A Real Book
“What is REAL?” asked the Rabbit. “Does it mean having things that buzz inside you and a stick-out handle?”
“Does it happen all at once, like being wound up,” he asked, “or bit by bit?”
It doesn’t happen all at once,” said the Skin Horse. “You become. It takes a long time. That’s why it doesn’t happen often to people who break easily or have sharp edges, or have to be carefully kept . . .
You may recognize these words lifted from Margery Williams Bianco’s The Velveteen Rabbit.
Published in 1922, the book is an enduring story, the tale of a stuffed rabbit’s desire to become real through the love of his owner.
Most readers aren’t aware of the author’s daughter, Pamela Bianco, a child prodigy, whose fame as an artist once eclipsed that of her mother, the writer. In The Velveteen Daughter, a work of historical fiction, the author Laurel Davis Huber fashions a story of complex family dynamics told in alternating chapters through the voices of both mother Margery and daughter Pamela.
A Real Title
If you’ve read my posts recently, you are aware of my struggle for a memoir title. I even blogged about it here: Memoir Progress Peaks and Valleys. A title has evolved, just as the book has, and like Huber’s book, it contains the word “daughter.”
Criteria for my title choice:
- Does the title reflect what the story is about?
- Are the title and subtitle broad enough to encompass the entire story?
Mennonite Daughter: The Story of a Plain Girl
(Runner Up) Mennonite Daughter: A Plain Girl Finds Love
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Did your title appear to you in a flash, or evolve slowly over time?
Does all or part of your title appear somewhere in your story?
Have you ever chosen to read a book because of its title?