Please Help Me Brainstorm Book Titles






It’s officially official. And I finally found someone with Publishers Marketplace access to send me the announcement that appeared there about Reckonings (which is being published under my pseudonym K.C. Tansley)!

On to a cool bit of news, my editor (I will never tire of saying those two words) reached out to me and asked me to brainstorm new titles for Reckonings, my YA time travel murder mystery.

They sent me a worksheet that I’ve been working on all weekend–I’m such a nerd. Anyway, I’ve got some possibilities, but I’d really love your help so I’m going to post my hook here and see what you guys think.

I need lots of possibilities to submit to the publisher. If they like a title you suggested, I will make sure you receive a free signed copy of the book and author goodies. And I’ll  do a Skype chat with you and anyone you want to invite.

So here’s the hook:

Forget what you’ve seen on Ghost Whisperer. Ghosts aren’t spirits waiting to cross over. If only it worked like that. Never heard a thank you from them. Ever. Because they aren’t like us. They are broken remnants of a human being. And they seek one thing: reckonings.

Kat Preston stopped believing in ghosts. Not because they weren’t real, but because they overran her reality. She learned to deny their existence every day. It was her only shot at a normal life. Until her junior year at McTernan Academy when a summer project investigating a 127-year-old wedding night murder mystery calls into question all the unbelievables—ghosts, spirits, time travel, curses, spells.

Evan Kingsley, the research partner she nicknamed Satan’s disciple, takes a scientific approach to everything, which doesn’t allow for the unbelievables. But that doesn’t stop Kat from being yanked through a portal. Or Evan from following her. Or them from awakening a week before the murder with their souls trapped inside the bodies of two wedding guests. As if sharing a body with a New England Victorian lady isn’t hard enough, now Kat must rely on Evan to help piece together what happened on the wedding night before it happens again. Caught between trying to prevent the senseless tragedy and needing to get back home, can Kat do both?

Any thoughts on possible titles? Toss anything you’ve got at me.

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56 Responses to Please Help Me Brainstorm Book Titles

  1. kathils says:

    My brain is mush–currently working on a title for the first CBC book myself. The hook sounds fantastic and HUGE congrats on the deal. You deserve it. 🙂

  2. Harliqueen says:

    Titles are always a struggle! Good luck with it, sorry I can’t help.

  3. Caught Between The Veils? Lol…. Wedding Veils 🙂 that is , lol .. I really have no idea… But like the sound of this book .. Good luck with a New Title Kourtney 🙂 xxx Hugs Sue

  4. 127 Years Dead
    The Soul Hosts
    Soul Switchers
    Something Old, Something Dead
    The Body Sharers
    The Time Trap Murder
    Wedded Death
    The Haunting of the Vows

  5. davidprosser says:

    How about something simple but promising Kourtney like ‘Through The Portal’.
    xxx Huge Hugs and loads of luck xxx

  6. Carrie Rubin says:

    Titles are not my forte. Some come to me easily; others I belabor for hours. I don’t have anything offhand, but I’ll keep it in mind. Sounds like a great premise!

    • It’s weird because Six Train and DM’s came really easily to me. Reckonings went through several as I queried and pitched and I really liked the last one so it’s even harder to come up with new ones that feel better! Thanks! 🙂

  7. Nope, been pondering while I made a coffee with no luck. I have a short story called Reckoning, so thought that one was pretty good 🙂 Congratulations though!

  8. Character names, I have plenty, but titles, unless I’ve read the story, it’s more difficult for me. Sounds like a lot of good suggestions so far. Good luck, Kourtney!

  9. Sandra Tansley says:

    A Race Against Death

    GhosTly Curse At Creighton Castle
    An Untimely Ruby

    Death Befalls The Radcliffe bride

  10. Pete Denton says:

    I like the idea! I’m not usually good at deciding titles, but I will mull it over and get to you if anything strikes me 🙂

  11. Congrats and good luck with the title, Kourt’!! I just posted a new painting and explained its title and why I thought I had a “flash of genius” but I don’t think you should follow my path and let Candy Crush inspire you. Nope, bad idea. Ahah

  12. jmmcdowell says:

    Titles are hard! Especially when someone asks you straight up to think of one. lol! 😀 I love the suggestions that have been offered so far, especially Vanessa’s “Something Old, Something Dead” and “The Haunting of the Vows.”

