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.
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.