I wanted to write a book that teaches the principles of freedom. We often realize how important things are when those things are under attack. So, I decided to teach freedom by creating a scenario where freedom and the Constitution are on the verge of destruction.
Many leaders of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints have referred to Joseph Smith as having said that the day will come when the Constitution will hang by a thread, as it were. There are some legitimate questions about the validity of that statement. But the fact is that it is a quote that creates outstanding imagery and is a highly recognized concept in the LDS culture.
At first, I named my story Hanging by a Thread. Although that is an outstanding title, a search of that title yields multiple books, including one already in the LDS market, and at least one more coming out in 2010 to a national market. Changing it from a to The Thread set it apart a bit.
Finally, Hanging by The Thread has a double meaning. On the surface, it appeals to the famous quote attributed to Joseph Smith. But as the story unfolds, the second meaning becomes clear. In Hanging by The Thread, the bad guys call themselves The Thread. And voila!