What’s in a name?

Filed under: Fun — marcia at 11:04 am on Saturday, February 23, 2008

I have a really hard time coming up with titles for things that I write, or naming things in general. After coming up with a killer first sentence, I forget that the first thing people will actually read is the damn title.

I normally end up with a boring title, erring on the safe side so I don’t have something laughable or cliche as the title. Don’t want to be too long. Don’t want to do the one-word thing. Don’t want to give away any surprises. Don’t want to be ham-handedly cryptic. There are the don’ts; what are the do’s?

I don’t know! Maybe you do. Here is my personal list of don’ts for various writing-related things … feel free to add some do’s (or more dont’s).

1) Literary Journals: If you are starting a new one, right on. You might not want to put the word “train” in the name. There are at least four something-trains or train-somethings. Why? I don’t know. Plus, at least two of the trains are really good. So you will look like a copycat. Bonus don’t: Literary/Art/Mythology references are tricky to do. Give yourself a solid pretentiousness check beforehand.

2) Blogs: If your title or description includes “musings” or “rants,” you’re not alone. Not even close to alone.

3) Books: I want to remember what your book is called! When it is a super-long name or has a super-long subtitle, I have a really hard time remembering it (and thus finding it). Help a sister out. (Check out Bookseller’s list of the oddest book titles of the year here.)



Comment by Robin

February 24, 2008 @ 10:38 pm

My favorite title goes to a movie:

“The Incredibly Strange Creatures Who Stopped Living and Became Mixed-Up Zombies.”

Comment by marcia

February 25, 2008 @ 12:32 pm

I saw that! Well, on MST3K … which made it even better.

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