What’s your method for selecting a title worthy of a New York Times best seller?
Mine? I’ve been struggling.
However, I hit on something that might not be the proverbial hen that lays the golden egg, but it’s mighty close. And if not close, then certainly lots of fun. In a moment, you’ll meet Lulu.
I decided there had to be a better way to attack the process of titling and lessen my ongoing angst. I don’t worry about short story or poetry titles. Book titles are what keep me up at night, or wake me up when my subconscious pounds on my brain and demands to be heard. Like at 3:00 am. Even then, I don’t usually fall in love with that title, and due to my interrupted sleep, I’m certain to be grouchy the next day. Something not conducive to searching for the perfect title during daylight hours.
Believing that need is the mother-of-invention, my struggle sent me to the internet in search of a sure-fire method for titling a novel.
Attention! Lieutenant Title reporting back on my reconnaissance:
My first try landed me at an Amazon page with Roger C. Parker who’s apparently written many books about writing, none of which I’ve ever heard of. (Mr. Parker, please do not take offense. I’ve found you now and am investigating your offerings.)
Not finding the site useful for my immediate needs, I metaphorically trudged onward and clicked to How to Pick a Book Title, a posting in a blog called Ensight-Jeremy Wright.
Jeremy’s blog elaborates about how titles can spring from:
Half and Half Words
I found the information useful to a point, but more like points to ponder, or empty-calorie food for thought, and I left not quite satisfied.
Next, I found How to Write and Publish Fiction where Jason Moser gives logical tips for how to pull words from your writing to create a great title.
It’s an easy-to-do method, one that on the surface kept me engaged and focused. I played around, creating a scramble with words. A few good ideas came from the recommended exercise, but I wasn’t quite to the finish line yet.
I continued my quest, which landed me here: meryl.net –Meryl’s Notes Blog. Things wordy, geeky and webby
Selecting the Perfect Book Title (a blog post from Tuesday, January 10th, 2006 at 11:52 AM) I pondered…this information has been out there all this time and I’m just discovering it now?
Contained within that post, one that is now over six years old, I found a gem. A tool. Something to lessen my angst. Embedded within the text of the blog post was a link to Lulu: Put Your Title to the Test. And that’s what I did.
I tried several times. Secrets and Strawberry Soda. Lemonade and Death. Friendship Foibles. And others that I won’t mention. Lulu rated each one with about a 10% chance of success. Not to be outdone, my competitive nature took over. Now, I think I have a workable title that I really like.
So, if you want to exit the title quagmire with me, wave and say, ‘hello.’ Then, check out Lulu and let me know how it works for you. Also, if you know of great “How-To” sites that offer a method for titling manuscripts, please share.