I've been trying to decide what to call my new historical novel for kids. From the beginning, I planned to call it A Buss From Lafayette. (Buss is an old-fashioned word for a playful kiss.) This is what I call it in my head, and have done so since I came up with the idea for this book, which was 18 years ago. (I'm a slow worker.)
As some of you know, my first novel of this sort was The Riddle of Penncroft Farm. Although everyone knows what a riddle is, very few know (before they read the book) that it also is the name of an antique farm implement, a large sieve used to separate chaff from grain.
Several people who know about what makes a young reader pick out a book to read, however, have told me that no one today, especially no one YOUNG, realizes that Buss means kiss. Some have told me it makes the story sound as if it is about bus travel from a town called Lafayette.
I have tried coming up with subtitles that explain what a buss is, but all seemed quite cumbersome, and destroyed the way in which A Buss From Lafayette echoes The Riddle of Penncroft Farm. For the time being, I changed the name to A Kiss From Lafayette, but I can't help feeling that this is the WRONG TITLE!
I think I may have found a solution, but I haven't quite made up my mind.
Hope it doesn't take me another 18 years to figure this out!