Spine Poetry Challenge

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Spine Poetry Challenge

Filling out the marketing packet was moving along nicely until I came to this entry: “Title and subtitle suggestions (5 to 10 or more if you’re on a roll).”

Wait, what? Five to ten possible titles for my book? It took me six months to come up with the suggested title for this book, and you want me to come up with more?

I stared at the computer screen for an hour, thinking on possible variations of the one I’d already submitted. Finally, I gave up, and with a little hint of humor that I hoped would not be misinterpreted by the marketing team, I wrote: “Unfortunately, I’m not rolling at all. I’ll keep working on it.”

To my great relief, the team loved the original title that I’d submitted for my second book: London Tides. Because the first book in the MacDonald Family trilogy was called Five Days in Skye, I’d wanted to include location names in the other two books. Why Tides, though, when London is a big city?

For one thing, my hero, Ian MacDonald is an ex-championship sport rower, and the center of London rowing culture is the section of the River Thames called the Tideway. Most people don’t know that because the Thames Estuary flows into the North Sea, there’s a long stretch that’s subject to tidal flow–up to 24 feet difference between low and high tide!

Additionally, in London Tides, water is used repeatedly as a metaphor. The idea of going against life’s tides or with them surfaces within the text a number of times. The book also includes themes of spiritual rebirth, so the water symbolism is a subtle reflection of baptism, even where it’s not expressed directly.

Here’s just a little sneak peak of some of the lines that brought about the final title:

Elsewhere in the city, where the shadows fell early between buildings, streetlights winked on in clusters, little bright spots in the steadily darkening evening. The river churned around a handful of sightseeing boats and pleasure vessels, the tide about to ebb again. She imagined the vessels that were floating leisurely with the tide now having to rev their engines, put more power into just staying at the same speed. It was a fine metaphor for her life. Just when she thought things were flowing in her direction, the tide changed, and she had to work harder and harder just to stay still.

Now that we’ve talked about my title, it’s fun for you to have fun with some others! Take our Spine Poetry Challenge, running from May 4 to May 15, 2015.

The task: Simple. Grab your favorite books and create a “poem” or loose “limerick” from the titles. Something as simple as:

  • All your favorite authors in one stack
  • Similar titles
  • Similar spine colors for a lovely mosaic
  • Titles that when placed in a stack tell a simple story or rhyme
  • All of one author’s books in one stack

IMPORTANT: Be sure to post a link to your spine poetry in the PromoSimple form for your entry to be counted!

Ready for step two? Take a picture and post it on social media, tagging one or all of our authors: @PepperBasham, @KCambronAuthor, @CarlaLaureano, @BethVogt, @CathWest

Want extra credit? Visit each of the blogs (listed here: ) Pepper Basham, Kristy Cambron, Beth Vogt, and Catherine West and build a spine poetry entry for each author. You can enter as many times as you’d like!

The prizes: You didn’t want to do this just for the fun of it? Well, okay then. :- )) Any spine poetry is entered to win a prize basket with a copy of each of our author’s books:

The Thorn Bearer by Pepper Basham

A Sparrow in Terezin by Kristy Cambron

London Tides by Carla Laureano

Crazy Little Thing Called Love by Beth K. Vogt

Bridge of Faith by Catherine West

If you create a Spine Poetry with any of our authors in one collection, you’ll be entered to win THIS mother lode:

Hand-crafted journal

Hand-crafted Swarovski crystal bracelet

Pride & Prejudice DVD

Signed copy of The Butterfly and the Violin by Kristy Cambron

Yesterday’s Tomorrow by Catherine West

Signed copy of Somebody Like You by Beth Vogt

 And just to get you started, here’s my spine poem:

Spine Poem


The air we breathe,
Love’s awakening unwritten.
The shadow of your smile
Haunt(s) me still.

Now get “writing”…and don’t forget to enter your fabulous creation by clicking HERE.


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  1. Deanna S says:

    Thanks for the giveaway. my spine poetry for you.. How Many Brides did I find in my TBR stack?

    A most inconvenient marriage!!
    The BRIDE ship,
    the Rancher takes a BRIDE,
    a BRIDE in store,
    The Outlaw takes a BRIDE,
    The Brickmaker’s BRIDE…

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