What’s in a Title?
Nothing, if you don’t want to attract readers or if you want to give readers the wrong message. But If you want to attract readers, you need a juicy hook, and a good title is that hook.
As a reader, you know that the title is what persuades a reader to open a book. Without an appropriate title, the reader moves on to another book, possibly not as good a book as the one you have written, simply because something about the title and the cover design appealed to them more than your book title and design.
People DO judge a book by its cover.
Don’t think that a short, catchy, punch-of-a-perfect title is easy to find.
Some titles come through a dream. Other titles can come from a person particularly talented in thinking up great titles. Usually, finding a great title takes time. It took me almost 9 years. Mama mia!
So, what does a title really matter when most titles are subject to publisher input or change? It matters! You still need a title that “sells” the book idea to a publisher. A working title is essential.
As an example, here is a sampling of some of my former titles and why I did not ultimately choose them:
Home of the Gentiles
“Home of the Gentiles” is a metaphor for Christian church. I love this title, but it is too obscure; i.e., meaningless to the general reader.
Too much focus on the toxic-faith aspect of my story when the bigger theme is the emotions and experiences that made me vulnerable to toxic faith.
Same as above.
Emotionally & Spiritually Handcuffed
I have experienced periods of emotional and spiritual “suppression,” but the majority of my faith journey has been positive.
A Search for Love and Acceptance in Church
Does not portray the pain in my story.
A Search for Love and Acceptance in (Abusive) Churches
Too negative. Turns people off.