Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Title Smarties...

(My daughter made this larger than life box of Smarties in an art class this year...Very nice, K!)
The results are in...On Saturday I entered The Slushpile Slut's  Next Top Title Blogfest.  It was a lot of fun and I met some great new people and got some really interesting information about two of my manuscripts' titles.

My middle grade historical fiction novel is about two girls who survive the Blitz in London (WWII) and are evacuated to a village in the countryside.  The titles I considered were: A TEMPORARY HOME, EVERYONE DID THEIR PART, AND NOT A HOLIDAY.  EVERYONE DID THEIR PART was my original title and it got zero votes.  I was totally shocked.  A TEMPORARY HOME came in second and although I really like this title, my teenage daughter said it sounds like a modern foster care story.  So the New title and one I love is; NOT A HOLIDAY.  I really think it sounds English and tells a lot about the story.  Children were told that their evacuation would be like a holiday and that they would have adventures while they were  out of harms way.  For some children it was a better life than what they had in the slums of London and Manchester, but for others that was not true. 

The rhyming picture book is about a little girl (or could be a boy depending on the illustrations) that bakes an over the top cake.  The three titles I put up were: A CAKE I WILL BAKE, CAKE FOR TWO, AND THE CAKE CHALLENGE.  A CAKE I WILL BAKE was the resounding winner and my original title.  CAKE CHALLENGE came in second.  I think I will stick with A CAKE I WILL BAKE, my only concern is that they are also the first words in the book. 

WHAT DO YOU THINK???  Is that okay?

During the Next Top Title Blogfest I had the opportunity to meet about 30 new to me bloggers.  Clara was one of them.  She is a YA (young adult) fantasy writer.  She has a wonderful blog.  One of her recent posts was an interview with one of her characters Timas...Very cool!

These are the rules...but let's face it, I'm a Harley girl and I don't always follow the rules...

1. Thank and link back to the person who gave you this award. (done)
2. Share 7 things about yourself. (done)
3. Pass the award along to 15 bloggers who you have recently discovered and who you think are fantastic for whatever reason!  (done)
4. Contact the bloggers you've picked and let them know about the award. (working on it)

Seven Things About Me:
1. I was born just outside of London, England and moved to the States when I was 8.
2. I'm trying to be a go with the flow Harley chick.  (Not so easy for a spreadsheet kind of girl...)
3. I've had numerous personal hand written rejections.  (Which tells me to keep on writing.)
4. I belong to two critique groups: The WAD and Mark One. (Check out my sidebar to meet some of my buddies.)
5. I love to tube!
6. I truly believe that one can NOT host a party without a cheese tray!
7. I'm a mostatarian. I eat mostly vegetables, but do eat fish, eggs, and seafood.

Vicki Rocho- aspiring writer
Valerie-who writes about politics, modern culture and anything else controversial
Terri  Tiffany- inspirational writer
Sandy Shin-YA writer and book reviewer
Tahereh-YA author (and my daughter's favorite blogger)
Roland Yeoman-writer
Niki-aspiring writer
Lydia Kang-doctor and writer
Kathi Peterson-romance writer
Jen Blom-mg writer
Janet Johnson-ya and mg writer (lover of fairytales)
Jeff King-aspiring writer for adults
Jennifer Daiker-aspiring author
Houston Knight-romance writer
Catherine-writer, photographer, animal lover
Angela Ackerman-chapter book, mg, ya author

I know this is a lot of links...That's why I broke it down into what people write about...This way you can hunt down the bloggers you have something in common with.  :)


P.S. I'm only 813 people away from having a 1,000 followers! Can you believe it? I'm totally stoked and have been thinking of what to do to celebrate when I'm 800 followers away from 1,000. Well, we've come up with a plan...My daughter (now a high school freshman) and I decided to have a Really Random Prize of EPIC proportion! It's going to be sooooo (I could add more o's) much fun for you, me and a committee of judges....


  1. Thanks for the award! You are too sweet!

    I have to agree with the two titles that everyone picked. After looking through the list, they are the ones I would have picked too!

