CAREER ADVANCEMENT / JUN. 01, 2014
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How to Write a Book Title that Hooks More Readers and Buyers

Since the title is the first thing people see, learning how to write a book title is very important. You need to create a title which will excite and capture potential readers. However, titling a book is big challenge for many. The following are some tips that will help you come up with great book titles.

1. Keep titles short

It is important to have a title that is easy to remember. When titling, less is always more. Using few words is advisable since most people are usually scanning. The DaVinci Code is a great case in point of a short title. The author’s title is descriptive, conveys content and also peaks interest.

2. Make titles descriptive

A good title needs to be descriptive. Usually, fiction titles are more adventurous and creative than non-fiction. Non-fiction titles should give an idea of the content. Find interesting aspects of your book that readers can visualize, and then use relevant words in your title. Consider the book’s plot or theme. Think about the text and what the main theme is. This could end up producing a great title.

Talk to an associate or close friend who has read the book. Hearing someone else’s thoughts might be helpful in learning how to write a book title. As you ask people for proofreading or editing help, ask them to be thinking of titles.

3. Think of relevant keywords

If you have tried repeatedly but have failed to come up with a good title, ask yourself the following questions:

  • Why would anyone want to read my book? What makes it stand out? What are the key features? Answer these questions with a title.
  • Which words would someone use in a search engine to look for a book in my field? Think of the keywords that would be used and create a title that includes those words.

After identifying all the potential keywords, come up with several possible word combinations. You could involve your family and friends in this exercise. You need to be witty when writing titles. Think of puns or word plays that you can use. Review all the word combinations and if there is any that would make a great book title.

If there is no combination that would make a good title, you will need to brainstorm a little more. Search your thesaurus for more unique and interesting, but recognizable words. Write down noun and verb synonyms for the words you already have, and then think of more word combinations using these new words.

Remember, titles are usually not copyrighted. Though the title you choose might already be in use, you can still use it. However, to avoid unnecessary confusion, it would be advisable to rethink the wording.

4. Be ready to change the title

Your book’s title may have a deep personal meaning for you. However, you might find that your publisher or editor has different ideas about the title. This happens frequently and could lead to the author being disappointed. In most cases, the experts have more insight as far as publishing and marketing is involved. As part of the publishing agreement, you may be required to allow editorial changes and depend on the publisher’s expertise. However, if it is very necessary to keep the title intact, you need to discuss these requirements prior to signing any deals or contracts.

Though the title can make or break a book in the marketplace, finding a marketable title takes much effort and time. However, with lots of brainstorming, research and patience, you could find the perfect title to create a best-seller.

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