Monday, April 02, 2012

Titles R Us

In a previous post, I clued you in to my excitement over playing a small behind-the-scenes roll in the third book of the brilliant series that begins with...


Now I'll tell you what prompted that email to Tom Angleberger where I so kindly handed him the idea behind his latest book. It was due to major frustrations we were having with the title of my soon-to-be-released book.

When Carolyn Mackler and I were writing The Future of Us, we were calling it It's About Time, though we knew that would probably change. For months, our publisher had been tossing alternate titles our way, and we'd toss back other ideas. Sometimes they loved a title that we didn't love, or we'd love a title that they didn't love. And sometimes we'd love a title, send it to them, and then send a quick follow-up email saying, "We have no idea what we were thinking. That's a horrible title!"

I started taking famous phrases that dealt with time or change or seeing the future, and I'd substitute rhyming words. For example, with the term fortune cookie, here's what went down in my brain:

"Let's see, we could have a fortune bookie, or a fortune hookie, or a fortune lookie. Or, hey! This is funny. We could have a fortune Wookiee. Hmm... That'd work better as an Origami Yoda book. Maybe I'll pass that along to Tom. Okay, now where was I?"

A short time later, if you flipped to the Acknowledgements page of the second Origami Yoda book...


...you'd find this...



And last week, finally, one of the big news items in the children's publishing world dealt with the title and cover reveal of this much-anticipated book...


Yes, I kept that secret for almost a year!

Want to see another cool part of this story? When I met Tom at ALA last summer, he gave me something that will maintain a very special place within my literary memorabilia: a prototype Fortune Wookiee!

4 comments:

Claire Dawn said...

That's amazing! The writers' network strikes again. :)

Carrie Monroe said...

That is awesome. My friend's son loves these books.

Anonymous said...

Hi, I am doing a research on you, because you are my FAVORITE author. I am reading your book Thirteen Reasons Why for the 12 time. And I was wondering if you hade anything that would be cool to include? Thank you!

Mr Schell said...

Hi I'm Mr Schell (also acknowledged in Darth Paper). Love the Fortune Wookie idea. Going to check out your books too!!