One comment that came up often in the Next Top Title Blogfest (with my titles and others) was that a title was "generic." Special thanks to Margo Berendsen at Writing at High Altitude, who suggested I could dig deeper and make one of my titles, The Reluctant Prince, more evocative. She asked what else is striking about my character besides being a prince? What other trait does he have that's more active, with more attitude.
I gave it some thought. When I have a question about my writing, I challenge myself to come up with ten answers. I allow crazy, dumb, out-there answers, as long as I get ten. That way I get past the obvious surface answers, and hopefully find something more creative.
Here goes. What's striking about my mc? He's
1 - a prince
2- an eldest son
3- the heir to the throne of his country
4 - a brother (this is a story about three brothers)
5 - a murderer
6 - lives as a peasant (unaware of his true ancestry)
7 - an abuse victim
8 - a loner
9 - a hero
10 - a survivor
What traits does he have? He's
1 - reluctant
2 - forgotten (by his parents - not really, but he feels that way)
3 - noble
4 - heroic
5 - defiant
6 - brave
7 - royal/aristocrat/blueblood/regal
8 - isolated
9 - abandoned
10 - independent
Keep in mind, the purpose of this post is not to find the perfect title for my book (though that would be nice...), but rather to elaborate on Margo's suggestion of digging deeper, finding a more evocative title.
So here are some variations on The Reluctant Prince:
The Forgotten Prince
The Abandoned Heir
The Peasant Hero
The Reluctant Son
The Peasant Prince
I'm actually not sure how good of a job I did of finding a more evocative title - this was hard! But it was a good exercise and I definitely have some more options here. The important thing is, I went a little further, past the obvious traits that first jumped to my mind, and found some titles with a little more depth.
I mentioned before that I have a lot of family obligations coming up this summer. With that in mind, I'll be taking a blogging break for the next three weeks. Honestly, I don't know if I'll last, I may have to sneak in a post here or there, and I'll definitely try to visit some blogs whenever I can. I'll see you in July!