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Choosing Titles by Author Christine Warner

First off I’d like to thank Babette for inviting me to her wonderful blog!  Today I thought I’d share my thoughts on book titles.

Two Timing the BossI know some authors who can write a complete manuscript without having a title. They don’t even worry about that detail until they have the setting, plot, characters and all the scenes formed to culminate in that happily ever after.

Then there are those that have a working title and they might manage to change it several times over the course of the story, or it’ll follow them to completion and either stick or be changed.

Then there are some like me. J This sounds odd, but more often than not I come up with a title before I even think much about the story—characters or plot. There have been several instances that I’ve constructed the entire story around the title. I guess you can almost think of it as my author logline! lol

So, for me—as an author, a title is a very important part of my story and writing process. But as a reader, a title is one of the first things that draw me to a book. When I’m browsing the shelves at a brick and mortar the title is the first thing that’ll grab me because a majority of the time the cover isn’t facing out. So if I find the title interesting, I’ll pull it the book to check out the cover. From there I go to the back blurb and if I’m still intrigued I’ll flip open the book to read the excerpt and then it’s either a done deal and I’m buying it, or if I’m still hesitant I might select a few random pages and read some passages. I shop in a similar fashion when I’m searching out a good ebook J  Again that title is of utmost importance. If it doesn’t grab me then I’ll keep browsing.

A good title will tell you a little something of what the story is about without giving it all away. And I also like a title that kind of teases you a little. Maybe a double meaning type title J

Now I have a confession. When I wrote Two-Timing the Boss, my sexy contemporary romance, my title was far different. While driving into work one morning a title popped into my head and from those words I constructed a storyline. Fakin’ It With Farah was what I will refer to as my working title. I didn’t quite know at the time that’s what it was though—lol—I thought my title was a done deal J All I knew was that my story would be about a woman who would do anything to help out her twin. Even if it meant taking a job as assistant to a man she found morally bankrupt. But, in order to up her chances at securing this job she dressed in disguise.  See how that ties in? Boy, I think myself pretty clever don’t I?  hehehe

When I submitted the story to The Wild Rose Press they asked if I would be willing to come up with another title. Bummed at first, I went for the challenge. I mean I liked the title, but I wasn’t ‘in love’ with it…so I was game.

Now I came up with a few options. I shared them with friends, some critique partners and my editor.  After much chatter I made the final decision and chose Two-Timing the Boss.

But, for fun I’m going to share with you some of the other front runners:

Twice the Trouble

Fake Farah

Phony Farah

The Two Faces of Farah

Two Timing

Double Up

Now I knew I didn’t want to choose a title that another author had already used, so I did find Google rather helpful there and that helped narrow things down.

I’m going to give you more of a clue as to what the story is about by sharing a blurb and except and then I have a question for you J


To secure the funds for her twin sister’s surgery, Farah Smith will need to sacrifice her values as well as alter her appearance to work for a man she finds morally bankrupt. With a blonde wig and stilettos strapped on, Farah’s a clone of Keller Donovan’s harem of past assistants, insuring a position within his company.

The moment Farah and Keller meet, she realizes her most daunting task isn’t the job, but fighting an attraction to a man whose ruthlessness is as legendary in the bedroom as it is in the boardroom.

Disillusioned by his parent’s disastrous marriage, Keller Donovan is determined no relationship should have more than a six-month shelf life. But after he meets Farah Smith, all bets are off. Suddenly he wants more than a personal assistant and private bed warmer. Unfortunately, his offer of an affair doesn’t sit well with her, despite the stranglehold she’s put on his heart.

Can Farah and Keller find happiness and love over deceit and libido? Will the two embrace each other or hold fast to past history?


These damn shoes would be the death of her.  She could read the headlines now:  Penniless P.A. Falls to her Death while on Job Interview.

Almost to her destination, with no more mishaps, her confidence surfaced.  Okay, maybe mastering this heel thing wouldn’t be such a big deal.  Her steps became light, almost bouncy.  Although she sensed Keller Donovan behind her, she didn’t let it deter her feeling of success.  She stepped onto the large black and red area rug, less than ten feet from her target.  The leather chairs.

“Oh!”  Farah’s spiky heel caught on the edge of the expensive rug.  Her legs shook and she shot her arms out from her sides, circling them like a bird about to take flight.  She fought to regain balance inside the ridiculous stilts strapped to her feet.  A brawl to the death.  Over when she looked down to see the rug coming up to kiss her face.  She threw out her hands, sucked in a breath and closed her eyes, scrunching her face as she prepared for impact.

But nothing happened.  There were stars all right, and a blazing jolt of electricity shot from her toes, up her legs, through her body and exited with the small gasp which escaped her lips.  Somehow Keller Donovan had grabbed her around the waist before she met the floor.

Heat burned her cheeks.  He may have saved her body from bruises, but her ego, and whatever confidence she’d walked in with had shattered.

“Let’s not have an accident before your health benefits kick in.”  His breath

tickled her ear from behind.  Chills hugged her backbone.

His touch released an unsettling flutter in her abdomen.  She sucked in her stomach from the pressure of his strong arms wrapped around her middle, afraid to breathe.

Okay, after reading the blurb and excerpt and also learning the other titles I had chosen, do you feel I picked the right one? (you won’t hurt my feelings…so be honest 😉 Do you like another better? Or can you think of a totally different one?

