Enter Title Here

Okay, so the the title of this post is what appears on the dashboard side of things when we bloggers click on “Add New Post.”

It’s kind of amusing what sparks blog posts sometimes…

I chose to use that title because… well, I’m blogging about titles. About how difficult it can be sometimes to choose them, and how sometimes the title you think is just plain perfect is already in use. Titles are truly the bane of my writing existence.

One disclaimer, for people who may be wondering. Titles themselves cannot be copyrighted. The story to which a title is attached can be (and is from the moment it’s written), but the title can’t be. So from a legal standpoint, there isn’t anything wrong with using the same title as Author B, C, and Q.

However, if you want your book to stand out, it’s probably not a good idea to use the same title half a dozen other people have used, especially on recent releases.

My novel Eternal Love was originally titled Timeless. To me, that seemed an appropriate title for a novel about immortals. On my publisher’s request, I did an Amazon search for books with that title.

There were a LOT. Including two within the last year, and those two included one by Patric Michael, an author for whom I have a great deal of respect. I certainly didn’t want to use the same title he’d used just last year, or that another author used in February of this year, or that a dozen or more other authors have used. So I decided to change it, which unfortunately put me back in the position of trying to think of a title. (You’d be stunned at how long it took me to come up with “Timeless”… have I mentioned I don’t like trying to think of titles?)

Same thing happened with a novel I recently submitted. My original title was Safe Harbor. Made sense; it takes place in part at a marine assistance towing company, so I wanted some kind of ocean reference. Knowing I probably wasn’t the first to think of that title, I checked Amazon. Again, many results, including one that was just released in April. So I tried Home Port. Not a chance with that one… The Nora used it! So I settled for Their Home Port… and it’s a moot issue until the novel is accepted anyway. LOL

Sometimes a story comes complete with an awesome title. Unfortunately for me, that doesn’t happen often. There have been occasions where I’ve spent more time coming up with a title than I’ve taken to write the first chapter or two. And even then sometimes I have to change the title by the time I’m finished.

If you’re an author, how do you come up with titles for your stories? And if you’re a reader, what kind of title catches your attention?


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