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Author: Subject: Title Length for Books--Fiction and Nonfiction
Michy
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[*] posted on 5/22/2013 at 10:40 PM
Title Length for Books--Fiction and Nonfiction


So let's talk about book titles--don't give me industry standard or what you read anywhere or whatever--I'm looking for your personal opinion... okay: Length--do you prefer short, one word titles, or longer 3-5 word titles? How long is too long? Some nonfiction books can sometimes get ridiculous on the length of the titles, and then some fiction books are super short, one word titles--what's your take?

Does it matter to you if it's fiction or nonfiction as to how long a title is supposed to be?




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[*] posted on 5/23/2013 at 12:37 AM


I prefer short titles that adhere to the KISS rule. One to three words is usually my cup of tea, although Iím sure if I thought hard enough I could find some longer titles that I liked. I try to keep my titles rather short. A few big-author short titles that I like:

The Shining
The Stand
The Great Gatsby
Painted House
Books of Blood
The Hellbound Heart

Some slightly longer titles I like:

To Kill a Mockingbird
The Great and Secret Show
The Thief of Always
Something Wicked this way Comes
The Darkest Evening of the Year

In the end, Iím not sure it matters all that much as long as the title is original and reaches out to grab the potential reader.

Here are a few of my personal titles (some published, some in the works):

Gamble
Deathís Ride
Heartbroken Madness
The Empty Chair
The Unearthing
Fever Dreams





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Melanie
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[*] posted on 5/23/2013 at 07:37 AM


I think if titles get too long, they begin to sound almost comical. In non-fiction, plenty of books have titles and subtitles that explain things more, which is fine I guess. It makes more sense for non-fiction to have longer titles to me.

The longer titles Derek listed aren't really long, in my opinion.

http://www.goodreads.com/list/show/2667.Books_with_Really_Long_Titl...

Most of the ones on here that are actually long are either kids books, or funny in some way.

Right now I'm struggling with adding "the" to titles or not. "Puppeteer" or "The Puppeteer?"




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Michy
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[*] posted on 5/23/2013 at 01:51 PM


I loved that link--some of those are outrageously long!

Come to think of it, you're right--a lot of books when I was in the third and fourth grade or so had really long titles that told basically what happened in the story with the main character's first name. Romona and Bezeesus Win the Day at the County Fair--type of thing. (made up title)





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Michy
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[*] posted on 5/23/2013 at 07:07 PM




I don't care...gimme whatcha got. Simple, complicated, whatever. Feed me some Green Eggs and Ham, or let me spend time with Anna Karenina, or take me on A Long Fatal Love Chase, or comfort me with The Mercy of Thin Air, or put me under The Brief and Frightening Reign of Phil. In the end, it's the story or the useful facts I'll remember and appreciate.

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