nichepoetryandprose

poetry and prose about place

a name for a novel – biking log book Day #8

with 18 comments


Biking, biking, biking!!!  I am still working on Phase 3 of my virtual bike trip through central France.  For Phase 3 of my trip, I am biking in 12 days from Exireuil to Magné just west of Niort.

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On March 4, for the second biking day in a row, my bike trip was along a railroad track!

Day 8 map

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I had lots of time to think, so I thought about the title of the novel I have been working on.  For those of you who do not know about my novel, it is about a woman who sets out to save an abandoned church.

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On Day #6 of my virtual bike trip, in Chavagné on the Route de la Mothe, I saw an old church…

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old church

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At first, I thought the roof had been removed from this church, leaving it open to the elements.  On closer look, there is a low-pitch roof in place (note the rafters and clay tiles)…

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old church on the Route de la Mothe

old church on the Route de la Mothe

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However, the image reminded me of another abandoned church I had read about in my research for my book:

‘The Old Church of St. Nidan, in Llanidan, North Wales, is a ruin.  All that is left of this medieval church are the four stone walls of the western wing and its central arcade.  The nineteenth century clergyman Harry Longueville Jones wrote that the church had succumbed to a ‘melancholy fate’.  In 1850, church historian Sir Stephen Glynne wrote that most of the church is ‘open to the skies.’  (partly quoted from Wikipedia, ‘Old Church of St Nidan, Llanidan’, January, 2013).

I think I will use the phrase ‘Open to the Skies’ as the title for my novel.  It refers to the fate of an abandoned church, but also to the ability of people to open themselves up to possibilities.  I think it is perfect for my book.

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Log Book:  March 4, 2013

Area travelled:   from ‘field south of Trévins-le-Bas’ to ‘outskirts of Niort’

Distance:  30 minutes      3.0 km

Best view:  no best views today; biking on the railroad is not inspiring

Notes:    after this, I will be careful to plot my bike trip on roads rather than rails!!!! 

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Distance Travelled Feb 21 to Mar 4: 24.0 km  (240 minutes of stationary biking)

Total Distance Travelled Jan 30 to Mar 4 :  55.8 km  (565 minutes of stationary biking)

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What do you think of the title ‘Open to the Skies’  for my book? 

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Copyright  Jane Tims  2013

Written by jane tims

March 18, 2013 at 7:02 am

18 Responses

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  1. I like the title a lot Jane! When I read the post, one word struck me with a powerful punch, and that word is “ruin”. I’m not sure if that would be incorporated into the title, or a section of the book, but I thought I’d mention it. To some, your fictional church is a ruin, in danger of becoming a ruin, and even perhaps the woman’s desire to save it might (in some people’s minds) ruin it. Just some thoughts.

    I really enjoy your posts. Thank you so much!

    Like

    weedimageoftheday

    March 19, 2013 at 3:54 pm

    • Hi. I don’t think I’ve used the double ‘meaning’ of ruin in the book, so I thank you for this idea. Glad you like the posts! Jane

      Like

      jane tims

      March 19, 2013 at 4:10 pm

  2. How wonderful that your virtual bike trip in France led to the inspiration for a meaningful title for your book, ‘Open to the Skies.’ I hope you get to keep it!

    Like

    Barbara Rodgers

    March 19, 2013 at 10:27 am

  3. I love the title, Jane!

    Like

    Robin

    March 18, 2013 at 5:49 pm

  4. Jane,,,,,I totally love that title..”Open to the skies”,,,I also like “Open to the Heaven”,,,,”Highway to Heaven”,,,whatever you choose,,,it will be the “right” one. Please tell me why an editor could possibly change an authors book title.? Doesn’t seem right to me. Keep up the biking.!

    Like

    patsi

    March 18, 2013 at 1:56 pm

    • Hi Patsi. Thanks for your vote of confidence! Editors are usually good at what they do… they know their book audiences and know what readers like (what sells). An editor, seeing potential in a book, will request many changes. Part of the challenge of being a writer is to acknowledge that a writer is not an editor. If changes are requested, the writer has to decide when to go along with the editorial suggestions and when to argue for keeping the book as is. I shall ponder these things as I continue my biking!!!! Jane

      Like

      jane tims

      March 18, 2013 at 2:09 pm

  5. So I like the title but how about Open to the Heaven’s

    Like

    stan spavold

    March 18, 2013 at 11:18 am

    • Hi Stan. That’s a good suggestion. One the front page of my draft novel, there are now four possible titles, and I will add this one! Thanks! Jane

      Like

      jane tims

      March 18, 2013 at 1:41 pm

  6. For your book you need to incorporate a bit of thinking into why these churches are now abandoned. In France and Italy most are now museums, open to the public for donations to help with their upkeep. I can go into it in more detail but the Christian church started in homes, then we built all these churches and spent huge amounts of money building and maintaing them, then churches have lost their way, both from a change in society (these buildings are no longer the center of social life) and from a faith perspective as well. The church dwindles and aging members can no longer afford to keep these buildings in repair. Anyway my point is why did your character want to restore the church, likely for more than the desire to appreciate old buildings. I need more time to explain but you likely know what I mean.

    Like

    stan spavold

    March 18, 2013 at 11:12 am

    • Hi Stan. Thanks for your thoughtful comments. In the case of my book, the congregation has reluctantly admitted that they can no longer afford the upkeep on the old church. A lot of the tension in the book has to do with conflict among the members of the community, some of whom want to see the church made into a community museum. The main character is not a church-goer, and is attracted to the church for its contemplative character (she wants to turn it into a writer’s retreat where writers can feel inspired to write). However, the main character also is looking for hope (her husband is dying) and she is drawn to the church emotionaly and perhaps spiritually. Will the community come to accept the church building in its new role? hmmmm… I’ll send you a copy of the book when it is done… Jane

      Like

      jane tims

      March 18, 2013 at 2:03 pm

  7. Love the title Jane! Divine inspiration 🙂

    Like

    Loree

    March 18, 2013 at 10:30 am

  8. It is a great title, both in the way it refers to the old church and, as you say, to the process of becoming open for personal evolution.

    Like

    Carol Steel

    March 18, 2013 at 8:28 am

    • Hi Carol. Thanks! I understand that no matter what title I choose, if it gets published, the title is often something the editor wants to change. However, it is my choice for now! Jane

      Like

      jane tims

      March 18, 2013 at 9:57 am

  9. Like the title!

    Like

    Pia

    March 18, 2013 at 7:08 am


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