No Breath Left
While we’re talking about the amount of work that goes into a book, even a short small-press book that will earn you back no more than a hundred pounds or so, here’s a page of alternate titles I came up with for the novel ‘Breathe’. It’s one of ten documents I found pertaining to alternate content in the book. I can’t tell you how much I hated the final cover.
‘Breathe’ concerned a company that used smart building technology to alter the air composition in order to increase the productivity of its employers, but when the spy thriller author Phillip Kerr brought out a book on the same subject called ‘Gridiron’ (this was after I’d written mine but before it was published – it happens) I changed mine into a sort of dark- comic SF action-thriller with jokes about the workplace just to get it out there.
The odd thing is that Mr Kerr and I had been connected by a sketchy producer who had shared knowledge between us. This occurs sometimes and can’t be guarded against, but it rather knocked my plans on the head. I actually thought his book was better and deserved bigger success. Perhaps we both found that it was the wrong time for such a subject.
‘Breathe’ became a feature script that nobody ever really saw. I still think it would make a fun film, although it’s probably too expensive now. I’m pretty sure I still have a copy of the script somewhere. There are some very funny scenes in it of insane workers continuing to work as the place descends into chaos.
Scripts about offices are a hard sell because audiences don’t like stories that remind them of having to work.
Anyway, here are the alternate titles I came up with. It’s the kind of exercise I carried out on thousands of the feature films I worked on.
The Top Floor
Out Of Hours
Out Of Order
World Of Work
The Ulysses Contract
Monday To Friday