In talking to my husband about my WIPs I find myself constantly clarifying which project I’m talking about as the conversation progresses. This is because most of the time a title is one of the last things that comes. It’s like naming a baby. You want to get it absolutely right otherwise your kid is going to be stuck with a stupid name like Nevaeh or Destiny (no offense if you were unfortunate enough to be named one of these things by your parents, it’s not your fault, but if you’re considering these names for your baby for the love of all that is holy, we have enough strippers).
So I’ve decided to give my WIPs names. Not their real names, not titles, but something I can use to talk about them in the meantime, to help keep them straight without using a string of modifiers. Sort of like when people name their baby before it’s born—before they know if the little fetus is a boy or a girl, or just because they can’t decide on a name. My husband’s little sister was Elvis for nine months before she got her real name. We had some friends whose little boy was called Spark Plug.
And while names like that are goofy it’s easier than saying “he or she” or “it” or “the baby” all the time. Also it’s more fun. So in the grand tradition of goofy fetus names I’m announcing the names of my current WIPs.
Right now I’m drafting on a YA sci-fi thriller that takes place in Santiago. I’m thinking of calling him Pinochet because of the massive oppression by the government in the book. Also I think I’m going to feel super liberated when I finally crank out Pinochet, because then I’ll get to start plotting on an idea I’ve got floating around in my head.
My other WIP actually has a title, but when I talk about it I always refer to it as The Fox. It’s MG revisionist history that takes place in Napoleonic Europe. I love The Fox, but I’m thinking that it’s going to take a lot more research before it’s anywhere near ready for beta readers.
So there you go. Pinochet and The Fox. For your pleasure.