I've never been great at picking out titles, but I do try to make unique titles for my stories. I thought I had some great titles for 3 of my stories. But unfortunately they were already taken by other authors who publish with my publishing house, Entangled Publishing, or different houses. Either way, I was left with a dilemma. I have to re-title 3 of my manuscripts. And I'm sad because I really loved my already taken titles.
My critique partner, Pam Mantovani, encountered a similar problem with her recently sold book to Belle Books. Her title was already taken by another book at that house. Together we searched for new titles for the story that reflected it well. We'd come up with a fun title, search for it on the Internet and boo... already taken! Finally her publisher/editor came up with a great new title for the story.
The titles do matter. They hook the reader, right? And they give a taste of what the story might be about, double right? I guess so. I go through my RT Review magazine and check out all the category series and contemporary single title stories' titles and some of them do give me a clear picture, while others not so much.
So how important is a title? I think it's important, but I also think a great back cover blurb is important. The cover needs to impart the spirit of the story, too. But I really think that beyond all of that, the contents within the cover and the back cover are the most important of all.
What do you think? Do you pick out books based on the titles? What is your criteria when selecting a new book to read?