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ASK EM — What’s in a Title?

Keyboard with Tips and Tricks Button.


Recently I was faced with coming up with 3 book plots, 7 characters and 3 titles in one night. The characters and plots? Easy peasy. Titles? Not so much.

When it comes to titles and cover art, I’m the equivalent of a Real Housewife of Beverly Hills–nothing but the best for me! Just like the real housewives don’t want a 2-carat engagement ring off the sales floor, I don’t want some cover photo everyone else has. That goes for titles too.

What is in a title?

1. you want the title to fit and be readable in a thumbnail-sized cover. The Hardworking Heroes of Freedom Falls, Missouri is too long.
2. you DO NOT want your book to end up on this list
3. you DO NOT want readers to have to troll through 3 pages of books with the same title.

Titles are tough. They can sell books. They can offend readers. Amazon can make the book invisible in searches if the language is graphic.

A title should be a small window into the book’s pages. When you read the title Somethin’ Dirty, you probably have an idea of what kind of book you’re buying.

A few tips for choosing a title:
1. write at least 5 choices
2. check the titles on Amazon
3. check with your publisher or editor
4. run the title past a trusted friend who will only laugh at you behind her hand

Titles are one of the most important things you’ll write. Think hard about it!

Thanks for stopping by,


One comment on “ASK EM — What’s in a Title?

  1. Good post. I don’t think many authors understand how truly important a GOOD title is.

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