So, here’s a dumb thing to be thinking about: it really bugs me that I still haven’t come up with a decent title for the second book.

The first book named itself almost immediately. I was so paranoid about it that I threw a one-word code name on the drafts, like it was a Game of Thrones script that needed to be handled with absolute secrecy. (Ha!) Along the way, some people got a little too attached to the code name, but that name was never going to work. It wasn’t entirely unrelated, but it wasn’t really an option, either. The point is, I never stressed about the title, because it presented itself very early in the process, and years later it still felt right.

I used to slap titles on short stories once they were finished — I figured the best titles always popped up once you could see the whole picture, and usually, that was true. I’m trying to apply that attitude to the second book, but I can’t help wondering why #1 was precocious and #2 is being recalcitrant. I fiddled around with a few possibilities that sounded cool for maybe a nanosecond, and then gave up and slapped another code word on #2 for now. Hopefully, it’ll work itself out. It usually does.

Like the series title, for instance. That was a problem, too. I couldn’t get a handle on it until I was well into book 2, when the big picture started to really come into focus. As I was writing, a few new pieces of information popped up, and the series title presented itself the same way the title of the first book did: it hit me over the head and then stood over me, gloating. I resisted it at first, but the more I turned it over, the more I realized that there was no way I was ever going to come up with something more appropriate.

The brain gnomes are probably loving this. They’re always happiest when they’re screwing around with me.



“Touring the writing room” really means “journeying through decades of geekitude”. These guys are hanging out on the other side of the door. They’re less effective as guards, because they’re embroiled in a long-running battle with one of the kittens.


Feigenbaum is the kitten’s primary target. He appears to be setting a trap with that dangling leg.

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