Preparing for publication – edits and titles

Now that October’s here again, I’ve found myself looking back over the last twelve months.

This time in 2013, I was on the point of submitting my novel, Anna in the Works, to Choc Lit. Around five months after that, they emailed to say their reading panel had liked it. I was at work at the time, and had to remove myself for several minutes so I could bounce around without being seen. Choc Lit invited me down to London to discuss a possible contract, and I flapped about being on time, with the result that I arrived an hour early. (I went to look round the National Gallery whilst I waited, but failed to appreciate the artworks, due to nerves.)

The train journey back from London was amazing for me, and probably highly irritating for anyone sharing the same carriage. I called one or two people. My phone battery ran down.

After that came a feeling of unreality. Except I had the contract, and could peer at it whenever I liked.

There were periodic bouts of activity that made things seem slightly more believable, including the very exciting article in The Bookseller about my publishing deal. And then I got to meet several Choc Lit authors at the RNA summer party. I found I’d joined a really supportive and close-knit community.

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Some book titles just work. I bet Lulu’s titlescorer would love these…

And now, things are starting to seem very real indeed. I’ve completed my first set of edits, relating to plot and characterisation, and am expecting my line and copy edits shortly. Meanwhile, I gather that Anna in the Works may also get a new title before it comes out. It’s probably just as well. I knew making such a bad pun was a bit sinful really. Not changing it would just encourage me. Up until the reality check, I’d been considering using An Inconvenient Ruth for a follow-up story…

The question of the title made Choc Lit author Evonne Wareham’s recent post very pertinent. In fact, for anyone currently deciding what to call their novel, here’s a selection of interesting pages I’ve found:

Although I’m emotionally attached to my story, I find I don’t feel that way about the title. I shall be really interested to hear the alternative options.

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8 thoughts on “Preparing for publication – edits and titles

  1. Interesting process isn’t it?!!! Titles are a challenge – Sugar and Spice’s original name was The Way to a Hero’s Heart but works better with the snappier title.

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  2. Such an exciting time, Clare – I remember the elation following my initial interview too. Congratulations and here’s wishing you every success with… well, whatever the title turns out to be! (PS Follow A Star wasn’t my original title – but I much prefer it now to my working title!)

    Liked by 1 person

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