Titling Books is Hard. Sometimes.

Thank you Keyanna Butler for this adorable graphic!

Thank you Keyanna Butler for this adorable graphic!

How Sarina Spent 3 Months Trying to Name a Book: a Short Story

Well, three books. But I wanted my True North series to reflect the orchards, the heartbreak and ALL THE FEELS. And I wanted to name the (first?) three at once.

On my way to victory I came up with some truly horrible titles. Real stinkers. Some were dull. Others were pretentious.

Stuck and confused, I emailed all my author friends for help. As i went through iteration upon iteration of titles, my patient buddies were all getting burned out on the question. 

As was I.

So I gave up for a little while. The file on my computer continued with the name "Vermont book #1." And then something magical happened! I relaxed and just wrote the durned book!

As I wrote it, the word bittersweet kept coming up. Bittersweet is the way Audrey feels about walking away from Griffin. And bittersweet is a kind of apple used in cider--it has a really high sugar content, but too many tannins to be any good in a pie. It's a special kind of apple, cherished by cider-makers and hated by others.

So, duh.

Can I introduce you to the titles of my three True North books?

1. Bittersweet

2. Steadfast

3. Keepsake*

*An apple varietal! See what I did there? :)

Now, compare and contrast. Yesterday my editor at Penguin emailed to say that the "copy team" had been brainstorming titles for my second book about the Brooklyn Bruisers. So she included a list.

I perused. I considered. I added a few to the list and gave her my feedback. A bit later, after another chat with her peeps, they told me their favorite. 

The process took an hour. One. Hour.

The moral of this story: copy teams are awesome! Oh--and it's more fun to title a book if you've already written it.

Sarina BowenComment