Titles. All the writers i know hate them.
A title wants to:
- stand out – make your story, poem or book the one someone will turn to first from a list
- be memorable – so readers can recommend your work after it’s wowed them!
- be relevant, of course
- perhaps touch on more than one aspect of the piece, say a literal and a figurative reference
- not give away the ending
- … and yet hint at irresistible content
Half the trouble is that once the piece is written, you (if you’re like me) kind of lose interest, or maybe i mean the creative surge that brought the piece into being rarely sticks around for the thinking up of a title.
I must admit that finding [the title of my first novel] nearly drove me nuts! In the end, I wrote lots of words connected with the novel on a blackboard in my kitchen, where they caught my eye a thousand times a day. After a while, the words seemed to group and cluster, patterns emerged, and one day When Rooks Speak of Love was there.
When i have something long enough to justify that much effort (do i mean effort? time?) waiting for its title, i’ll try this.