  2. I haven't had a Smarties in so long, now I'm craving one!

    I love A Cake I Will Bake, and think it's a good idea to repeat it in the first line. The young set will really go for the repetition.

    And a big Congrats on your Award!

  3. The two titles that won would have been the two I selected! I think it's okay to have the first line repeated for the title, it's a cute title, can't help when it works! Sounds like a book I'd read to my children!

    Thank you so much for this fabulous award! I've seen several people receiving this one and I'm thankful I have one now!

  4. Hi Sharon .. the smarties box is great - clever daughter!

    Hope the Cake I Will Bake does really well.

    All the best - Hilary

  5. Lydia--Thanks for dropping in. I'm glad you agree...Titles are almost as hard as query letters.

    Joanne--Thanks, I'm glad you think it is okay...I've been a bit worried about it. The next time I go to England I'll bring back some English sweets to do a give a-way with.

    Jen--Aww...You'd read it to your kids. (blushing and beaming at the same time)

    Hilary--We like to think she's bright and creative. She has more words written on her novel than I do on mine! I'm going to start composing my query letter for A CAKE I WILL BAKE later this week. :)

    Thanks for stopping in everyone!

  6. Aw, thanks so much! I like your books titles, especially the 'not a holiday' one. I think that one is a great hooky title.

    You're daughter's quite the artist--I had to look pretty close to see it wasn't an actual Smarties container. :) And coconut M & Ms? I MYST HAVE THOSE! I hope they come to Canada soon.

    Thanks again for the sweet award!

    Angela @ The Bookshelf Muse

  7. I've not heard of smarties. Are they medicine? If so, I know lots of humans that I would like to get some for...just sayin'. I like A Cake I Will Bake, sort of sets the expectation. Great award and I enjoyed learning more about you.

  8. Congratulations on the award, enjoyed your list...Good book title, I do like it better; best of luck with Not A Holiday....Have a fun day.

  9. omg thanks so much for the award!! AND CONGRATS BEING ONLY 813 FOLLOWERS AWAY FROM 1000!!

    that's REMARKABLE :D



  10. Ooo smarties! I think don't worry that the title A Cake I Will Bake' is repeated on the first page - repetition is good for that age range. Sounds fab to me! And congrats all who got the award! Must admit I am stumped on 'you love to tube' - is that you like to travel on tube trains? :)

  11. I think it's so awesome that you were born in England! And I think your title is a great one. :)

    And thank you for giving me the award!

  12. I love the title NOT A HOLIDAY. It's perfect. As is A CAKE I WILL BAKE. Yay for the blogfest!

    I was born in Brighton and move to the US when I was 11 (just turned 11). :)

  13. Thanks for the award! (I'm at work, shhhh, don't tell. I promise I'll be right back to it in a second!)

    Oh, I LOVE LOVE LOVE smarties! I used to rummage through the kids' Halloween candy confiscating the Smarties. Now, we just give them out so I can have the leftovers! hahahaha.

    (I think it's fine if the title of your book appears in the first few sentences of the book.)

  14. I love that Smarties box!
    That blogfest is such a great idea to get feedback on titles!

  15. I can't believe I missed your blogfest entry. Huh. Anyway, I agree with the majority.

    Congrats on your award, and to your recipients as well. :)

  16. Angela--I was so impressed with K's art project. It is about two feet with a diameter of 5 inches. I hope that you get coconut m & ms too. :)

    Brian--Smarties are a chocolate with a candy coating. They are kind of like m & ms, but have a different flavor. They hae no artificial color in them.

    Jacqueline--Thanks, I'm glad you like the title. :) You have a good week too!

    Tess--For sure!

    Tahereh-I'll tell her she'll be tickled!

    Jayne--Thanks for stopping in. :) I hope you come back...

    I like to ride an inner tube at the lake. I can't ski and won't try wake boarding, but I don't mind being pulled around on a tube all day long.

    Sandy--You are welcome. I enjoy reading your blog and your comments on mine.

    Stina--No Way! My grandparents live in Little Hampton. My other grandparents used to live in Slough and we would go to Brighton to the beach...

