Genre-Crossing and The Edge of Memory

I have struggled a bit with developing the pitch for my novel, since it doesn’t fit easily into a single category. I had lunch with an English teacher friend who’s just finished reading and asked her what she thought about genres.

“Well, it’s sort of a romantic, psychological thriller,” she said.

“With paranormal elements.”

She snorted her iced tea. “Yes, but you tread so lightly there I think you can safely avoid mentioning it.”

“I think the best fit category is Upmarket Women’s Fiction.”

“Well, whatever it is, it’s gripping.”

So there you have it.

We also discussed the new title, and I explained the reservations I had with the former working title “Still Haunted” which were:

  1. It falsely led people to expect a balls-out ghost story, whereas the ghost elements were subtle and late in the novel
  2. By the end, the protagonist is not really so haunted anymore.

My friend suggested “Still Haunted.  Until Recently.” as an alternate title. 

I prefer “Up to a Short While Ago, Quite, Quite Haunted”

Maybe I should try that title for my next queries. 


Well, after much (much!) painful deliberation…

and much nagging of test readers and even folks who have not read my book, there seems to have emerged a preference among the recent title front-runners.

Edge Cover

So, I should begin querying in earnest soon. I sent off a couple of e-queries last week under my previous title of “Still Haunted” also, so we’ll see where that gets me.

It’s officially spring and it’s Easter, so it seems a good day for a new beginning and a new title. 🙂

Title Talk, Again, Again

Well, no worries, Clara. teehee.gif My romance with “Tied to the Tracks” turned out to be a one-night stand.snort.gif

I’ve got a few other new options. A long list anyway. My husband’s current favorite is:

Forgotten, Not Forgiven

We’ll see if I hate myself in the morning. rollingonfloor.gif

Title Talk, Again.

Well, still not satisfied with my working title, I am now in deep smit with a new alternative.

Tied to the Tracks

Whatcha think? popcorn.gif

If you were looking for jugglers, I’d have been a juggler.

Well, I am dangerously close to trying to query. I’ve picked out 5 agents to start with. I’ve researched them and composed letters for each one.

But I still struggle with what to call my book. I honestly think it could be marketed in a number of different ways, and I’m not sure which is the most effective.

I’m going with Upmarket Commercial Fiction for the moment, so I’ve chosen agents who are interested in representing that category. If I don’t find a good agent match this way, I’ll try marketing as something else. Even as a juggler. teehee.gif

Incidentally, I am a juggler. The pool was double-booked for swim class in my junior year of high school, so I spent 6 weeks learning juggling instead (there was very limited equipment available). Your tax dollars at work. snort.gif


After an inordinate amount of stalling, I have finally made the changes to Chapter 19.


That was the editing I was dreading the most.


Hopefully, the rest will go quickly now!

In other news, another new edition of toying with titles:


More Playing Around

I’m so stalling. It’s not even funny. hide.gif

I’ve had all day where I could have edited Chapters 18 and 19 (apart from a brief skirmish with work), but instead I’ve touched up other chapters, done global word searches, researched agents– done everything BUT edit the next two chapters.

Chapter 19 will be the biggest edit I need to do. And I’m not sure what I want to do with it. So I keep avoiding it.

To prove my case beyond a shadow of a doubt, I offer this into evidence. I present Exhibit A:

Alternate Cover Design

I am toying with titles, flap copy, and covers again. So sue me. snort.gif

After a fashion…

Editing is weird. I’ve been doing a lot of it lately. I’ve heavily revised the language and descriptions through the first 17 chapters now (almost halfway through the book).

You write something and, at the time, it seems pretty good. You go back later and it’s like looking at your prom photo. “Really? I thought that was cool?” rolleyes.gifrollingonfloor.gif

I have recently trimmed a lot from the second chapter (which was something like the fourth run through, although the first few times were intentionally not major edits). I now find my previous version humiliating. Like the oversized, plastic framed glasses I wore at thirteen.

Why should this matter? It shouldn’t. But I’d submitted the first 3 chapters to a contest last month (which is why I’d revised those chapters before my major edit).

I’m now cringing, knowing that someone is reading that earlier version– despite the fact that many people liked it the way it was.

But there’s not a durned thing I can do about that. And who knows, I may revise again later and hate the version I’ve got right now. teehee.gif

I am still toying with title ideas. I’m recently really digging “Flashing Past”, but I’m not sure if that’s intriguing enough for people to pick up in the first place. I came up with “Long Way Baby” on the way home from a lecture today. And I’m sure I’ll have more ideas as time goes by.

OH! And I woke up with an idea for a short story today. That’s never happened to me before. I have lots of novel-length ideas, but rarely a quickie. So, I might crank that out when I get tired of editing.

Keepin’ on Keepin’ on

So a few little things to report.

First of all, I’ve joined a critiquing website that was recommended by someone I did NaNoWriMo with a couple of months ago. And I have my first chapter up for review this week. I already have had 4 lovely reviews written– the most so far of anyone else in the “newbie queue”, so that is encouraging that my story is interesting enough for someone to start reading.

So, yay!


Also, I am working on a top-secret project for my test readers. So look for that to roll out sometime next week, I think. 😉

In other news, work has been crazy busy, so between that and the holidays, my husband’s birthday and whatnot, I have not had much time to edit yet. And it’s driving me batty. But I think that’s a good thing… I am really itching to work on it, and I feel like the changes I’ve made so far are really improving things.

For the record, I have revised the revision of the first 3 chapters, too. teehee.gif

I would really like to get through the major revision in the next month or so, and then maybe print my personal copy. I would like to hold it novel-sized in my hand and read through it again that

Overall, I am slowly plugging away. type.gif

If anyone reading this could comment on the alternate title options, I would appreciate it. 🙂


You might have noticed I regrouped a bit. The test reader pages are now lumped together on one tab, and all the book-related pages are linked from one tab also.

There is also a discussion page for title options, since some folks have suggested I change it.

Happy New Year, everyone!