Hey everyone! We are back with a post which was voted for in a poll I ran on twitter. This time I will tackle the question of how to choose titles for your work. Now before I begin, I just want to mention I am no expert in this arena. I have my own strategies which work for me. However, I wanted to write a brief post on my strategies and how I come to a final decision on how to choose a title.
There are two different types of writers. You have those who have their titles already picked out & ready to go even before writing. On the other hand, you have writers like me, who write and then decide on a title at the end. This will be a relatively short post with certain tips I recommend for you, the reader.
- First and foremost, in my opinion, I like those short, to the point, ‘punch you right in the gut’ type of headlines. I tend to gravitate towards these. I prefer them to be completely honest. When a book or story title is too long or is an entire sentence, this tends to turn me off completely. Not saying you should judge a book by the cover. There are really amazing pieces of work out there. This is just my opinion.
- You want an attention grabbing title. Something that does not give too much away, leaving readers wanting to know more, but you provide just enough for readers to know what they are getting themselves into.
- Expanding off of #2, I like to use action words in my titles or words which will immediately spark the emotion of the reader. Depending on what type of post I’m writing, some titles could be longer than others. Overall I try to maintain 5 words maximum. No more than that.
- Other times I like to have one worded titles. For instance, if I’m writing a poem, I normally use one word which highlights the topic.
- If you are like me and you choose titles after you finish writing a piece of work, I like to choose main points from the piece. I make a list of them. I usually list key words, highlights, concepts related to the plot/climax, or something related to the resolution of the story. Making this list really helps me to choose a jaw dropping title.
There’s not much to my process. These are the steps I use and they really work, at least for me. Everyone has a different process, but I really hope these tips can assist you when you’re choosing titles for your work.
As always feel free to comment, email with with feedback: email@example.com, or feel free to tweet me @msdakotawrites on twitter. I am always looking to connect with other creatives, and I always welcome feedback which allows us to exchange ideas.
Until next time,