Renaming a Novel


Well, with my intended release window right around the corner now seems to be as good a time as any to share a few random pieces of information with the world. First, and perhaps most important, is the novel’s name change. While I have called it Someone to Watch Over Me for nearly two and a half years I decided, earlier this week, to rename it Someone to Remember Me. What a difference a word can make. If you’re wondering why I opted to make this change the answer is simple enough: earlier this week my cousin passed away and my mom was  (briefly) hospitalized on New Year’s Eve.

I’ve always been overemotional, often to my detriment. Things scare me too easily; anger me too quickly; silence me abruptly. I sat at my computer in the wake of these events contemplating some fair criticism that had been lobbed at the name: too common, too boring, etc. I rarely cave to criticism so eagerly but the dominoes lined up just right.

The real catalyst came when I asked myself what my novel was actually about. At the end of it, I can safely say that it is filled with people who fear being forgotten. They fear that their emotions, memories, and desires will be lost to time. The worth of their existence invalidated. In short, each of these people wanted someone to remember them. That word, “Remember” slipped right in and slit the throat of “Watch Over” and before I knew it I was jumping to Kindle, Nook, Jutoh and my original manuscript expunging the old name.

I left Someone to Watch Over Me in place on the original manuscript dated May 2009 (The current version is called “Someone to Remember Me 2011 and is superior for a variety of reasons) as a testament to the past. In a way, this novel became Someone to Remember Me as a result of the past few days. What a difference a title makes; in one fell swoop the entire meaning/intention of the novel shifts dramatically.

And also, it just looks and sounds better.

– Brendan