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How to Make a Title for a Book

timeless-1The title of your book is what will initially attract a reader to it. This means many writers feel a lot of pressure when trying to choose the right title. If you want to know how to make a title for book, then the first step of the process is to consider the one key point your title is trying to make.

Then you’ll want to put a wrinkle into that key point to give the title a little spark of interest. Something that is consistent with your book, yet shocking enough to catch a passing reader’s eye so they want to pick up the book to look at it a little more.

If you wish, you could think of the title creation process as a mathematical equation: (key point of book) + (interesting twist) = your book title.

Are you ready to create the best title ever for your book?

What Is the Key Point of a Book?

When you’re looking at what the overall key point of your book happens to be, what you’re doing is evaluating what the narrative is really about. The answer isn’t always easy to find. You might have developed several themes throughout the narrative and they all have key points that are important to you.

That’s okay. All of those themes have one general arc which ties them all together. This is where one part of your title equation lies. It is the subject matter of the book.

Many writers will choose a place in history, an attitude, or an event as their title. In other words – a noun. Nouns generally make good titles because readers can relate to them in some way. If you are reading Bridget Jones’ Diary, it becomes an interesting title for some because they keep their own diary.

People who like certain places will be attracted to titles with that place name in them. Events, real or fictional, also make for good titles because it summarizes for the reader what the narrative of the text is leading toward.

Yet direct nouns and statements can often be boring. Uninteresting. If the title makes you yawn as a writer, then imagine what it will do for a reader! This is where adding an interesting twist to the title equation can give it the extra life it needs.

How You Can Add a Twist to Your Title

This part of the title equation is about adding intrigue. You’re trying to add rhythm to the title, associate suspense to it, or make it unique in some way. The number of ways that you can add a twist to a title are numerous, but sometimes a little flavor can go a long way. Here are some of the most successful twists that writers are using today.

  • Personal perspective. How do you feel about your book? Your characters? What would your characters say about the narrative? Sometimes a unique perspective within the book becomes a good title because it makes the perspective stay clear while making it visually appealing: The Cat in the Hat, for example.
  • Images and emotion. This could mean your personal emotions and the images that are brought to mind during that experience. If you feel sad, what do you picture? It could also be something that your character experiences. Eat, Pray, Love is a good example of this type of twist.
  • Dialogue. There might be a certain phrase which really stands out in your narrative. This means it could be a great title. It’s how we got the title Gone with the Wind.

There are numerous additional options, such as wordplay, comparisons, juxtapositions, or added context and all of them can provide the needed information for the title equation.

Instead of choosing just one title, however, it may be a good idea to create 5-10 titles which you feel could work for your book. Then test out those titles with friends and family who will give you honest feedback about them. Talk to people on your social networks. Weed out the unpopular titles and then repeat the process until you’re left with only the best one still standing.

The right title for your book will make it much more interesting to read. The wrong title will cause potential readers to look at a different book. By following this title equation, you’ll be able to know how to make a title for a book that works to tell your entire story in an interesting way with only a few words.

Melissa G Wilson

Melissa has been a leader in the book writing, publishing and marketing arena for the past two decades. To date, she has helped more than 100 thought leaders write, publish and market their books. Her clients include executives such as Dan Weinfurter a seven-time Inc 500 winner and Orlando Ashford, President of Holland Cruise Lines.

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