Well, the clock is ticking and I've been busy 'polishing' the first 3,000 words of my novel (they're really shiny now!), plus the dreaded synopsis, for entry into this year's CWA Debut Dagger - for unpublished crime 'novelists.'
However, after dotting the 'I's and crossing the 'T's I thought it pertinent to get feedback on the 'running' title I've had from the outset. The book's premise is fairly simple in that a vigiliante is avenging the 'Hoodies' (thugs) who have impacted dramatically on his life, hence the title: 'The Hoodie Hunter.' This title clearly sums up the book...
...When I started to recieve my first snippets of feedback a common theme developed. People didn't care for my title. On The Mystery/Thriller Writers' forum on Facebook an American writer remarked: 'Why would anyone want to hunt sweat-shirts!!!' I did find this funny, but it got me thinking. Firstly the term 'Hoodie' is British. I know publishers invariably change the title, and parts of the book, once they cast there critical eyes over a manuscript, but it is important you're as content as can be with all aspects of your work beforehand so as to maximise your chances of success. A published friend of mine informs me that agents invariably don't bother reading manuscripts if the title doesn't grab their attention.
I've learned that titles are extremely personal and can obviously affect the nuts and bolts of the writing, especially when the original idea stems from the title as mine did.
So having had a complete rethink I came up with a few alernatives to The Hoodie Hunter, whereby I wanted to convey the mood of the book with a catchy title.
Please check out my list and feel free to comment:
A Man Scorned.
My favourite is the last one and unless something dramatically changes this week then that is what my Novel will be entitled...that is until the publishers cast their expert gaze on it (dream on, Col!!!).
A Happy New Year to you all (all three of you!).