Does Your Title Earn an “A” or a “D-“

Do you spend a lot of time coming up with your title?  I have a writing buddy who runs lists of possible titles past her critique group.     Dozens of possible titles.

Not me. 

I’m really impressed if I come up with  one title I can live with.  Dozens?  Not unless I find a title tree.   

A writing buddy recently showed me Lulu Titlescorer (http://www.lulu.com/titlescorer).  The program was created when statisticians analyzed approximately 50 years worth of best sellers by their titles alone.  Obviously, the title alone doesn’t drag a a book to best seller status, but is there something these titles have in common?

Just playing around, I plugged in one of my favorite titles — Wolf Guilt.  I answered the required questions.  This title scored 63.7%

Next I plugged in one of those titles you stick on the manuscript because you have to have something to put above your by-line and in the header — Rat Race.  That score?  69%. 

So then I tried out a few more.

Malcolm MacGowen, 45.6%.

Ocean Blue and Jungle Green, 26.3%.

The Princess and the Garden, 55.4%

Ink and Paper, 10.2 %.

I’m not sure if this tells me anything at all.  I don’t think “Ink and Paper” is significantly worse than “The Princess and the Garden” as titles go.  But it may be something fun to play with.

–SueBE

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