I’ve noticed these sorts of titles have gotten really popular in fanfic in the last year or so. They’ve always been around, but usually as an affection of a particular author. Now it seems everyone is calling their fics things like “and here but in the darkness do I find the last drops of your soul.” or “First in summer, then in spring: gentle is the shimmering beat”. And it’s not like the fics themselves are necessarily pretentious. Just the titles.

My theory? Titles are hard. I’m freakin’ terrible at them, which is why I have an editor to tell me what my books are going to be called (thanks, Sarah!). Before I had that, I accrued a startling number of things called “untitled”. Pretentious pseudo-poetry titles–particularly ones taken from actual poems/quotes/songs–are easy, since someone’s already done most of the work of figuring them out for you. And they do have a certain appealing lyricism.

So yeah, I confess I use them now myself. Which is why I’m lucky I have an editor to beat them out of me before I go to print (profic being a different beast to fan- in a lot of ways, this being one of them).