I'm really horrible at naming my books. Especially now that I've been told the titles need to be more 'hooky'. That's hook as in draw the reader in and let them know what the story is about immediately. You may be wondering how this is different than what I've been doing all along. Here is a list of my titles for my Lakeview series. Let's play that old Sesame Street game - Which of These Things is Not Like the Other -
DIE BEFORE NIGHTFALL
EVEN IN THE DARKNESS
WHEN SILENCE FALLS
VALLEY OF SHADOWS
STRANGER IN THE SHADOWS
Did you spot it? It's like a green apple in a bowl full of red ones. LAKEVIEW PROTECTOR. No, I didn't come up with that title. I came up with about fifteen others. None of which worked.
Personally, I like the idea of hooky titles. I think they really do make a reader stop and take notice. They specifically name key elements of the book and let the potential buyer know before even reading the back cover blurb what the story is about. Obviously, my seventh Lakeview book is about...gasp...a protector.
Here's the problem, I can't write hooky titles. I try. Really, I do. But they just don't come easy to me. Case in point - book number ten. You'd think that by this point, I'd be able to pull a title out in five seconds flat, but over the past twenty-four hours, I've begged, borrowed, and stolen ideas from a variety of people (including, at my editor's suggestion - and how bad must my ideas have been if she made this suggestion - my children).
The original title was purposefully hooky - A HERO BY CHANCE. It was also knowingly bad. I expected to have to change it, but somehow neglected to think up new ideas. Probably because any idea I did come up with was equally bad. At this point, I'm wondering if the book will have a title at all. After consulting with friends, family and kids, there are a more than a few possibilities. Among them - Guardian Hero, Her Kind of Hero, Gunrunner Hero, Her Perfect Hero, A Hero By Design, Unlikely Hero, A Forever Hero, A Hero to Count on, A True Hero, Hero on the Mountain, A Hero at Heart, A Hero at Mind, A Sheep In Wolf's Clothing, The Lost and Lonely Hero, The Hero that is an Agent but is Protecting Someone
The ones in bold are the ones my kids came up with.
What will my editors come up with? That's the real question.
BTW, I'm still taking suggestions. Feel free to make some!