Finding the right title (or often not …)

If you’re anything like me then thinking up a title for a story is a pain in the buttocks. I’m rubbish at it. I wonder how other (proper) writers choose a title, and how much it really affects the sales of the story.

If I had my way I’d title everything like it was a B movie. I’m working on a rewrite at the moment about a near miss comet that fires off some alien goo into the atmosphere, eventually growing into a kind of highly corrosive, terraforming substance (I know it’s been done before – but what hasn’t?). Anyway, I’m struggling to come up with a decent title, and all I can think of is something like… Attack of the Alien Moss from Space, or Killer Moss from Outer Space… Is there something wrong with me?

I suspect I already know the answer to that.

So it got me thinking about names and how they pull in a potential reader (or repel them like some of my attempts). What makes a good title? Should it be memorable and long like Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 2, or something solid and short like Prey? Or perhaps grabbing the potential readers’ attention would need something a little more erm… silky, like Mega Shark vs Crocosaurus?

 Personally I’d go with the latter.

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