Titles are hard. The giant list of rejected titles for the Lady Astronaut novels
The books that I finally titled as THE CALCULATING STARS and THE FATED SKY were really, really hard to title. They're prequels to my novelette "The Lady Astronaut of Mars" and so I initially wanted a title in the same vein. But at the beginning of the first novel, she's not an astronaut yet. There aren't astronauts at all.

I was also trying to get something that felt like a title from 1952, which is when the first novel is set. The problem we ran into is that all of them sounded dated. 

Here's the initial giant, giant list of attempts.

  • When the Oceans Boil Away
  • Still As Bright
  • Red Sky in Morning
  • T is for Minus
  • Rocket Girls Unchained!!! (This was never serious, just to be clear)
  • Chains of Gravity
  • Specific Impulse
  • The Third of March
  • Hot Sea, Cold Sand
  • In the Meteor Age
  • Daedulus One
  • The Slow Disaster
  • These Signs Forerun
  • The Fixed Stars of Heaven
  • The Calculating Stars <--The winner!
  • All the Stars of Heaven
  • How Far Away the Stars
  • Circular Motions
  • The Inauspicious Skies
  • The Bradbury Expedition
  • Soft Rains
  • Calculations
  • Ablation
  • Apogee
  • I Am a Computer
  • Trajectory
  • Orbital Velocity
  • Escape Velocity
  • T-Minus
  • The Artemis Program
  • Project Daedalus
  • The Lady Computer of Charleston
  • There Will Come Sharp Rains
  • After the Meteor
  • The Computer’s Husband
  • Space or Bust
  • Satellite Wife
  • The Lonely Ones
  • Silent Towns (Bradbury short)
  • The Meteor Chronicles
  • The Jade Rabbit Project
  • Kiddush Levanah Project
  • The Esther Project
  • The Fifth of Adar

I also looked at individual words for inspiration

  • Meteor
  • Velocity
  • Star
  • Rocket
  • Orbital
  • Meteoric
  • Angular Momentum
  • Derivative

I abandoned most of those, and went back to my old trick of heading to the Shakespeare database and plugging in words until I found quotes that seemed relevant. He had a way with language, that guy.  

When we realized it was two books, I grouped them into pairs and sent them over to Tor's marketing and sales departments to make the decision. Here's what I sent them to pick from.


The format is Book 1 -- Book 2

  • Indivisible -- Long Division
  • Artemis Seven -- Aries Twenty-one
  • The Calculating Stars -- The Fated Sky
  • Promised the Stars — Space Enough
  • Relative Expression — Dependent Events
  • The Lady Astronaut Corps -- Elma, Astronaut of Mars
  • Dr. York and the Moon -- Dr. York and Mars
  • In the Age of the Meteor -- After the Moon
  • The Calculating Girl -- Elma of Mars
  • Groundless -- Weightless

Titles are hard.

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