Talking idly about books at book club the other night (shocking, I know!) I suddenly realised that the rules for naming fiction books were really quite simple.
1) Take a poetically evocative noun. Anything will do. 'Fire', 'blood', 'stone', 'night', 'heart', 'Guns', 'Sword', 'Knife', 'Ice', 'Dawn', 'Death', 'Life', 'Jewel', 'Roses', and so on.
2) Take another one. Go on, don't be shy.
3) Combine the two nouns together in some vaguely meaningful way.
Results (and none of these, as far as I'm aware, are real titles, apart from the first one):
Fire in the blood
Roses of the dawn
Sword of ice
And so on. You can be as creative as you want in putting the two nouns together, it doesn't really matter if you make up a new word. ('Nightwatch' or 'Dreamscape', for instance - two words used for Stephen King books). And the actual meaning of the title doesn't really matter - it's point is to give vague significance to what follows in the book, and to sound profound without actually being that way.
Generally speaking, one of the words that is used should be closely related to a verb or adjective, but this is certainly not true in all, or even a majority, of cases. Some examples: 'Riders in the Chariot', 'The Sword in the Stone', 'The Bloody Chamber'. It's a good way of combining a fact with a descriptive or active idea while not diverting too far from the purpose of the title, to imply what's coming and to entice the reader.
Then again, you really have to wonder where some writers get their titles from. A book of short stories by Brian Aldiss on my bookshelf is entitled 'A Tupolev Too Far'. Riiiiiiight....
(The significance of the title to this very post? Only because Maria of Orange Juice Snobbery suggested that I write about book titles in a recent post. She clearly knows my own mind better than I do. Drinking orange juice DOES make you more intelligent, ladies and gentlemen...!)
Tim, your links stink, you fink!
- John Bangsund's Threepenny Planet
- Broken Biro
- Poetry 24
- Superlative scribbles
- Kirstyn McD!
- Rorrim a tsomla almost a mirror
- More Sterne
- Cam the man from the Dan.
- Too hot to Raaaaaaandallllllll!
- Erin's Excellently Everlasting Effervescements!
- Slammy Infamy
- Hail Paco!
- Baron Blandwagon, purveyor of cyberbunnies, hawker of Roger Corman, and Misruler of the Multiverse
- The Bolta. Aiyeeeeee!!!!!
- Bad Apple Audrey
- The cartoon church
- Sir Martinkus
- A Zemblanian abroad and at home
- A hodge podge of hotzeplotz
- THE SLAMMA!
- Jottlesby's nottings, or should that be Nottlesby's jottings?
- The Snarking of the Hunt
- Jazzy Hands
- David of Metal City
- David the Barista
- The Blogger on the Cast Iron Balcony
- Be an Opinion Dominion Minion!
- ... and Fel
- His brilliant career - from whale sushi to crumbed prawn
- Jo Blogs
- Yet another Tim
- Was two peas, now three peas
- ... Still Life - now with extra rotating cats!
- An Amazingly Awesome Australian Ampersand!
- Blink and you'll miss 'er
- Red in the land of the tigers!
- Wire of Vibe
- Chase him, ladies, he's in the cavalry!
- The Non-palindromical Editrix in Germanium
- Old Sterne
- The briefs...
- ... and the brieflets
- The Purple Blog
- Blairville, lair of all that is wicked and perfidious
- The enticingly acronymical CSH
- EXTREEEEEEEME WYNTER!
- Mark of California
- Silent Speaking
- Lexicon the Mexican
- ► 2016 (53)
- ► 2015 (106)
- ► 2014 (135)
- ► 2013 (173)
- ► 2012 (275)
- ► 2011 (261)
- ► 2010 (288)
- ► 2009 (290)
- It's like poetry, sort of
- What you don't see, you can't see hurt you
- Nymphomaniac vows to abstain from Christianity bef...
- Astound your friends with astounding things!
- See you later, procrastinator
- Into the mouth of death he strode
- One liner, in three lines
- Comment on the culture of comment
- That's a funny dunny
- Post about armpits
- Pat squared
- Unannounced spot check
- Amazing diet foods of tomorrow!
- Whoops, sorry mum
- To the Surgeons, to make much of Time
- Drinking orange juice makes you intelligent
- Deadly feathers
- Yes we can't
- Yay! and Neigh!
- Slightly disturbing
- It's all about meme!
- ▼ November (23)
- ► 2007 (392)
- ► 2006 (373)
- ► 2005 (287)