I can’t wait to hear your answers and thanks for visiting with me today!

Two-Timing the Boss and my other book Some Like it in Handcuffs are both available in print and digital format at:

Author Bio:

Christine Warner is living her dream in rural Michigan along with her husband, three children, one laptop and a much loved assortment of furry friends.

Besides laughing and a good round of humor, she enjoys spending time with her family, cooking, reading, writing but no arithmetic.  A confessed people watcher, she finds inspiration for her stories in everyday activities.  She loves to read and write about strong heroes and determined, sometimes sassy, heroines.

A girl gone wild, at least where social media is concerned, she enjoys meeting other avid readers and writers on Facebook, Twitter and her website at

And you can find me at:

My blog/website:

Twitter under ChristinesWords:!/ChristinesWords

My Facebook page…stop by and give it a LIKE to stay informed of what I have in the works:


I love to hear from readers and other authors J

40 thoughts on “Choosing Titles by Author Christine Warner”

  1. I think you chose the best title, Christine. I have to have a title to start a book. If I don’t have one, I can’t seem to get going. I have changed a few along the way, though.

  2. I love your title, Christine! I can come up with a million different titles…but until one sticks, I’m like you, the book just doesn’t feel ‘right’. My current WIP had a title when I was creating the characters and then I realized about the 1/2 way point it didn’t work, so another title…then I started revisions and..didn’t fit. I’ll find the right one, someday. 🙂

    1. Kristi I have a story out on submission right now that I think I’ve changed the title 4 or 5 times already. For some reason i just can’t seem to find the one I want to etch in stone. LOL

  3. I love the title, Christine!! It fits perfectly, although the first one fit too 🙂 I’m OCD with my files on my computer and have to have a title before I can start typing my ms so I agonize over the perfect title before I get started, lol! I only have two books published and both have kept their original titles, but I doubt that will stay the same since I’m no good with titles generally 🙂
    Great post!! Congrats on the release!!

    1. Thanks Jennifer!

      I think your titles are great. I know it’s very jarring to have written a story and thought of it throughout the process with a certain title and then have to change it. Sometimes I still refer to Two Timing the Boss as Fakin’ it with…

  4. Thanks for sharing your other title choices. Those were interesting, but I like the current one best! Funny how a little research on Amazon will narrow the field down.

  5. Christine, like you, I like to come up with titles when I’m first formulating a story, but I wasn’t that way in the beginning. I’d write the story, then agonize over what to call it. But I find coming up with the title in advance helps me as I’m writing the story. I even come up with blurbs for my WIP’s. The original titles don’t always stick till the end, but most do. For my newest WIP, I chose the title, ‘The Physician’s Irish Lady’. I’ve just completed the first draft.

  6. I think you made the right choice in Two Timing The Boss! I love the title. I do have to say I’m one of those writers that doesn’t need a title to write the book. I can write and revise a couple of times and not have a title and if I have one it’s always subject to change. Same with character names and place names. I suck at coming up with clever names and if I waited for it to happen I’d be waiting forever 😀

    1. Okay, I might be able to write a book without a title (though I’d have a hard time) but there is no way I could not have character names..or change them once i start. Those are for sure set in cement.

      Lucky you for being able to do that. I’m jealous!

  7. Your title is just right. Normally, I have a title but with the last book in the Switched series I still haven’t come up with one. So I’m calling it Switched 3 until I do. So original. LOL

    1. I’m going to be thinking of Switched titles for you Diane! lmbo

      See, it’s a little game for me! hahahaha

      Glad you liked the title Two Timing the Boss and thanks for stopping in.

  8. I think you made the right choice with Two Timing the Boss. I’ve been hearing that title for so long that it’s difficult for me to think of it as anything else.

    When I first started writing I felt like I had to know the title before I could start a story, but now I’m okay with just a working title to give me direction. Knowing that a publisher might force me to change it makes me reluctant to get too attached to a title.

  9. I’ve only once had a title early on and have had to got through the nit picking process per- publication. I like The Two Faces of Farah …but Two Timing the Boss ‘nails’ the man in question a lot better. Good choice!

    1. It was a hard decision, but I think the main reason I went with Two Timing the Boss was that it did nail who the hero was..kind of got all characters in on that title! lol Thanks for coming by.

  10. Great post! There has only been one book in which I struggled trying to find a title and that book was never published. LOL. Other than that I’ve always started a ms with a title but sometimes the title changes in the course of the writing. Not always, but sometimes.

    ps – Love this blog design!!

    1. The book I have out for submission has had so many titles I’m losing count! lol And the book coming out with Entangled had to have a title change too…so I’m thinking I must have a title deficiency gene! lol

      Thanks so much for coming by.

  11. A title is VERY important to a story. There have been many books I’ve desired to read after hearing the title. One book I bought based on the title was Bound By the Mist by Lisa Kumar–awesome book. Her title called to me as soon as I heard it.

  12. “What’s in a name? That which we call a rose
    By any other name would smell as sweet.”
    Romeo and Juliet (II, ii, 1-2)

    Whether Two Timing the Boss or Faking it with Farah, it’s still a good story.

  13. I love the title. I think it convey’s the same message as the original one, but sounds catchier.

    I have trouble with titles. Sometimes I have a working title, but I rarely keep them. Luckily I can happily write without a title.

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