Sunday, December 30, 2012

Novel Nicknames

A long time ago, I read that one of my favorite authors, Steven Brust, gives each of his titles a nickname. For example: 

  • The Rain in Spain (To Reign in Hell)
  • Aw Gee (Agyar)
  • The Kleenex Guards (The Phoenix Guards)

Granted, it's a wiki source, but I've hung out on his website occasionally, and I've seen the nicknames in use. Also, based on personal experience, it seems perfectly plausible.

I knew another writer working on a historical fic. During the course of her research, she agonized over choosing a title, and also finding a historically appropriate name for her hero. Eventually, she chose Gron for her hero, insisting that historical accuracy was more important than whether her reader dissolved into stitches every time the poor bloke's name crossed the page.  Various titles were suggested and rejected. Gron became the inspiration for the working joke title, Gron's Woman, which led quite naturally to Groin's Woman.

I have improvised novel nicknames for own work. My natural tendency is to apply title abbreviations. Thus,  

A Cat's Tale is ACT.  

Learning to Fly, LtF.

I have a paranormal romance title under development, Heart of the Wolf, often referred to as HotW. (What is that W and why is it so hot?)

Hell on High Heels is HoHH.

Obviously, I'm not nearly as clever as Brust. I need better nicknames for my novels...


  1. I do like you and abbreviate. I'm going to have to stop using so many Ts in my titles or I won't be able to tell them apart soon.

    1. Sandra,
      I'm actually fond of titles that begin with 'H'. My list of abbreviations, includes: HM, HOHH, HotW and 'House' (which I've never shortened because it's only one word). :)