The collected adventures of Dylan, Dougall and Deirdre is nearing completion. I’m wondering what to call it.

This is a project that emerged from the short stories I originally did for the BookElves Anthologies. Then I did a follow-up in 2017 to raise funds for the islanders that were trying to buy Ulva – I posted an extract here.

Dylans Yuletide Journey

Dylan, Dougall and Deirdre collected together

Have I told you about Deirdre? I decided that they needed a girl partner-in-crime in their adventures, so I’ve been working her into the three existing stories. She also stars in her own episode, inspired by the #writephoto short story recently where the sea was like glass.

So now I have three Ds, in four stories, and they are ready to go to the beta-readers. And for once, that includes some on-age beta-readers! My great-niece and my friend’s daughter are both aged nine, and have accepted the challenge. We’ll see what they come up with.

I’m aiming for publication before Easter, but it will depend on the beta readers.

Guinea pigs or boys and girls?

I’m still stuck with the dilemma over whether they are guinea pigs or people in these books. There is considerable description of Dougall’s long hair, and Dylan looking like a mop. In Dougall’s story, where he meets a reindeer, he is specifically named as a guinea pig. The length of the reindeer stride gets compared with his own.

I find more new stories (some for young readers) feature animal protagonists these days. Last year I read Umbrella Mouse, Swashbuckling Cats, the Wide Awake Loons, and the Wind in the Door, which all had animal protagonists, mostly as anthropomorphic. Maybe the fashion has changed again. If so, I should probably work harder on Dylan’s Yuletide Adventure (the first one) to clarify that he and the other characters are guinea pigs.

What to call the collected tales

Well, it’s not a trilogy! ‘The Adventures of…’ sounds unexciting. Mysteries might be a good word to use. ‘Dylan, Dougall and Deirdre’ in part of the title is a but of a mouthful, although “xxxx xxxxx: the collected adventures of Dylan, Dougall and Deirdre’ might work.

I’ll work on it, but any suggestions are welcome.

dylan lights of ulva cover

Publication plans

At first I thought this would just be an ebook. But then I realised that I can publish the paperback with Blurb, but not set it on general circulation, just sell it from my website, and by a link from Smashwords. This enables me to keep the price down, and fulfilment is direct from Blurb, who I have always been happy with in that respect.

So it will be an ebook on Smashwords, iTunes, B&N and Kobobooks (and others, including the library distributors). I may even include a link to the paperback within the ebook – and vice versa, with maybe a discount code for Smashwords.

Given how many of my writing friends are starting to do smaller projects that do not rely on Amazon to (not) push it for them, it’ll be interesting to see how this goes. Of course, Dylan’s first adventure has been a free ebook until recently. I wonder if that will make a difference?

And now… to work on a cover 🙂

Collected Adventures – what to call it?
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5 thoughts on “Collected Adventures – what to call it?

  • 21 January, 2021 at 12:03 pm

    Congrats on completing your manuscript and getting ready for publication. Titles are hard. My current manuscript is still just “New Story.” Is there a theme to all your stories that you could incorporate in your title? Good luck figuring it out.

  • 21 January, 2021 at 1:29 pm

    The Three D’s: collected adventures of Dylan, Dougall and Deirdre ?

  • 22 January, 2021 at 10:35 am

    Hi Jemima – yes … all I can say is good luck figuring something out … ‘Discovering Dylan, Dougall and Deidre … the three Ds adventures’ – not easy – all the best – Hilary

  • 22 January, 2021 at 11:08 am

    I’m heading towards ‘The Messenger Mysteries’, as Dylan is the castle’s messenger, and everything stems from that. And I need to tweak his first adventure to make sure he’s clearly a guinea pig, albeit in the style of Wind in the Willows.

    By the way, sorry you’re having to fill in the sign in form again. Even I have to! I had an influx of spam this month.

  • 23 January, 2021 at 4:45 pm

    I like the XXXXX: The Adventures of D, D, & D. Messenger Mysteries maybe okay, but not sure about the “mystery” designation. Messengers is definitely good.
    This is hard!

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