Over the years many of you have asked, “What ever happened to A Haunting Reverence? It was my favorite book of yours.” Well, it went out of print, and I, too, have felt sad about its passing. It was my quietest, most poetic, literary child and may have been the book that was closest to my heart.
So I have decided to reissue it on my own.
But the sad truth is that the title was wrong. Though I loved it, it misled people and was too abstract. I am now choosing between two new titles and I want your help. Please don’t overthink this; just imagine that you are walking down a row of books in a bookstore and you see a spine with one of these titles on it. Which would be more likely to cause you to stop and pull it out for a closer look?
- Echoes of Forgotten Voices
- Whispers of Forgotten Voices
The difference may seem minimal, but it is not. These are the kinds of decisions I make with every sentence I write in every book. They matter in a way that lies far below your conscious response and understanding. Rhythm, texture, unrecognized implications and associations — these are the deep tools a writer employs. Unless you are writing a book primarily to pass on information, in which case clarity matters most, these subterranean decisions with their subconscious implications are the true “stuff” of a book. They are the elements that move it from the mind to the heart.
As to these titles, no matter which I choose, the subtitle will be “Listening to the Lessons of the Land.” But the title, which is what people see and what they refer to, is the “front door” to the book. I need to know which of the two options most makes you want to knock on that door and be welcomed in.
This will be our book, yours and mine, and I will seek your involvement in different ways. But the first issue is the title. You need not write an elaborate response unless you want to. Just write “whispers” or “echoes” in the “Comments” or “Leave a Reply” box at the bottom of the post and send it back. I hope you will take the time to do so. In your own small way you will be helping to author a book that needs to have its quiet voice heard again.