The Queen of King Street becomes a City KId

What's in a name? Shakespeare got the point when Juliet says to Romeo, "A rose by any other name would smell just as sweet".

According to Brewer's Dictionary of Phrase and Fable, this means "the name is of little consequence, it does not affect the inherent qualities of the person or thing under consideration."

However, names are important. One of the first stories in the Bible is of Adam naming the animals. Why? Because it allowed him to identify each animal as a distinct species (none of them related to him and therefore not suitable as a mate).

Identifying them gave him also the power or mastery over each animal (he could name them, they couldn't name him), something mankind at times has misunderstood or abused ever since. (But that's another story.)

By naming something, it gives you permission to use it or have mastery over it. Let me give you some examples.

Blokes at the barbecue

The colour pink by any other name...One evening last summer I met up with people in my small business network. The men are straight, family-oriented types who like their beer, wine and red meat. Therefore I was surprised when most of them turned up in pink shirts. Pink? Not very blokey, I thought. When I commented, one of them (let's call him Ray) corrected me: they weren't wearing pink, they were wearing 'man salmon'!

After I'd picked myself off the floor from laughing, I considered that. There is nothing wrong with the colour pink. It's just that in their Western 'blokey' world, pink is usually considered a feminine shade. By calling it something else, Ray had permitted himself to wear an attractive colour that  normally wouldn't be admitted in his world. Permission and mastery.

The Queen becomes a City Kid

Working on Lola's book (see previous blogs), I took the liberty of suggesting a new title. 'The Queen of King Street' described this dignified, somewhat autocratic pioneering actress. As she is by far the oldest inhabitant on King Street, it seemed an apt title.

However, when I suggested it to her, there was a resounding NO! Lola and her husband George were in the acting profession before I was born (quite some time ago). To them, the word'queen' meant 'drag queen' or 'gay' which didn't describe Lola at all.

Protesting that I was thinking more along the lines of Elizabeth II didn't budge them. A name confines as well as permits and they had seen a connotation I hadn't thought of. So, The Queen of King Street will now be titled City Kid. But, like Shakespeare's rose, the contents won't be affected; it will be just as good as ever to read.

If you need an editor who thinks carefully about the whole editing process, from text to title, from proofreading to getting it ready to publish, contact me at Creative Text Solutions. I would love to make your writing ZING!  


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