The Struggle to Choose a Book Title #MFRWauthor #blog Challenge

This topic of this week’s MFRW 52-week blog challenge is “How I Choose a Book Title.”

And there is no easy answer to the question.

Each book is different. I’ve found some that lend themselves easily to a title while others are harder to pin down. When Anne Farrell and I wrote a contemporary romance together we went through several titles. Out of Control was our original working title, but when we sold it to Zebra for the Precious Gems line, they wanted to call it Dear Heart. Could anything be more generic? We suggested several other titles, and we all agreed on Private Affair. When Anne and I reissued the book, we changed the title to Worth The Risk to reflect the hero’s occupation as a race car driver. I think we ended up with a very cool cover, thanks to cover designer Lex Valentine.

In choosing a title, you obviously want it to have some connection to the story. But what you don’t want is a title so popular that everyone else is using it. I usually go to Amazon and look up titles I’m considering to see how often they have been used and by whom. I wouldn’t want to duplicate, say, a Nora Roberts title. Everyone would think they’d already read it!

Readers, what do you look for in titles? Or is the cover design more important. We authors would like to know!


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Soundtracks: Music To Write By #MFRWauthor #blog Challenge

MFRW blog challenge badgeIt’s WEEK 7 of the MFRW 52-week blog challenge, and this time the prompt is Music To Write By. In my case that means movie soundtracks.

Why soundtracks, you may wonder.

Because I can’t write and listen to songs. I stop writing to sing along, and that gets me nowhere. My first choice of writing music was The Pachelbel Canon with Ocean Sounds by Anastasi. Classical plus New Age. Very soothing and mesmerizing.

Last of the Mohicans CD coverThen, when I was writing my French & Indian War novel, Rogue’s Hostage, I discovered the Daniel Day Lewis movie of The Last of the Mohicans. I didn’t just love the movie, I loved the soundtrack, too, so I got the CD and listened to it while continuing to write the book. I loved it! The moment I heard that music, I was back in that time and place.

From then on I looked for a soundtrack from a movie similar to the book I was writing at the time.

For Regency: Sense and Sensibility
For Science Fiction: Stargate Atlantis
For my Fairy Tale romances: The Mists of Avalon

Somewhere in Time CD coverAnd another favorite is the soundtrack to Somewhere In Time by John Barry, one of the most beautiful and romantic soundtracks ever written.

The only problem I had was with the one contemporary, Worth The Risk. I finally settled on the soundtrack for The Rocketeer, which has a score I love. The problem with most contemporary soundtracks is that they use a lot of popular songs. And then I’m singing instead of writing. Some of my friends can write while listening to songs, but it doesn’t work for me.

I have tried using classical music, but prefer soundtracks for the recurring themes that give the overall score a continuity.

At home, I listen to the New Age Soundscapes channel on my TV when I need to relax. What do you listen to when you’re writing or just relaxing?


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