I'd like to say that now I spend lots of time on what to title my stories, so they don't revolve around the word 'story'. At present, my favourites are Draped in Deception, Wrecked in War, Golden Revenge, Upturned, Safe-House, and Splintered Crown.
Not too bad, right? (I hope.)
I know several writers who struggle to put together titles, so I've made a list of ideas of how you can come up with a title for your beautiful, magical book.
1) Find Sentences that Jump Out at You
Draped in Deception had been going under a name so horrible I won't even mention it here, and I was determined to find another one. In search of inspiration, I quickly flipped through the manuscript, hunting for any phrases or words that jumped out at me. And sure enough, my eye caught on this sentence:
Why did the world have to be a woman draped in jewels of deceit, earrings of deception, and a necklace of lies?
Not the best writing, sure, but the sentence sparked a title into my head by combining two of the words in there, and bam! I had my title. I've noted other books often have their titles in sentences within, like in Queen of Shadows. Give this method a try, but if you're still coming up dry, maybe move onto...
2) List Your Novel's Aesthetic
This is the method I, almost unconsciously, used for Golden Revenge. When brainstorming my stories, I like to string together different words that I feel communicate the tone or mood of it. But while in the initial stages my list focused on plot, compiling a list of words that relate to your novel's aesthetic can give you lots of adjectives to play around with. Golden Revenge's looked something this:
Hands dripping gold + a mass of filthy bodies amidst glimmering gowns+ velvet wings + drawn daggers + an inferno clawing at darkness + a shy smile + bitter revenge = Golden Revenge.
3) Imagine Your Future Book Cover
Honestly, we've all done this. Your novel is sitting in place of pride in a bookstore, with its glossy cover and brilliantly crafted words. Forget what the title is for a moment; imagine the cover art. What is on there? What are the colours? Is it stark and simple, or a haphazard of neon?
I took this method for thinking up Splintered Crown, and when I pictured a crown, snapped into tiny pieces and scattered around a shadowy room, the title clicked. After all, book cover art is made to fit the title in many respects, so why can't it work the other way round?
Like with the other two, try this method out as well. Hopefully one (or more!) will work for you, and you'll have a book title to be proud of in no time!
How do you come up with your book titles? Any further tips (I'm always open to learning about new ways!) What is your favourite book title, of your own work or someone else's?
Let me know in the comments below, and good luck with your writing!