What’s in a Name?

Quite a bit to quote Shakespeare. I’ve been thinking a lot about names, or more specifically, titles this week. My husband and I finished the first draft of the second Antique Hunters Mystery on Monday. Anne and CC nearly follow the path that we took this summer on our vacation.

We sent it to our publisher for her input. While we waited for her feedback, we started working on our next cozy mystery series about our 70-year-old neighbor, Grandma Pat. More to come about her later.

Initial feedback on the new manuscript from our publisher was good, however, she was not fond of our original title, Picked for Murder. I explained that we liked Picked due to the double entendre with antique picking and guitar picking. The story takes place in Nashville and involves musical antiques.

It was back to the drawing board. She offered some suggestions, and we bounced around ideas. Which led me to thinking — what does a title need to convey to readers? How much does it need to say about the story?

At the same time, we were working on the back cover copy. That is another challenge. How do you write intriguing copy that doesn’t give away too much of the story but still entices readers? We went back and forth, brainstorming ideas, some just ridiculous but fun. I liked Antique Road Kill or Killer Song, but my publisher was afraid those sounded too much like non fiction. We finally settled on Pickin’ Murder: An Antique Hunters Mystery.

I hope the title conveys what we need it to, and that readers will understand the meaning. I enjoyed writing this book and spending a little more time with Anne and CC. I am anxious to start on their next adventure and hope I can join them.

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