Earlier this week I emailed a book off to Penguin. It was contracted in 2004. It’s taken a while to actually finish, for various reasons.
I supplied it with a working title – the final selection is the publisher’s prerogative, by contract. The marketing departments usually have the most input, when all’s said and done. It’s not easy. A good title has to:
1. Sum up the whole book in two or three words – maybe with a subtitle, if it’s non-fiction, to qualify the snappy phrase.
2. Capture the reader’s imagination instantly.
3. Be memorable.
The point being that in this day and age, when it ‘s possible to self-publish, the burden of meeting those criteria falls squarely on the author.
My tips for doing it are:
1. Derive it from the log-line – er, you DO have a logline…don’t you?
2. Try two or three combinations – let them sit for a few days before finalising.
3. Don’t be afraid to get advice from beta-readers.
Something usually floats in. Usually. Do you ever have trouble finding titles for your material?
Copyright © Matthew Wright 2013
Coming up this weekend: ‘Write it Now – part 8′ – and watch for my take on Russell Crowe’s UFO.