Monday, February 13, 2012

What's in a name?

I have to admit, I am not good at titles. I put so much into the actual writing, so much into the words and the structure and the technical and contextual elements, that by the time I get to the title, I'm over it... or late for my next class... or bed time.

I don't like having to name things. Giving something a name makes it seem so... final. It's like, if you name something, that's what it is. Forever. Always. I will always be Jessica because that is what my parents named me. I like my name, but it's just so... permanent.

To give something a title, to use hundreds of words and letters and then end it with three little words that may or may not relate- how can you do that? How can I write an entire piece of work to settle on a three word title? Doesn't that seem a little strange?

People say, "Well what is your work about?" And I give them an answer, but the title can't be "It's about a house that I grew up in that had this really great swing set with monkey bars and a  rope....," so how do you choose? How do you choose a couple measly words to sum up your whole story?

Is it like life? Do you just write and write and write, and pick a word, whether it relates or not? I mean, my parents named me Jessica, but they didn't know whether I'd be a Jessica or Sarah, or Katie.... they just picked what they liked and I am me, and luckily, I like it and it fits me.

Wait, maybe that's how it is. Maybe "Jessica"fits me because that's what I've always been. My dog is a "Tabor" because she's never been called anything else, and this blog is about "Words" because that's what I called it. Is this blog even about words? I am so bad at titles.

My question is, are we defined by our titles? Are confined by them? Are we limited to what people say we are, what they call us? I don't think so... I think we are so much more than a title, just like a story is so much more than it's title, just like there is more to us than our names. Don't let people title you. Don't be defined by what someone else chooses to call you. More than likely, they don't know what you're about anyway.

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