Tuesday, 23 February 2016

Horror Title Survey Results

Photo credit: The Sea via photopin (license)

Most of the results are in from my survey to gain insights into what I should name my new horror collection. I used a simple scoring system. Any option with a tick in "Good" got 3pts. Ok = 1 pt. Rubbish = -3 points. An option with no tick = no change to the score. The results match my own preferences fairly closely, so that is reassuring! I'll list the options in final score order.

Q1. Name the collection after one of the stories
11 Things Move Below
9 The Scissor Man

6 If That Looking Glass Gets Broken
5 Regression
3 Transmission
2 Bleeding Sunset, Dancing Snowflakes
0 Breaking The Ice
-1 How It Got There
-1 Just Telling Stories
-2 Overload
-3 Web
-5 Claws Truth Forebear
-5 Creeping Jesus
-5 Living In The Present
-5 Sinker
-7 Harvest Festival

Comments
“My only thing about 'title of one as title for whole book' is that sometimes I''ve not realised it's a book of short stories and got home from the library and been a bit disappointed it's not a novel. So, you may want to include 'and other stories' in the subtitle. The other thing I know I said the 'only thing' before, is that a title with a very specific meaning e.g. regression may make some people think it's all about that sort of topic.”

Q2. Should there be an "And Other Stories" subtitle?
Yes = 4 votes.
No = 1 vote.

Q3. Names that aren't one of the stories
14 Long Shadows
11 Dark Harvest

6 Dark Signals
2 Broken Harvest
1 Darkness Below
-2 Broken Scissors
-2 Broken Signal
-6 Death Harvest
-6 Scissor Harvest
-14 Scissor Claws

Conclusions 
People hated Scissor Claws (-14). Me too, it was one of the options put in to pad things out, never a real contender. Sorry Scissor Claws!

The most popular were:
  • 14 Long Shadows
  • 11 Dark Harvest
  • 11 Things Move Below
  • 9 The Scissor Man
Long Shadows is actually my codename for my folder of notes and ideas for horror stories; Dark Harvest was my codename for this collection. However, I like the idea of naming a collection after one of the stories, so the highest ranking was: Things Move Below! That works on a few levels, since it could refer to creatures below the surface of the water (two stories) or things in the subconscious (a few of them).  I made a slight change and renamed the eponymous story "They Move Below" which seems slightly creepier, so the new collection will be called:

They Move Below
And Other Stories

Thanks to everyone who voted!

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1 comments:

Alyson said...

One step closer to publication!