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5 Tips on Choosing your book title

Just like your cover art, your book title can make or break your sales potential. Most of us get fixated on a certain phrase or word and insist on using it as a title without carefully evaluating whether it will catch attention or not. I should know, I was fixated with the phrase “full circle” the whole time I was writing my novelette, only to change it to something else days prior to submission. Here are some of the things I’ve learned during the process:

1. Mention the Main Character of your story + the twist

The title should contain the whole story in a few words. You can call it a summary of a summary, or blurb of a blurb, but it should be short, a story in itself and catchy enough for book shoppers to be intrigued. Technique – Use the name of the main character + a twist on the type of story it is. Is the story a quest (finding something or someone), Revenge, self enlightenment, etc.

ex. Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone – Main Character + the quest.

ex. 50 Shades of Grey – Technique used.  A play on the different sides of the Main Character -Grey is the name of the main character)

ex.  Jurassic Park: A novel – Main Character – A novel signifies, this is a fictional story. Jurassic screams DINOSAURS

2. Discuss book title’s with others

Discuss book title ideas with other people. Poll different types of people. Readers, and non-readers alike. If you can speak with sales or marketing people, all the better. Ask people how the title makes them feel. When I was deciding on a title, I asked my partner and all I got out of him were grunts because he has no clue about the industry. But when I approached Hope Learns To Jump Rope Author Amy Cancryn and bounced off ideas with her, she generously gave me great suggestions.

3. Write down a few different titles

Write down potential book titles and play around with them until you find one that suits your content and you are sure would attract readers. Choose at least 3 titles to bounce off people.

4. Know your target market

Research the best fit for your book. Are you catering to women? Children? Entrepreneurs? Young Adults? Study your audience’s culture and find out what titles are most likely to attract them. View titles of best selling books that your audience buys. Are there any similarities in the title structure? Are the the titles long, short?

5. Illicit emotion by using power words

Keep it short but powerful. Your title should be short enough to easily be recalled and powerful enough to convey a compelling message. How do you want your audience to feel when they read your book title? Try to illicit this emotion when crafting your title. Use this great post from blogger to find great power words, to get the emotion you want from your audience.

Or use a book title generator to come up with ideas if you are stuck. The generator could come up with great ideas and then you can play around with it.

Book Title Generator


How do you create titles for your books? Share in the comments.

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