Monday, January 23, 2017

Why is it so Hard to Name this Baby? (Finding a Title for My Novel)

No, I'm not pregnant, at least not with a human child. Naming my children was so much easier than naming my novel. It's sporting a temporary title for now, of course. But no one, and I mean no one, in my group of beta readers got the title. I purposely picked beta readers MUCH smarter than me. Soooo.... that means I need a new title!

Turns out, naming a novel is much more difficult than naming a baby. First of all, you shouldn't name your novel the same name as anyone else's novel.  There isn't any honor in naming your book after another famous work. Secondly, the title should actually be connected to your story in some way. No matter how much I like the sound of "Genny Carter's Underwear Drawer", it won't work because it has nothing to do with my story. Thirdly, while the title shouldn't give away the plot line, it should result in an "Ah ha" moment for the reader after they have finished the story.
 

My temporary title is "Genny Carter, The Getaway Driver". I thought this was quite brilliant, as my story is about a woman who is a victim of domestic violence and how she becomes an accomplice, in a sense, to her husband's abuse of their children. The story then goes on to examine the lives of the grown children and the dire consequences the abuse has for the entire family (including the abuser). 

While the mother doesn't actively abuse the children, she enables him. Hence the name, "The Getaway Driver". Get it? Getaway driver, just like a bank robber has a getaway driver. But unfortunately, the meaning was lost. Some of my readers hoped that the mom was going to get her children away from the abuse (as we would all expect a mother to do).  Now, I'm back to the drawing board, so to speak. My rewrite is completed, and I just need to slap a great name on this baby- hopefully a name that results in an "Ah ha" moment for the reader! 

If you have any suggestions, please feel free to share! I'll be very happy to give credit to the brilliant person that helps to name my novel. I'm dangerously close to giving it a name that sounds like a self-help book! 

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