How to Title Your Book
Hi, Y’all. Welcome back to #Writing Wednesdays!
You have an awesome book idea so you need an awesome book title to go with it. So today, I’ll be sharing with you some tips to keep in mind when trying to come up with a title for your work in progress.
You know the saying, don’t judge a book by its cover? Well guess what… People judge books by their covers. And part of that cover is the title, so having a great title is just as important as having a great cover.
The time when you name your book can happen at any point in the writing process. From before you even start outlining, to after you finish the outline, all the way to when you finally finish the first couple of drafts.
Unfortunately, there’s no exact formula for perfectly titling your book. To start though, here are five things to keep in mind when you’re coming up with your title.
Number 1: Brainstorm
Don’t be afraid to write down every single title that crosses your mind, even if they don’t sound that good at the time. Just like part one of outlining, brainstorming is a great first step because it allows you to get all of your ideas out on paper and with each new idea, you’ll grow in your ideas and find inspiration even from the bad ones.
Number 2: Keep Your Genre and Plot Line in Mind
This boils down to not following trends. You may see a lot of great books with love in the title, but if your writing a mystery thriller book with lots of death, and only one kissing scene in the whole book, then you may not want to put love in the title because all it does is fool and confuse the reader. And your reader will NOT like that.
Number 3: Be Wary of the Length
Typically the popular title length is around two and five words, you can make it longer than that, but be careful if you do. Your title should be enticing and if you’re basically laying out a whole description of your book in your title, then potential readers won’t be as interested. If you have an important concept or idea that you want to portray on your cover in addition to your title, consider adding a tagline. Taglines are especially great for books in a series.
Number 4: Consider the Point of View
If you’re writing your fiction book in the first person point of view of your main character, you may be tempted to include personal pronouns like “I” and “My”, but to the reader, this could be construed as talking about yourself, rather than your main character. But if you’re writing a non-fiction work about an experience you’ve had, then go right ahead and say that.
Number 5: Check the Originality
After you come up with your top book title ideas, be sure to google them or plug them into the Amazon Books search bar. Titles can’t be copyrighted, so you could name your book the same as someone else, but just be aware that if you do, it’ll be harder to shine through if your book is mixed with an array of others with the same title.
I recently came up with a new idea for a book and searched the title that came to mind: Kiss of Death. Dozens of other books with the exact same title came up, so I probably won’t be going with that title idea in the future.
Now that you know some things to keep in mind when developing your book title, here are some ideas of how to adapt your book idea and plot line to the title.
- Include the Main characters name. An example of this technique would be Harry Potter.
- Use the duty or position of the main character. The Maze Runner could be an example of this.
- Use the main event or concept that consumes the story. A great example here is The Hunger Games.
- Get deep with it and use a title with a deep, hidden meaning that will become clear to the reader as they go through the book. For example, Silence of the Lambs.
The last thing to keep in mind is to be aware that your title may change. Especially if you came up with the title before you officially started writing.
I personally titled my work in progress before I started writing and now that I’m almost done, I’m starting to think that it doesn’t quite fit the way I originally thought it would.
Your book title is super important when it comes to attracting readers, so treat it as such, and take your time coming up with the perfect title for you.