    I honestly think that if I ever finish a book and try to go traditional with it, I should hire her to write my hook and synopsis!

    • Especially with a series–I need to have continuity in titles. Vanessa really hit on some great ones. I really appreciate people tossing ideas around. I’ve enlisted, friends, family, and bloggers to just toss names at me. I figure something will hit me or trigger a moment of brilliance. I hope so anyways. 🙂

      I concur–she is a title generating guru!

  13. diannegray says:

    Only one word came to me when I read your hook – ‘Reckoning’

    The story sounds fantastic, best of luck 😉

  14. Way to go, Kourtney! Excellent news!

  15. Let me give this some thought, Kourtney. Have you considered doing a poll here on your blog?

  16. By the way — keep forgetting to mention this to you. I put your bookmarks out at our local public library branch. There is a container of bookmarks that sits near the computer pods, so I put the stack in there. Last time I checked, they were all gone!

  17. Ohhh it sounds like a fascinating read, Kourtney! Here are some titles, just off the top of my head:
    127 Years
    Murder Transported
    The Wedding Guests

  18. EllaDee says:

    I don’t know how you do this writer stuff, it makes my brain hurt.. but anyway for what they’re worth…
    Till death do us part
    To love and to cherish
    A day of happiness and sadness
    In times of light and darkness.

    • EllaDee the writing stuff is somehow easier than the marketing stuff. So write a book-sure, come up with a title–ugh my brain hurts. 🙂

      These are great suggestions, I really like the first one a ton too!

  19. Lori D says:

    This is a great idea. I’m having trouble titling my first novel. I may ask for suggestions on my blog when I’m ready.

    I have a twist on one of the titles someone else suggested. Maybe, “Haunted Vows.”

    Was there a reason why “Reckonings” didn’t work?

    • Thanks. I’ve seen authors do it on FB a lot. So I figured I’d give it a shot on my blog. 🙂

      I like it!

      No, I wish they had given me an idea of what was not working with Reckonings. I’m going to follow up with the editor and see if I can get more info on it this week. 🙂

  20. Mayumi-H says:

    A time-traveling, wedding night murder mystery sounds like grand fun! I have to say, I like Vanessa’s suggestion of, “Something Old, Something Dead.” That offers a lot of potential for mystery, scares, as well as some humor. (I don’t know why, but I get a Nick and Nora vibe from Kat and Evan.)
    You could twist it a little, too, to be “Something Borrowed, Something Dead,” to pull in the possession and death pieces. But, that might require too much free association.

    Good luck!

  21. Aquileana says:

    Hi Kourt … You have said

    “Toss anything you’ve got at me”.
    So here you have a couple of suggestions

    >”leakage spectra”

    >”vanishing ghosts”

    >”unexpected shadows”

    >”misty appearances”

    By the way , I think that the classical brief formula meaning : Adjective plus noun is almost infallible..

    Best wishes & hugs, Aquileana 😛

  22. 4amWriter says:

    I am terrible with titles, even blog post titles! But I really like some of the suggestions everyone has come up with so far. Vanessa’s suggestion of “Something Old, Something Dead” is great.

    Congrats on the book!!

    • It’s weird because the next two books, the titles came so easy and so certain. This one was my first and I guess I was still figuring out how to be a writer. 😉 Thanks! I really like Vanessa’s suggestion too!

  23. TBM says:

    Congrats. My editor always changes my book title so I won’t offer any suggestions and save you the pain and embarrassment.

  24. Sheila says:

    I really liked Reckonings. I’ll try to think of some more but for now all I can think of is The Uninvited. Congratulations – sounds like another great one!

    • LOL. Me too. I really felt like it was the title. But I like your suggestion a lot too! Thanks! 🙂 I’ve got a couple weeks to come up with them. The book crosses genres and it’s really hard to get a title to encompass all that.

  25. Wow, there are some great title suggestions in these comments. The only thing that’s come to me is, Broken Remnants of a Human Being. That’s what struck me when I read the blurb! Your book sounds fantastic!

    • Lynn, I completely agree! Oh, that sounds very cool. Great suggestion. Aw thank you. It’s an idea my best friend and I had as kids. I ended up writing it and it was pretty cool to see it come to life. 🙂

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