Browse through the titles in the bestseller section of any bookstore and just read some of the titles without opening the book. High-priced people are hired by book publishing companies to come up with a title or “headline.” You see book publishing is a big business; therefore a lot of contemplation goes into making these titles as commercially viable as possible. Many well-known and highly successful books started out with other titles. According to Dan Poynter, the father of self-publishing:

• Catch 18 became Catch 22.
• Tomorrow is Another Day became Gone With The Wind.
• Trimalchio in West Egg became Fitzgerald’s The Great Gatsby.
• Something that Happened became Steinbeck’s Of Mice and Men.
• Blossom and the Flower became Peyton Place.
• The Rainbow Book became Free Stuff For Kids.
• The Squash Book became the Zucchini Book.

While doing your recon, observe how the other browsers pick up a book, scan the front and back cover, then put it down again before going to the next one. The entire process takes perhaps two seconds. That’s all the time you have to make a lasting impression on a potential reader. In these two seconds, you must literally appeal to three of the five senses—touch, sight, hearing, and metaphorically, the last two, taste and smell.

1) Touch: Touch also means “that sense by which anything material is perceived by means of physical contact.” Figuratively, your title must allow itself to touch or be touched by being relatable to your readers or having some type of influence on them.

2) Sight: When a possible customer first comes in contact with your book’s title, it is usually by seeing it on the front cover. So your title must possess appealing aesthetics.

3) Hearing: Business guru Jim Rhone says in order to have effective communication, one must “Have something good to say, say it well, and say it often.” Your title might be heard often, but will it be good, and will it be said well?

4) Taste: If a person stumbles over the words, it adds difficulty in marketing your book. Even if you are writing only for family and friends, and you are giving away your book for free, there is still an element of marketing. Keep that always in your thoughts.

5) Smell: Your title should give off an aroma—metaphorically speaking. It should project “a distinctive quality or atmosphere.” If the aroma the title emits suggests very little thought or concern was given in this area. Then the observer will assume the rest of the book is done on the same premise.

Out of 20 books on a recent Publisher’s Weekly Bestseller List, five had two-word titles; one had a one-word title, three had five-word titles; four had three-word titles; five had four-word titles; one had a seven-word title and one had an eight-word title. With the help of Book Title Generators, it does make this task a little less arduous but gives the use of your imagination very little exercise. However, at the end of the day, most execs at major publishing companies believe the simpler and shorter the title, the better. As always…use your words wisely.

Thank you for your continued readership and support. Until next week…Keep on punching those darn keys! Blessings and Peace!

©Rhema International. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission, from this blog’s author and/or owner, is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Rhema International.

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