Being a writer – part 9 – what’s in a title?

Hi everyone, so the next step in our self-publishing journey is to pick a title.

First of all – a quick update. Book 2 in my Puzzle Train series – Puzzle Island – is now available on Amazon. Tom and his friends are invited by the Conductor to test his latest project – a whole island dedicated to puzzling, where they can roam free completing puzzles and collecting the clues. They are supposed to be the only people on the island, but it seems as if an old enemy is about to make an appearance.

No writing for me this week. After finishing my latest project last week, I’ve picked up book 4 of the Puzzle Train series – Puzzle at Sea – for the latest edit. My editor has been through and checked, looking for spelling, grammar and inconsistencies and I’m going through and making the necessary changes.

Ever since I started writing my latest project, I had a title in mind for it. But as the weeks have gone by and the project has progressed, I’ve been thinking it’s the wrong title. So I’ve started to rethink.

This weeks topic is – what makes a good title?

The title is the first thing your reader will see. Probably before they’ve even taken in the cover. Have you ever been in a bookshop and picked up a book just because the title was interesting?

  1. Be unique – although many titles have already been done. There’s nothing stopping you under copyright law calling your book Lord of the Rings, but you’re likely to have many disappointed readers
  2. Be memorable – imagine you saw a really good book and you want to tell your friend about it – only you forgot the title.
  3. Give a clue to the books content – make the reader interested

But how do you do this?

Brainstorm as many titles as you can. List them, play with the words, twist them around, change the order.

If in doubt, go back to the five questions – who, what, where, when and why.

  • Who is the novel about?
  • What is the novel about?
  • Where is the novel set?
  • When is the novel set?
  • Why should someone read your novel?

If you have any questions about anything to do with self-publishing, contact me to set up an initial discussion.


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