How to find a title for your book

You wrote a book. You are writing a book. You are prepared to write a book. And of course, it is important that your book or future book will get a decent title. Catching, attracting curiosity, but not telling too much about its contents. Now, what are you doing?

I have asked as many writers as I could: “How do you find a title – and when do you try to find a title for your book?”

And I got as many answers as I asked authors.

Some of them find them at the beginning, or before they even started. Some can think of a title while they’re still writing and some are thinking forever about it after the book is completed.

For the past few days, I have tried to research some information on how to find a book title for my book(s).

***

August 1, 2013, Writer’s Relief Staff wrote about the “Elements of Great Book Titles” and mentions 7 important elements, such as:

  • Poetic language
  • Action words
  • Inherent mystery/conflict
  • Character’s names
  • Place names
  • Quirky titles
  • The One Word Title

Each of the elements is accompanied by several classic examples.

The article as well writes: “When in doubt, get help,” which I think is an excellent advice. I haven’t tried that yet, but I will one day, just to find out, what others come up with.

To read the entire article, please go to http://writersrelief.com/blog/2013/08/great-title-for-your-book-or-story-or-poem/

***

The “IndieBookLauncher.com” Website has published a blog post about book titles and gives us a simple formula that will help us create an amazing title:

(essence of your book) + (a twist) = your title

 

This article is divided into several elements as well. I find it quite interesting since there are fewer elements than in the previous article, but the “twist” contains several sub-components. Let’s show you this:

Main element: The Essence of Your Book

Main element: The Twist

Sub-components:

  • Add Perspective
  • Add Imagery, Metaphor or Emotion
  • Use Dialogue from your Manuscript
  • Add Intrigue or Curiosity
  • Add Context
  • Add Comparison or Juxtaposition
  • Add Wordplay
  • Simple Additions or Changes

Main element: Making Your Final Choice

Main element: Testing Your Title

Even though I think the article is quite interesting, it seems complicated to me and at the end concludes with nearly the same idea: “Get Help.”

You will find the entire article here: http://www.indiebooklauncher.com/resources-diy/how-to-pick-a-title-for-your-book.php

***

One of the easiest to read, informative and interesting articles about this topic I found was written by Max Tucker on the “Book In A Box” Website.

Max Tucker doesn’t only describe the way of finding a book title in different examples; he as well describes the marketing effect the book title has and recommends us:

“Spend time figuring out the best possible title for your book. It will determine a large part of what people think about your book, and thus, your book’s success.”

Max Tucker also tells us the five attributes of good book titles which are, according to him:

  1. Attention Grabbing
  2. Memorable
  3. Informative (gives idea of what book is about)
  4. Easy to say
  5. Not embarrassing or problematic for someone to say aloud to their friends

At this place, I’d like to recommend reading this article. I find it very useful. It is to find here: http://bookinabox.com/how-to-title-a-book/

***

Another blog post I discovered was written by Scott Berkun, the author of six successful books. He gives us the ten main elements in choosing our book title and writes about his experience. “The truth about choosing book titles,” published December 4, 2012.

 

#1: Advice is cheap, decisions are hard

#2: This is all very subjective, even among experts

#3: Many titles are clichés

#4: The title serves many functions

#5: Titles aren’t predictive of sales

#6. We feel different after we read the books

#7: What really matters

#8: What to do: Make a big list

#9: Use modern tools like polling and A/B Testing

#10:  Remember A title is just a sentence

 

I think, Scott’s advice is useful, and I can feel the value of his ideas and recommendation. If you’d like to read the entire article, go to http://scottberkun.com/2012/the-truth-about-picking-book-titles/

***

And then, in the end, there are two more possibilities to find your book title: in your dreams – or in the shower… that’s how one of my author friends found hers. 🙂

or

As a last resort: The Book Title Name Generator which can be found here: http://fantasynamegenerators.com/book-title-generator.php#.VqUEao-cHGg

 

 

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40 thoughts on “How to find a title for your book

  1. I usually come up with one sentence to describe my whole story and take keywords from that for the title. Most of the time it works. 😀 The rest of the time I do my best. Sometimes though, a title just pops into my head while I’m planning or writing.

    Liked by 2 people

  2. All great tips! It’s funny, people say not to judge a book by its cover, but the cover art and title is the first thing people see, so of course we’re going to judge it without meaning to. Titles are very important.

    Liked by 2 people

  3. I have a book series. I’ve written three and I’m on my fourth. The main character’s name is Frank and, so far, his first name appears in every title. (Frankly Speaking, Let Me Be Frank, Frank Incensed). The series has been fun to write, but hopefully I haven’t painted myself into a corner. I was on an author’s panel at a recent book signing event and an audience member actually came up with a list he had written for future titles. There were about 15 of them. That was surprising and helpful.

    Liked by 3 people

  4. Aurora, let me ask you right out do you like ‘Chocolat for Lilly’ or ‘North Depot 1922’ or ‘Emmaline & Robert?’ I’m working on a historical fiction and will be looking for titles pretty soon. Thanks for this site!

    Like

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