The top of Mount Gravatt is the point where we walked every day before the Himalayan trek for training. It was a bit of a joke because this altitude is 184 metres and at Sandakphu we were nearly 4000 meters. This walk was good for training. It wasn’t good for altitude. In the same way, you can finish a book, but not have the title!
One of the real reasons I like to walk is that it clarifies my thinking. I’ve finished the third draft of my book on my Himalayan trek. It’s gone to my accountability buddy and my beta readers are checking it out. I need to pick a title, because the next stage of my book publishing journey is to get the cover. I can’t do the cover. I’m not a graphic designer or an artist. I don’t know why I’m not a graphic designer and artist.
My mother was a prolific painter and so is my brother is a good artist but I seem to have not pulled that gene. I need to get my book cover designed professionally, and I need to tell them the title.
Why is the title important?
Shakespeare says “What’s in a name, a rose by any other name will be as fair” but in other places he says the the poet’s mind gives to “Airy Nothings a Local habitation and a name”. So if the Bard himself is confused, how much more me?
That’s what I’m looking for for my book, a local habitation and a name. A title that appeals to readers. On Amazon the cover and title’s first function is simple and yet complex:
- Stop the scroll
- Look at the subtitle,
- Click the book
In this entire odyssey I’m trying to appeal to the right people. I’ve written out a hundred benefits which people would get from reading my book. I’ve also written out a hundred reasons why I wrote the book. If you want to write a book, you need to have a hundred reasons why. This is one way of aligning with your target reader.
Finding your readers
My book launch group is called Himalaya as at Sixty. One person asked, of why don’t you call it Himalayas at sixty, and another friend said because no one will read it. At sixty I want to lie down and sleep I do not want to trek the Himalayas! So there’s a kind of fine fine balance you need to make.
The title of my website is www.skywalked.com. I set that up before I left and that is where I’ve posted, blogged. I’ve posted some information about my trek over there and some pictures. To tell you the truth I used skywalked because at that time I was trying to get a bit of traffic from the new Star War movie.
A book is not going come alive until it’s read. I need the right reader. I don’t necessarily want people who are interested in crochet or or dog breeding, for instance. Yeah so while those two are very worthy occupations they may not be the type who want to take off and climb the Himalayas. That’s the reason why title is the thin edge of the wedge to leverage the book in front of the right readers.
People do judge a book by its cover
That is the truth of the matter, and if you are on Amazon all you’ve got is this tiny spot which has to get people to stop. People are not going to read a long title in 1 second. It needs to be something which jumps out, a title which bites people and hooks them.
The title has to give people something, it has to promise a solution. If it’s a fiction book it has to promise to entertain them and to excite them. If it’s a nonfiction book it’s got to be a solution. The solution for my book is to how to walk the Himalayas if you are not a super fit athlete. It was also a dream of mine since I was 16 and I was not allowed to trek it. Life is too short not to do the adventures which you wanted to do. And the amount of space Amazon gives you is too little to write a big title
Today I don’t have a lot of time because I have one of my major whys with me. I’ve got my granddaughter Bella staying with us today and I’m not going to have any time to do any work because I’m going to spend time with her. If Bella is with me there is nothing else, I’m going to be totally totally present to her. I’m not going to be thinking of titles or subtitles. I’m going to be playing with her. One of the major reasons to write a book when you’re a grandmother is to pass on your legacy to your grandchildren, so they’ll know you as you were at your prime and not later.
Bella is three now, by the time she is 30 I’ll probably be gone or I’ll be really doddering. Or on the other hand being me I might be climbing in the Himalayas at 90. I don’t want my grandchildren to remember me as an old woman, I want to write the book so they remember me as an adventurer, as an author.
Thanks for being part of my Himalayan journey.