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Bad at Titles

There's a great scene in the movie Julie and Julia when Julia Child's book editor is working with index cards on a wall to decide Julia's book title. She maneuvers the index cards, going from left to right and back again. She crosses out letters. She writes over existing words. It's like a puzzle being put together in front of Julia's eyes. And Julia sits there, seemingly tired or not understanding the process or importance of creating a title. But when Julia's asked what she thought of her editor's final title and Julia expresses her indifference to the process, her editor says, "Julia, that will not due," informing her of the need to create an alluring title that will sweep the nation's homemakers by storm and get them to buy her book.

I need Julia's editor.

Titles and covers are really tough for me. At one time, I was a pretty decent photographer and photo editor, but when I undertook writing, I gave that up to focus on building my writing skills. I took 8 months off from writing last year after publishing Spellbound. I needed the time to reevaluate my place in self publishing. The job of self publishing is all consuming. It takes time and mental focus to write a story. Then we have to get it edited. Somewhere throughout the process, we have to decide the title of the book. Lingering in our minds is the cover, which is critical to visibility because readers do judge a book by its cover--especially in romance. It's just a fact. Finally, there comes a point when we must market the book for sale, which needs all those pieces finalized.

Recently, I've finished writing a novella. It was one that I had started a long time ago. The characters are from my "Boundless" series, specifically Unbound, book 2. I'd like to release this book in March of 2018. However, I can't find a title. I wrote words on index cards. I've moved them around my desk. I've crossed out letters and added letters. I've wracked my brain. I've slept on it. I looked for signs everywhere. Ugghh. But I can't decide on a title.

All that is to say, I can't have a completed book cover without a final title. Much less that I can't find a great stock photo to stop the hearts of book buyers and make them purchase the book in droves. But I digress--that's a subject for another post.

A new year has brought me newfound motivation to write. I have a few projects for 2018 in mind. My goal is to write 4 novellas and one novel. I'm also writing a screenplay that's not romance related. If I'm successful with this screenplay, I will schedule myself to write a romance film. It's one of my dreams to see my film play on one of 5 cable channels that produces and screens such films.

Besides, my late mother's favorite Astrologist, Walter Mercado, stated that in 2018 Taurus: "Everything you lost in past years will be returned with profit. Money will fall from the sky like manna. Dreams that seem impossible will come true. You will love and be loved like in a soap opera." Now, what Romance Author doesn't want to love and be loved like in a soap opera? So I must ensure to be open to the stories that will make it so. And that starts with a good title.


If you have not picked up a copy of Stained Glass Shards by Rosemary Rey, you can acquire a free download on Smashwords. Eventually, the book will be distributed on iTunes, Barnes and Noble, and KOBO. This is a limited time free download, so offer may not be available at the time you read this. A review on Smashwords, Amazon, and Goodreads will be greatly appreciated--no matter your thoughts.

Do you like Novellas? Does the title and/or cover of a book help you decide to buy? Do you prefer a shirtless man on the cover? Do you prefer objects related to the story on the cover? How do you discover the books you buy?

Rosemary Rey

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