A Pretty Silly Name

Currently the series of stories that I’m working on go under the title Werewolves On A Train.

I don’t like that.

It feels silly. Silly and cheap. It also sounds way too close to Snakes On A Plane, which I haven’t even seen. It’s got the wrong ring to it, and I want to change it.

Coming up with a good name for a series is difficult. Actually, coming up with a new name for anything is difficult. I’ve had to do it twice already:

  • Toini was originally called Toivo, and then I learned that Toivo was a male name, and it didn’t feel right for a female character anymore.
  • The Anfylk race was originally called Hobbits, but I changed that once I learned that the word hobbit is trademarked.

Both times were difficult. Just accepting that I had to change the name was hard. Coming up with a new name too, and finally getting used to the new name. All tricky.

Chances are I’ll keep thinking of my current story as Werewolves On A Train, or WOAT, for a long time after I decide on a new name for it. I guess it’s just how the mind works. We get used to things and we don’t like them changing.

So what other ideas do I have?

  • Dreamchasers. This is good in that it’s descriptive. Roy is chasing his dream of being with Toini. Alene is chasing a dream, even though she’s not quite sure what it is. It’s good in that respect, but as a word it carries a lot of expectations that just aren’t met by the story. I probably won’t go with this.
  • The Old Dog’s Last Hunt. This is a much more fitting title than the above, but it feels long and unwieldy. Roy is the “old dog” and he’s chasing something. Once he catches it he hopes to settle down and take it easy. The issue, apart from being unwieldy is that “last hunt” carries a certain finality. When a hero goes on their last hunt it’s not because he’s decided to stop hunting and settle down – it’s because he dies.
  • Dog and Fish. This is the hip and mysterious title. “Dog” is a reference to Roy being a werewolf, and that should be pretty obvious. What’s less obvious is that “fish” is a reference to Alene. She’s also a shapeshifter, but changes into a rainbow coyote which is a doglike animal with fish scales. It’s a mysterious title for sure, but that may not necessarily be a good thing.
  • EDIT: Lost Dogs or Lost Dogs’ Journey. This came to mind today, and while I’m not completely sold on it yet, it feels like it will work. In my mind, the word dog has grown to become word people use for therianthropes (shapeshifters/werewolves) in the setting of the story. It’s also god symbolically as both Roy and Alene are a little bit lost in the world. I’m liking it.

Those are the ones I could remember at the time of writing. I know I’ve had more ideas, but they’re either too similar to the ones above, or bad enough that I forgot about them (that’s usually how I treat forgotten ideas).

A Pretty Silly Name

2 thoughts on “A Pretty Silly Name

  1. ‘Snakes on a Plane’ was originally a working title, but it ended up sticking. It’s so straight-forwardly descriptive that it works on a nice ironic level. ‘Werewolves on a train’ would be doubly-ironic, given the nod to ‘Snakes on a Plane’. I presume you’re not looking for an ironic title, though.

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