Short Story Fiction: The Title
One of the important elements of a short story is title. If the title of a story is not catchy or interesting then it might not get any prospective readers attention. The title of a story must also be relevant to the story instead of naming a story with a title which has no relevance to the story or any of its characters. An enjoyable short story or novel might never get read by the public if the title does not do its job. A good title is like a good opening paragraph: it should be interesting, it should attract the reader's attention, and at the very least, it should be appropriate to the rest of the piece. Every author must also know that the title will be what represents ones work to the rest of the world.
In a short fiction story “Janus” by Ann Beattie the title could be somewhat confusing. The short story in question refers to a “bowl” a simple blue bowl which one of the characters, Andrea, thinks is the reason why she has had exceptional success as a realtor. It is her perception that in every house she has displayed the bowl she has sold that specific house. “She was sure the bowl brought her luck. Bids were often put in on houses where she had displayed the bowl.” (Beattie 102) Her title seems to not have any relevance to what the story is really about.
One could assume it might be about Janus the two-faced Roman god of gates, doors, doorways, beginnings, and endings. Maybe the bowl to her represents a similar
action of beginning and end, like the Roman god Janus, as she takes measures to always take special care of the bowl and never to leave it behind. She refers to her bowl like a friend being left behind and now knowing about it until later “It was like leaving a friend at an outing- just walking off.” (Beattie 103) Just the thought of losing this precious lucky charm could be the end of her success as a realtor.
Perhaps the audience would imagine a short story about war since Janus could also be interpreted...