Friday, September 7, 2018


I have reached a point in Ugly and the Beast where the title actually makes sense.  Jeni's ugly and now we have a beast.  I didn't plan it this way.  I had the title and I was scrambling to think of a way to make it make sense.  And when I wasn't thinking about it, it sort of fell into my lap. 

Titles are like that sometimes. 

I have no clue what Cinder Ugly's story is going to be.  This series may be the first time I've ever written books to title.  For the genie books, I had title ideas and I just sort of picked the one that fit after I wrote the books. 

Well, that's not strictly true.  The first book was originally called Djinnocide.  But that title seemed confusing to other people and it wasn't really exiting any agents and then I got sick of myself and querying and... Well, Wish in One Hand seemed appropriate.  The other titles followed the formula, but as I said, they were picked from a list I created.

Dying Embers was originally called Manhunter.  But there's a movie by that name and it wasn't really blowing my skirt up.  So, before I even started querying it, I found a better title.  I had a devil of a time coming up with Fertile Ground after it was written.  Early Grave was a bit easier.

Don't even get me started on finding a title for BloodFlow... err, Blood Flow... err, Project Hermes.  If you've been around a while, you'll have heard the story of changing a title AFTER the book is published.  On the bright side, customer feedback indicates Project Hermes is a much better fit.  I wish I'd just called it that to begin with.  Ugh.

My first book went through so many title changes it would make you weep.  Second book, too.  If they ever make it into the publication schedule, I'll probably keep their current titles - Fear Itself and Nature of Fear respectively.

It's definitely easier to come up with a title when you have series parameters.  Having the first Dennis Haggarty novel as Accidental Death made choosing a title for Natural Causes a breeze.  Then again, there aren't too many other terms that fit for future novels.  We'll see what happens with those in the future.

I'm not sure what my title future will bring.  I have an idea for another SCIU book, but no clue what it might be called.  The same with the next DH book.  Oh well, I'll figure it all out when the time comes.  Maybe.  I hope.

How are you at titles?  Ever read a book where you never did figure out what the title meant in relation to the book? 


  1. I normally let the title settle after I'm well into the book. Sometimes, though, the title pops into my head and then the story follows. With the Nightrider books, I have a whole list and I pick one--sooner or later--that fits the story. The Red Dirt books get working titles that will change because...editorial and marketing. The only one that didn't was the first, COWGIRLS DON'T CRY. Not sure how that one slipped through. LOL Penumbra Papers titles give me fits. I'm looking at LEATHER AND LACE for the next one, a Sade and Sinjen story. It won't be as long as the others, more an interim long novella. Maybe. Anyway. The only titles that seemed to come naturally were/are the Moonstruck books. LOL Maybe I should just stick with the Wolves. ;)

    Have a great weekend. Go fishing. :P

    1. Aww, but if you just stick with the Wolves, I won't get to read all the other wonderful stuff you write about. So, no. ;o)

      I might fish tomorrow. We'll see how it goes.

  2. I had fits with the first book I put out there. It started out Feda's Anchor, but I changed it to Necromancer's Anchor. Neither one got much notice. Le sigh.

    I had the titles early on for my Child series. The only trouble was, my trilogy turned into seven books. LOL!

    Some days I love thinking up titles. On others, I hate it. But the writing seems to go easier if I have a strong title in mind, even if it gets changed later.

    1. I have a copy of Feda's Anchor. The title works. I think Necromancer's Anchor also works. It makes me sad it's not selling better.

      LOL, I'm glad it turned into seven books! More for me to read!

      Same here. Some days it's good and others it sucks. Ah, such is the life of a writer.