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How important is the title? Options · View
Posted: Saturday, July 06, 2013 3:41:37 PM

Rank: Forum Guru

Joined: 1/29/2012
Posts: 271
Location: Alternate Reality, United States
It's the first thing a reader sees, in the largest font, so of course it's important. Vitally important, I would say.

Especially in this pen name, my titles tend to be puns, wordplay, or tongue-in-cheek. The title goal has to be to catch everyone's eye and convince them to investigate further, and that seems to do the trick.

Beyond that, unless the title idea tickles me too much to give up, I usually do a Google site-specific search to see if that title already appears on the site. If it does, there's a good chance I'm going to change it. There's an even better chance if it's in the same category where I plan for my story to end up. In my experience, at least some degree of uniqueness helps draw in readers.

The next one I've got in editing double-fails that test, as there's a story with that title in the same category, but falls into the "won't give it up" niche.

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Posted: Saturday, July 06, 2013 4:00:33 PM

Rank: Active Ink Slinger

Joined: 6/6/2013
Posts: 26
Location: United States
As someone that reads extensively, the title is critical to catching my attention. If it pulls me in, I am likely to read it. Some stories online I just totally skip strictly on the title. May not be fair to the story but ...

Sex is emotion in motion.
Mae West

Posted: Sunday, July 07, 2013 7:48:34 AM

Rank: The Linebacker

Joined: 3/2/2011
Posts: 12,672
Location: Atlanta
The title, being the first impression, is very important. It is going to grab the reader's attention to entice them to read your story. Usually short is best, but something very creative and catchy can work as well. I sometimes have a list of potential titles and bounce those ideas off of friends. Other times I have a title 100% settled in my mind as I first start writing the story. The title is your story's image and selling point.

Posted: Sunday, July 07, 2013 11:01:05 AM

Rank: Lurker

Joined: 12/1/2006
Posts: 918,635
I usually go with what seems apt or provocative. I don't tailor the title to gain readers or votes.
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