The Glory of a Name

The old proverb “Don’t judge a book by it’s cover” is simply, well, not true. The only time a person is driven to a book based on the content first, is when the book comes as a recommendation. If you are browsing books in a bookstore trying to find a particular area of knowledge – you choose books based on three things; title, subtitle, and the cover art. The truth hurts. So does trying to title a book in progress!

If you have been following me on Twitter, you may have picked up on the notion that I am writing a book. The entire purpose of this blog is for me to have an ongoing area where I can practice, and improve upon, my writing. Of course, the last few months my blog hasn’t received any traffic from me, therefore, my overall web traffic has begun to die. Blogs have a natural ebb and flow and unfortunately, lately, Techafina has been in the ebb phase. As I work on my book I hope to continue to write here as well because, I like my blog. Of course, I hope you do too. So if you are dismayed in the lack of posts lately, please don’t give up. I’m not going anywhere.

But, back to the topic at hand. Book titles…

As I have tried to figure out the “rules” in book naming, I have come across some excellent advice, and noticed some really bad patterns. A well named book will grab a reader’s attention – in 5 words or less. This is a tall order to achieve, and apparently, Daniel Defoe was not aware of this rule when he published Robinson Crusoe (the full title consists of more than 60 words). Keeping this in mind, why are there so many books named “How to learn x in y days” or “The Joy of z”?

Books that call out for me to pick them up have unique, creative names. I will pick up a book called Blink, or The Tipping Point, long before I will pick up a book with a “How to…” name. I don’t know, call me crazy, but I DO judge a book by it’s cover.

  • Scott

    I suggest “Captain Awesome's Awesome Guide to ____” for the title of most books.

  • Scott

    I suggest “Captain Awesome's Awesome Guide to ____” for the title of most books.

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