Friday, July 30, 2010

From Emily Bryan . . .

You can't copyright a title. Good thing. Otherwise two of my Chatelaine buddies would have to duke it out right here. Both Joy Nash and Jennifer Ashley (writing as Alyson James) are up for Rita's at RWA Nationals.

And though you can't see it from the cover at right, the title for Jennifer's novella is A Little Night Magic. Very close, but not identical to Joy's contemporary offering A Little Light Magic.

I love both these titles because they sing to me. And maybe because they remind me of Mozart's Eine Kleine Nachtmusik (A Little Night Music). It's a charming minuet and trio for two violins, viola and cello. Every note is exactly as it should be (sort of like every well-chosen word in Joy and Jenn's writing!) and when I listen to Mozart I am reminded that there is truth and beauty in the world.

I'm a music major, in case you couldn't guess. Not everyone would make that connection with these titles. But obviously readers respond to them. Other than the obvious observation that both Joy and Jenn are excellent writers, I think the reason these titles work is because of the rhythm inherent in the syllables themselves. Long-short-short-long-short-short.

The strength of Hemingway's writing isn't in his word choices. It's in the rhythm his words create, separate from their meaning. Jenn and Joy have discovered the power of words as percussion in these award winning titles.

Good luck, girlfriends. I hope you both win on Saturday!


librarypat July 30, 2010 at 9:57 PM  

I read Joy's book and enjoyed it. As much as I enjoy anthologies, I haven't yet gotten that one. Best of luck to all who are up for awards Saturday night.

EmilyBryan August 1, 2010 at 7:51 AM  

I love Joy's writing. Her Druids of Avalon are terrific, but I also enjoy her contemporary voice as well.

I confess I've only read Jennifer's historicals (and adored them!) I need to give her Alyson James works a try. She so prolific and so gifted in every subgenre she tackles.

Cindy Holby

Gerri Russell

Joy Nash

Bonnie Vanak

Emily Bryan

C.L. Wilson

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