Enter title here

February 10, 2012

As the morning tips into the afternoon I have, as yet, nothing to report other than that my cat has a bout of cystitis and now hates me for dragging her to the vet in the slushy snow. Other than giving me the cold shoulder, she is in fine spirits now but I think it will take me a little longer to recover from the snarling Alsatian with a taste for frightened cat.

I hate going to the vet. It’s distressing for everyone involved. Plus, the vets’ waiting rooms of south east london are full of some of the noisiest and smelliest animals you can imagine. Thankfully, their pets are a delight *BA BOOM!* (thank you, watch me as I take a little bow).

Anyway, I am now back in the warmth of my study with an instant coffee (damned economy drive – more on my church mouse-ness another day) and a sulky cat, I am turning my attention to the thesis abstract I need to send off today in order to register my ‘intention to submit’ the actual thesis at some point in the (hopefully) not too distant future. As the thesis is mostly written, this shouldn’t take too long to write a one-page abstract, but I also have to submit my final, actual, definite title for the thesis and this is causing me to chew my lower lip into a bloody pulp of indecision.

I am crap at titles. Absolutely crap. I can’t even choose a blog title without making a chamomile tea and drawing up a list of pros and cons. As you may have noticed from our long-standing relationship, Internet, brevity is not my thing.  And titles need to be short, snappy and accurate. Ideally, they should have an element of wit, and yet failed attempts at this end up sounding like a Daily Mail headline and, as I’m sure you’ll agree, that would be a “Pun-damental” flaw in my plan to convince my examiners I am worthy of a title of my own.

Fortunately perhaps for me, academic studies tend to make full and frequent use of the colon as a way of marrying catchy but pointless title with boring but descriptive subtitle. Something like:

Alluringly Alliterative Accolades: the boring story of some lesser-known public figure 1847-1888

or

The Rise and Fall of Someone or Something: the thesis sounds more interesting if presented as a rise and fall even if nobody cares about the rise and fall therein.

or

Bold but Irrelevant Statement: How I intend to make my fave quote relevant to actual content of thesis.

It’s not the bracket (my puntuating weapon of choice) but it’ll just have to do. Or, sometimes, the colon is replaced by the question mark as follows…

Rhetorical Question? It may be rhetorical and out of context but I’m going to answer it anyway.

 

Ok, now I’ve had a bit of a practice, I’m going to try to fit my thesis topic into one of the above templates. Wish me luck!

 

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8 Responses to “Enter title here”

  1. Andy Szpuk said

    I’m with you here. I’m struggling to come up with a decent title for my WIP. Luckily, I’m still at the planning/research stage so have got some breathing space. A suitable title will come along eventually.

    • Thanks for stopping by, Andy. You called your short-story anthology Mosaic so I’d say you are pretty good at titles. I always prefer place-holder names, they don’t bring the anxiety of permanence. I’ve noticed there aren’t that many babies called “Bump”

  2. Narky said

    I just had to give a provisional title for a dissertation to my supervisor. It was a poor attempt.

  3. stillstrange said

    I hope for all the stress and annoyance; the vet visit went well and your cat will recover. I also hope it wasn’t to expensive. Alsation’s are beautiful cats.

    • Hello. Yes, she’s fine thanks. She has a urinary infection but it’s nothing serious and she just has some medicine for a couple of weeks. She’s already back to her old self, sitting on my computer when I try to work.

  4. jeg700 said

    Good Luck!
    Love that you have progressed this far already.
    Good going.

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