Tag Archives: book titles

Writing

The Name Game

When you’re writing a book, you have to call it something. Because “that story I’m writing…no, not that one, the other one” gets unwieldy to say.

Grow, for a long time, was known as “Forester’s story”. In fact, the Word doc is still called “The Story”. As I typed the story (Ha!) up, I chose a working title. I still like that first title, but it wasn’t quite right. About 6 months later I came up with another idea. But it wasn’t right either. Too jokey. And then another year later I settled on Grow.

Man, I’ve been working on this damn story for so long! Actually, way, way long. I first wrote about these characters when I was fifteen.

Grow seemed to fit really well because Forester likes growing stuff, and he, Ally, and Duncan all get a chance grow (emotionally or whatever) during the story. This, of course, is still a working title and may change. Again.

For Spellbound Haze, I brainstormed a title while I was still in the writing-it-longhand phase. The MC’s name is Hazel, and I knew I had great pun potential because one of the plot points is repeated memory loss (a mental haze, if you will). So I wrote a list of titles in the form of “Haze of Something” or “Something Haze”. I tried to convey the fact there’s magic involved and find something that fit the urban fantasy genre. “Spellbound Haze” was the 11th one I came up with. I liked it. Now I have to make every title in the series deliciously punny. Which is not as easy as it sounds. But first I have to finish the damn book.

The Savage Trilogy was a little easier. It features a special boarding school (yep, it’s one of those stories) which I named after one of NZ’s greatest and best known prime ministers, Michael Joseph Savage. That surname has so much potential, especially since it turns out things aren’t all they seem at the school. I called the first book Savage Dreams. And this was where I hit a snag.

I googled it. I hadn’t done that before. And I found out there’s already a book out there with that title. (It’s completely different, but still.) Which led me to discover a book title can’t be copyrighted (mostly). Though it can be trademarked. And you’d probably be dumb to call your book the same thing as one that’s really famous (say, Twilight) because it would just lead to confusion.

Rights of Writers gives a great explanation of Titles and the Law if you want to read more about it.

spark_booksWhich leads me to this duplication currently on my bookshelf.

Spark, Spark, and Spark. I swear I don’t choose books based on their titles.

And now I’ve typed spark too many times and it’s doesn’t look like a real word any more.

Right, that’s enough rambling about titles. I’m off to finish the damn book.