How to Title Your Middle Grade Novel

I'm currently struggling to title a middle grade novel coming in 2021, so I thought I would share some links that have been helpful to me -- though we haven't settled on anything yet! I'll keep you posted. :)

1. THE BESTSELLER CODE: Anatomy of the Blockbuster Novel by Jodie Archer and Matthew L. Jockers. Basically the book shares the results of research on several years of (adult) bestseller lists to determine what qualities these books share.

There are a few great pages devoted to titles. Among other things, I learned that articles matter, i.e. "THE" XX is better than "A" XX. Also, if you put a place name in the title then readers expect said place to pretty much BE a character.

2. Naming Your Novel: How to Choose a Fiction Title - presents 6 things to consider.

3. The Well-Storied podcast - "How to Title Your Novel"

4. NY Book Editors - "How to Come Up with the Perfect Title" (includes some questions to ask yourself about your novel)

... and finally, just for fun: here's a post that includes a bunch of links to Book Title Generators.

GLHF  -- gaming speak for "Good Luck Have Fun," which is pretty good advice for titling a book, if you ask me!
Irene Latham lives on a lake in rural Alabama. Winner of the 2016 ILA Lee Bennett Hopkins Promising Poet Award, she is the author of hundreds of poems and nearly twenty current and forthcoming poetry, fiction and picture books from publishers including Penguin Random House, Macmillan, Lerner, Boyds Mills, and Charlesbridge. Her books have been recognized on state lists and honored by NEA, ALA, NCTE, SIBA, Bank Street College and other organizations.


  1. What great resources. Thanks Irene. Good luck with finding the perfect title for you WIP.

  2. Thanks, Irene! You really did your homework (and mine!).

  3. These are pretty great, Irene... Just looked at number two on your list, and yup, it nailed it....


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