There are endless blog posts and workshops and seminars about character, plot development, voice, cutting passive voice, and all that authory stuff. There are entire websites devoted to spotlighting great covers and mocking the not so great ones. Authors jabber on about their muse and their depressing childhoods and how they had that moment in the shower where their entire novel came to them in a flash and they had to jump out all soaking wet to write it down.
But, you know what?
You don’t hear much about the titles of novels.
Yes, sometimes authors complain on social media about not being able to come up with a title. But the reality is, the title is just as important as everything else, yet it’s almost a throwaway item. An afterthought.
For me, that couldn’t be further from the truth.
I’m all about the title.
The vast majority of the time, I’ve come up with the title before I even have a concept of the novel. I will admit that sometimes the title is the concept. Take Roak: Galactic Bounty Hunter, for example. Can you guess what that one is about? Or a new project I’ll be working on in a couple of months, Mech Corps? Not exactly brain surgery to figure that one out.
Now we come to Stone Cold Bastards.
This title slammed into my brain and I instantly made a note on my phone. I loved the name. Stone Cold Bastards. It brought to mind Lee Marvin and The Dirty Dozen. It conjured images of 1970’s WWII grindhouse action flicks. I knew someone in that book had to be chomping on a cigar. Oh, they had to be.
But, what was it about?
Again, it was right there in the title. Stone and cold.
Oh, hell, yes! Gargoyles!
I hadn’t done a gargoyle novel before. I mean, I hadn’t even read a gargoyle novel before, but, damn if I wasn’t going to write one!
So, I channelled all that Lee Marvin cool swagger and set to work creating a world where a ragtag team of misfit gargoyles have to protect the last of humanity from the demon-possessed hordes that have taken over the world. I created a n apocalyptic setting and wrote in a genre that I wasn’t all that familiar with. I brought those bastards to life.
And all because three words popped into my head one night.
Folks can have all their character analysis and plot development and other authory stuff they want. For me, it all begins with a smashing good title.
Stone Cold Bastards is now available from these retailers:
About the Author:
Jake Bible, Bram Stoker Award nominated-novelist, short story writer, independent screenwriter, podcaster, and inventor of the Drabble Novel, has entertained thousands with his horror, sci/fi, thriller, and adventure tales. He reaches audiences of all ages with his uncanny ability to write a wide range of characters and genres.
Jake is the author of the bestselling Z-Burbia series set in Asheville, NC, the bestselling Salvage Merc One, the Apex Trilogy (DEAD MECH, The Americans, Metal and Ash) and the Mega series for Severed Press, as well as the YA zombie novel, Little Dead Man, the Bram Stoker Award nominated Teen horror novel, Intentional Haunting, the ScareScapes series, and the Reign of Four series for Permuted Press.
Find Jake at jakebible.com. Join him on Twitter @jakebible and find him on Facebook.