Sunday, August 23, 2009


Two more Quin and Morgan mysteries are virtually complete. I'm wrestling with which should go next. One is more in the thriller genre, taking Miranda to Easter Island and Morgan to Baffin Island, before they meet half way through, back in Toronto, to resolve plot complexities with international implications. The other is closer to a British drawing room mystery, set in Toronto and Muskoka cottage country, but with resonance connecting the quirky members of a Society devoted to Shakespeare's contemporary, Francis Bacon, to a much larger world. Both still feature Quin and Morgan!
Titles seem to take as much time and thought as re-writes. Getting just the right one that will attract new readers, not put off familiar readers, and sum up the novel without giving too much away, is a daunting task.
For the thriller, I've tried Crimes of the Early Morning (too artsy), Killing People Is Wrong (too whimsical), Murder Casts a Long Shadow (too melodramatic). I think I've settled on The Gibraltar Coordinates (intriguingly enigmatic, I hope).
For the drawing room mystery, I think I've settled on The Dead Scholar. I've tried a lot of others, including Dead Reckoning (my publisher thinks it's too common, although it has only been used once, in 2005, and once in 1978), and, my favourite, A Goodly Huge Cabinet (an allusion to Bacon's notion that all informed people should have a "cabinet of curiosities" to keep the souvenirs of their lives for safekeeping—too esoteric). And others, as they say, too numerous to mention.
Now, I need to decide, which comes next, after the psychological emphasis of Still Waters and the gothic play in Grave Doubts??

1 comment:

  1. Hmmm. My vote would be for the British drawing room mystery - though I can't wait to read more about Quin and Morgan.