Sunday, February 15, 2015

Changing the Name of the Game

When I first came up with the idea of writing a series, I had created a title for the series and the individual books.  I thought that the name best represented the books and what they were about.  For three years I have been writing these books and have identified them by these titles.  The name had become ingrained in my subconscious.  The problem came when it was time to publish the first book. 

When we started designing the cover, my husband suggested that the title was too common.  Since I write paranormal romance, there are a lot of similar themes across the genre.  Everyone writes about ghosts, vampires, werewolves, zombies, angels, etc.  My book involves all of them, but primarily focuses on fallen angels.  If you do a Google search on any of these themes, you will find scores of books with similar titles.  You can't throw a rock without hitting the word "angel", especially "fallen angel".  I was disheartened to realize that I needed a new title, one that still captured the essence of the book, but was easier to find amongst all the carbon copy titles.  

I wallowed in my grief for about two minutes, and then I pushed ahead.  I knew it was the right decision if I wanted to be noticed.  So for the next ten minutes, we were in a panic trying to come up with an alternate title.  We googled different ways of saying angel, apocalypse, Hell, and harbingers, but we got nowhere fast.  I was still stunned, so I wracked my brain searching for a better title. It was then that a phrase was thrown out by my husband.  It was a simple phrase, but it was relevant to the story, just in a smaller way.  As soon as he said the title, I had a fluttering sensation in the pit of my stomach.  The more I tested it and rolled it around my head, the more I accepted the new name.

We quickly googled the title and couldn't come up with anything of significance.  I breathed a sigh of relief and watched as the title appeared on the cover of my book.  While I still missed the old title, I knew it was for the best.  I didn't think it would be as successful if I had stuck to my guns and kept the old title. 

As writers, we tend to fall in love with our characters and our story lines and are resistant to change when a suggestion is made.  The problem comes when we are too stubborn to admit that the change could make a huge difference.  I'm thankful that I was in a flexible mood that day and was willing to listen since I do believe it will make a difference.

I still have to get used to the idea that the "Fallen Angels of Temptation" has now become "The Third Throne", but it's slowly sinking in.  Now I just have to change my internal working documents on my future books, and I will be set.

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