So by now maybe you know that I’m putting my new book Edit Me! How to Find, Hire & Work with an Editor on the market in a few days. This is actually my fourth self-published book, so I was pretty confident I had the whole process down.
Which was almost the case. You want to hear about one really silly thing I did—or rather, didn’t do?
I put all of about 30 seconds into coming up with the title Edit Me! And then, somehow, even though I know better, I completely failed to find out if there were any other books with that title. And sure enough, there is another book called Edit Me, and sure enough it’s about editing. (Oh, and a quick Google search turned up a wiki hosting platform also called Edit Me—probably not a competitor, but I still really should have checked.)
Now, duplicate or similar titles happen. One famous example is Between Shades of Gray, a historical novel about a Lithuanian girl relocated to a Siberian work camp during WWII, which hit the shelves—and the bestseller lists—just a few weeks before Fifty Shades of Gray, about a modern American girl having kinky sex with a hot billionaire.
Needless to say, they appealed to different audiences.
Fortunately, the other Edit Me is more about how to edit than who to hire and is relatively light on the kinky sex (though apparently not completely lacking in it). However, the fact that it’s been out for almost two years leaves me with no excuse for having the exact same title. An identical or almost identical title can be at best confusing for readers; at worst, embarrassing for one or both authors.
So here’s today’s lesson:
Before you commit to a title, and definitely before you commit to a cover with that title on it, do a few quick searches on Amazon and Google to see if your title is already being used—and if so, how.