Wednesday, April 21, 2010


Ann Whitford Paul gives great tips for choosing a book title in Chapter 16 of WRITING PICTURE BOOKS.
While not every title will contain all of the characteristics, these tips are a smart place to start in evaluating possible choices. Is your title...
1. Brief
2. Catchy
3. Unique
4. Straightforward
Does it...
5. Express the Mood of the Book
6. Hint at What the Book Is About
7. Create Suspense
8. Give the Artist an Idea for the Cover Illustration
9. Include the Main Character's Name
10. Use a Catchy Line From Your Manuscript
Make sure...
11. The Title Doesn't Give Away the Ending
12. That A Child Can Easily Say It Out Loud (for picture books)
I selected my contest winner using these characteristics. WHEN SARAH WASN'T LOOKING is unique. A quick check of shows me that it hasn't been used before. That's important because I want readers to be able to find my book without searching too hard. WHEN SARAH WASN'T LOOKING also delivers on #'s 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, and 11.
All in all I think it's a great title choice. Thanks to all of my contest participants and to Barbara Krasner who suggested the winning title.

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