Trying to write a novel without a title overwhelmed me. I was in the process of writing and preparing to publish a novel based on events in the life of my father, W. Lon Hutchison, from his birth in 1907 in Indian Territory, soon to become the state of Oklahoma, to his death in 1971 in Kansas City, Missouri, when the title of my book Life Expectancy abandoned me.
What had I done so far?
And writing is always far… in time, in work, in travel, in research… very far.
I researched on location and in libraries in Oklahoma, Kansas, Missouri, the National Archives, Kansas City, Missouri, Oakland, and San Francisco, California.
I wrote and rewrote chapter by chapter with feedback from a monthly writers’ group. I researched small independent publishers of fiction in the USA who accept queries. I was ready to start my blog and send the queries.
When I lost the title Life Expectancy (because it had already been used by best-selling author Dean Koontz), I came to a full stop.
I had to change the title and lost confidence in the book project. The project no longer a part of me and what I was doing. The book felt removed, intellectualized. The writing not good enough for me to continue so better to drop it. The blogs I had drafted were in disarray and out of sequence. My life and thoughts moved on but I had not brought the book and the blogs along with me.
Has this happened to you?
How did you get unstuck?
How will I find a title and the energy to restart this book project?
Did you have difficulty with a title?
How important is a title to a book project?
Your comments are most welcome.