this business a while and worked as an editor on projects like Brent Hartinger’s Geography Club before stepping into his agent role. So when he gives advice, I listen. He always backs up his suggestions with the fact that this is my book and I can basically take or leave his thoughts. I always take them, though. He’s yet to hit me with anything that I haven’t thought makes my work better.

So, I then did ANOTHER revision! Above I say that the previous draft was the most drastic revision of them all. But I’m going to strike that and call this current version the most drastic of changes. In fact, I’ve even changed the title, as you’ll notice in the header above – next to that ultra-hipster looking photo of me.

So what was Straightville, U.S.A. is now Welcome to Straightville, and I prefer it that way based on what transpires in this current version of the story. [Fun fact: that’s actually the third title this book has carried, but I’m not going to get into all that.]

As I mentioned in that last post, this project is now five years old, but I’m looking at it in a whole new light. I’ve read about authors who revisit their early projects and wish they could change things. I totally get that. While this book has had its ups and downs, I’m glad it has taken so much time to find a publishing home. It’s much stronger because of it.

You can read the new and improved description of Welcome to Straightville on my Books page. It’ll go out to publishers for review soon, and we’ll see if anybody bites.

Fingers and toes crossed!

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