    Vicki--I won't tell! I can't wait to see what your mystery prize is going to be...Oh wait are you going to tell everyone or just the winner???

    Kelly--I'm so impressed with K's art! I have it in the livingroom on a speaker. Have a great week!

  17. Thx a lot... you never fail to inspire me.

  18. Hi!!

    Yay!!! Not a Holiday and Cake I will Bake!! are your titles. I think I chose them too - I do think they are fab titles really and truly - GOOD LUCK with the WIPs that go with them.

    Congratulations with your award!! Yay!!! I have no idea what no. 5 means but it souds like fun! LOL!

    have a lovely Tuesday.
    take care

  19. DL--check out Susan Field's blog she has a list of upcoming blogfests.

    Jeff--Then my mission is done for the day. :) Well, except for the ironing, the laundry, the dusting and the writing...

    Jennifer--You'll probably die laughing at this...My husband drags me behind the boat about 30 miles an hour on an inner tube attached to a long rope...the goal is to stay on the tube... (Yep, I'm really a wild woman.)

  20. Sharon!

    OMG! Thank you for the wonderful award! You're such a sweetie!

    I'll get it post in a few weeks on my blog and pass it on!

    Big hugs.

  21. I love learning more about my blogger friends! THank you for thinking of me!!

  22. Thanks for the award, Sharon! Love getting these. I'll make sure to find a good home for it. :)

  23. I don't think it's a problem at all. And I love A Cake I Will Bake, glad you stuck with that!

  24. Love the smartees :o) and love seafood!! yum! Thanks for the award XX

  25. Congrats on your award! And I'm not a picture book writer, but I think it's totally okay for the title to be the same as the first line. Why not?

  26. Ah I see! In that case I think I'd 'love to tube' too. Thanks for explaining! :)

  27. Hi Sharon! Thank you so much for the award ~ you are sweet! Mostaterian ~ that's funny ~ I think that's what I am. And you are right ~ every party does need cheese! :)

    I will follow up on my award in a few days ~ thank you so much again!

    Have a Happy Day Sharon!
    xo Catherine

  28. I agree with you about the cheese tray. But I would take it a step further and say no one should have a fridge without cheese in it. That is just tragic!

  29. hi miss sharon! its neat learning more stuff about you. i didnt ever go tubing but i think i could like it a lot. i love the smarties box. it would be soooo cool to have a box full up of smarties that big. ...hugs from lenny

  30. Houston--HAWK...very cool! I just wanted you to know that I am enjoying getting to know you.

    Terri--I think the awards that have little writing assignements with them are fun. :)

    Kathi--You have a wonderful blog and I hope some of my friends hop over and meet you.

    Olivia--Next step...the dreaded query letter!

    Niki--I love them both too! My favorite is a Flake bar. Do you have them? I can only get them at "English" shops (here). We load up on them when we go visit relatives in England.

    Susan--Thanks, it was just something someone said and you know me...I began to worry...

    Jayne--It's even fun when you wipe out...Although I preferr not to.

    Catherine--You are quite welcome. I'm enjoying getting to know you. :)

    Melissa--You are so right! It must be good cheese too, not boring cheese...

    Lenny--Tubing is fun. I think you'd like it, but you have to have a boat driver you really trust.

    I think you'd get an upset tummy if you ate a box of Smarties the size of K's project.

    I hope everyone has a great weekend!

  31. I fully agree with the winning titles! I especially like "A Cake I Will Bake," and I don't think it's a problem at all that it's the first line of a rhyming children's book. It reminds me of Dr. Seuss.

  32. First off, your MG book NOT A HOLIDAY sounds fantastic! I'm a sucker for historical books set during WWII. Secondly, I like the title A CAKE I WILL BAKE, and personally I don't think it matters about the first sentence being the same.

    My mom's side of the family is British and I spent my summers in England as child. Smarties and digestive cookies were by far my favorite treats :)

    And now I'm hungry...

  33. I loved learning these things about you, Sharon! How cool. I didn't know you were born in England, for instance. And since I hail from a former British colony, I've had my fair share of smarties. Sigh and yum.

    And thanks for educating me about what a mostatarian is. I learned something new!