Thursday, February 11, 2010

Your Help Is Needed

Sometimes titling books so that they sound unique and appealing becomes a great challenge.

When the author feels stuck, I usually jump in and start by reading the book (or series) proposal with highlighter in hand. I pick out all the interesting words pertaining to the story.

Very briefly, this book is about the gang formed by Henry Berry Lowrie at the end of the Civil War in Rebeson County, NC. Two brothers join the gang late in its existence. Along the way, they encounter two women--one fair in face and temperament becomes a captive, the other as beautiful and wild as the land becomes a raider. Though they've never met, the women are the missing parts of a secret that will bind them together for eternity.

Key words:
outlaw
swamp
captive
plunder
gang
brothers
secret
backwoods
desire
hope
war
Scuffletown
wild
raiders
bandits
debutant
hope

Then I start matching up words.

The Raider's Bride
The Captive Bride
The Swamp Captive
Scuffletown Secret
Plundered Hope
Raider’s Hope
The Backwoods Outlaw

Out of the matched words I look to see if anything stands out as a great title.

With a series, I have to do this for each book and then try to get a title grouping that we feel would be the best for marketing the series.

This is where you come in. Marcia Gruver is writing the Backwoods Buccaneers series. The first releases in Spring 2011. The series basically is about three generations of "land pirates" spanning from North Carolina, to Mississippi, to Texas, who confront the inescapable wages of sin and greed.

We are looking for the most appealing group of titles. Please vote for one group. And to reward you for your time and opinion, we'll draw three names from the comments to send Marcia's complete Texas Fortunes trilogy to.

Group A:
Backwoods Heart
Natchez Hope
Uncertain Prize

Group B:
The Swamp Outlaw
The Natchez Bandit
The Treasure Hunter

Group C:
Raider’s Heart
Bandit’s Hope
Hunter’s Prize

I'll close the drawing on Monday the 15th. Thanks for your help.

24 comments:

MamaBear said...

I had a hard time choosing between A and C, but in the end I'm going to go with A.

I chose books based on the genre and then read everything I can get my hands on that fits into my favorite category (Christian Historical Romance category). This makes the title VERY important because I don't read the back covers EVER. If the titles catch my eye, I'm sold.

Thanks for sharing how you come up with the titles and for the give-a-way!

Virginia C said...

Hello! Happy Valentine's Day! I would definitely choose group "C":

Raider’s Heart
Bandit’s Hope
Hunter’s Prize

Short and succint, each suggestive of a romantic rogue with a loving soul.

gcwhiskas at aol dot com

Connie Stevens said...

In groups A and B, the first two titles allude to a location, but the third doesn't. In group C, I'm sorry but every time I see the name Bandit I think of a dog, so Bandit's Hope would be....a bone? Also, the possessives in group C just didn't ring my bell. I think I'm leaning toward GROUP B because they tell me more about the stories.

The Write Life said...

Hands down, Group B.

Second choice, Group C.

Last choice, Group A.

I love the rogue-ish-ness of Group B, which is why I picked it. That might be the rebel in me, though. LOL.

Group C titles sound much more redeemable and offer hope, so your nicer readers might prefer to pick up books with those titles.

Paige Dooly

Becky said...

Connie, you are right about the location in Group A. It is part of my issue with the group. But "Uncertain" is the town name. The other option was to say "Piney Woods" which is too long.

Keep the votes and comments coming.

I'm working on another series of titles for Brunstetter, but I'm not sure we'll need your help. :)

Renee (SteelerGirl83) said...

Definitely Group C! I don't think the other titles flow off the tongue as nicely! Please don't enter me I already have all 3 books! :-)

xoxo~ Renee

Erica Vetsch said...

Group C's titles would make me pick them up off the shelf to read the back covers.

Edna said...

Please enter me into the drawing

I think I like c

I have your button on my blog http://edna-myfavoritethings.blogspot.com/

I follow you on google

mamat2730(at)charter(dot)net

Aaron McCarver said...

Hey Becky,
For me it would depend on what you have in mind for the covers. If you want a woman on each cover, I think you should go with the titles of Group A. If you want a man on each cover, I would go with Group B. Group C, which is my choice, would work with either just a man on the cover or a couple on each cover as with Marcia's previous books. Also, Group C is the only group in which I like all three titles. Which ever way you go, I am definitely looking forward to more books from Marcia. Her historical detail is wonderful, and the setting sounds so intriguing and different. By the way, I have the three books, so please do not enter my name. I want to see someone else get these great stories.

Susan Page Davis said...

Group C for me. Group A was my LEAST favorite, but learning that "Uncertain" was a town name gave me new perspective. I still rank them C, B, A though. Can I get a reader's poll to name MY next batch of books? I'm horrible at titles! (You knew that, didn't you?)

Carrie Turansky said...

I like Group C. That is the most appealing to me. Sounds like a very interesting new series.

CHickey said...

I like group "C". Short, sweet, and to the point.

CatMom said...

I was torn between Groups B and C, but decided the Group B titles would definitely make me want to read the stories! ~ Blessings,
Patti Jo :)

Anonymous said...

I vote for group C! ~Donna K.
djkeoppel(at)yahoo(dot)com

Jennifer Johnson said...

Group B for me. :)

Jen

Vickie McDonough said...

This is fun!

I like group C and then B.

Happy Valentine's Day to all at Barbour!!

Could we have a poll like this sometime to pick cover designs or the hero or heroine for a cover?

Shanno Taylor Vannatter said...

I like C. Each one sounds good alone and they sound like a series together.

Diane Ashley said...

Fun topic! I like Group C the most, then B. Group A doesn't make me wonder about the stories, so I probably wouldn't pull them off of a shelf. Group B seems to be more about the hero, while Group C names both the hero and his heroine.

Merry said...

I liked group C the best. Catchy, easy to remember when I head to the book store.

worthy2bpraised[at]gmail[dot]com

Rose said...

Group C stood out for me. I would pick those titles up and read the back cover.

Rose

Barbara said...

If I have to pick an entire group, I guess I'd go with C. But the ones I liked the best were one in EACH group! The ones that grabbed my attention the most were:
Backwoods Heart (from A)
The Swamp Outlaw (from B)
and Bandit's Hope (from C)
So I unofficially vote for regrouping! :)
BarbaraACurtis@aol.com

adge said...

I like group C best. The others you kind of get tongue-tied over, whereas with C it's easy and to the point. gasweetheart211[at]netscape[dot]net

Keli Gwyn said...

My vote is for Group C.

Please don't enter me in the drawing. I have all three titles.

Becky said...

Thanks all. I believe we'll go with C.

And Erica is the drawing winner!