I ran across this question recently in a Facebook group, and noted there was a lot of opinion on it. Some authors are vehemently opposed to using chapter titles, while others adore them. So, what’s best?
Whether you design your own book exterior and interior or are working with a professional, here are a few precepts that will guide you towards a better product, and thus more sales.
Lesson Number One: Think of the Reader’s Experience
As you write your manuscript, in the back of your head you consider the emotional experience the readers will have as they progress through the story. So when you design the look of the final product, you should likewise take careful account of the process the buyers go through, from the first awareness that the book exists to that final, “Yes, I’ll buy it!” Which is about 2 – 15 seconds, so you’d better do a good job of it. Continue reading “Design Your Book to Sell”
Isn’t it odd how you never particularly notice something that’s a fairly regular occurrence, then suddenly you start to pay special attention to it and even question its purpose? Chapter titles are one of those things.
A book I read recently was a mammoth editing disaster. (Unfortunate, because the writing was actually quite promising and the story not half bad.) But it’s when you’re stumbling over so many errors that you notice the tiniest thing. Continue reading “Chapter titles…do we need them?”
From the name of your protagonist, your evil antagonist, your main and subsidiary characters and minions, your chapter titles (if you use them), right through to the title of your masterpiece – do the actual names matter? They obviously matter to the creator – the author – but do they really matter to the reader, to the general public? In my humble opinion: You bet your life they do!
Names have a certain ring to them, and unless you’re writing something that is deliberately farcical, or really tongue in cheek, like the old James bond movies, with Plenty O’Toole or Pussy Galore, you should use names that don’t immediately snap the reader out of their state of suspended disbelief. Continue reading “Names in Books – How Much Do They Matter?”