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Astinus July 15th, 2013 3:09 PM

Tell me about your fanfiction titles here!

Coming up with a title is a pain for me, and some of my fics tend to go through various titles before I settle on one. Where do you get your inspiration for titles? How do you choose them? Do they have any meaning for the story?

I'll talk about mine at a later time.

bobandbill July 15th, 2013 11:06 PM

I am probably not the best writer of fic titles. XD Oh well. I just try to think of something that'll suit the story in its tone or describing it. I don't look about for inspiration, and sometimes only go with the title after finishing the story itself...

The Retelling of Pokémon Colosseum - a pretty darn straightforward title, but I suppose it works in that it tells one what the story is about, haha. Granted this was my first fic so I hadn't given too much thought about titles all the way back then.

Unfortunately Blue - I went with a title that reflected a theme/event in the story. I think it was commented upon as being a good title for it, so I suppose it worked!

Keep Out - that title was just used as it worked both as a theme and as a title of a message/letter that the story was about.

Turnabout Assumptions - not my idea! :V It did fit both a theme of the story and the fact it was an Ace Attorney fic (Turnabout _____ is common theme of episode titles in the games).

Snapshots - again, just a simple title that reflected a theme of the story, in which different points of a Pokémon's life was shown (ergo, snapshots).

That's fics that I've posted at any rate. =p

Lowstah July 16th, 2013 12:55 AM

Only have two at the moment
A tale of loyalty - a working title that through laziness and a lack of ingenuity turned into the title - the story talks a lot about friendship, love and opinion

The Lightning American - Surge's bad-ass nickname gave me a great idea for a short story

I often find titling the hardest part of any fan fiction, its difficult to find a word or phrase that can encompass the points of the plot, whilst remaining attractive to a prospective reader.

Cutlerine July 16th, 2013 12:58 AM

Titles bug me in the worst possible way. It annoys me so much not to have one that I can't start writing without one, and then if I can't come up with one right away then I have to come up with a working title, and then spend days agonising over the finished story, trying to think of a better title.

Thankfully, I haven't usually had this problem with fanfiction: the titles have all presented themselves to me almost immediately.

The Thinking Man's Guide to Destroying the World I made up in about three seconds without giving much thought to the story itself - before, in fact, I'd even decided that the world would be destroyed in it. In fact, the story almost came about as a reaction to the title.

A Study in Saffron (posted here as The Rocket Case, a far inferior title) is a pastiche of A Study in Scarlet, at least so far as the title goes. The two stories bear no resemblance to each other except that they feature private investigators.

My Trip to the End of Time, by Pearl Gideon refers less now to the story than when I started; only after finishing did I realise that Pearl Gideon never actually got to the end of time. I'm not sure where it came from.

Coriolanus Rowland's Guide to Pokémon Husbandry is, er, fairly obvious, I think, as are Snow and The Beastman: their subject is outlined concisely in the title.

Crack'd, or How the Love of Seafood Saved Unova is derived grom Tennyson's 'The Lady of Shalott' ('Out flew the web and floated wide:-/The mirror crack'd from side to side'), which I thought fitted a world that resembled ours but was cracked in half down the centre of reality.

A Smell of Petroleum Pervades Throughout was a mistake. It derives from 'a smell of petroleum prevails throughout', the so-called secret of the universe, but when I typed it into the subject bar of my new thread, I found out I'd misquoted it. That meant that I had to work out a way of incorporating the misquote into the story, which in the end resulted in it being a clue towards the importance of letters (i.e. Unown) in the story.

So yeah. My titles are a mixture of haphazard quotations, attempts to catch a theme in a couple of words and 'things what sounded good'.


dudebot July 16th, 2013 10:26 AM

Hollow Sunset - Used to pretty much describe the underline basis of the story. In the end, when you get to watch as the sun sets, you realize how empty it truly is. Metaphorically, of course, the meaning is very similar.

Forgetting Morality - The essential summary of the already-small prompt. Sometimes, when you're constantly winning, you let the concept of morality slip from your mind. Something like George Reeves beginning to believe he was Superman before he jumped off that building. But when you forget your morality, it always reminds you.

Astinus July 16th, 2013 11:23 AM

Titles used to be difficult to come up with for me until I switched my writing order and just gave my fics working titles, wrote the fics, and came up with something better.

Instability - the world and the main characters' relationships are unbalanced in this fic.

Lucidity - this is the first fic that I thought of from outside inspiration before the story was even written. It comes from the song "Silent Lucidity" which I heard once, fell in love with, and wanted to reference in some way.

Purity - the world's kind of put back into some order.

I have a series of four "books" at twelve chapters long to encompass a retelling of the second season of Digimon. Collectively, they're under the title "Long Twilight Struggle", which comes from John F. Kennedy's inauguration speech. I heard it once in history class, felt that flash of inspiration, and wrote it down to use for something. Many years later, I looked up the entire speech.

Heirs of the First Revolution - The second Chosen Children are introduced and given some guidance from the first set of Chosen. The second revolution is the attempt to defeat the new enemy.

New Alliance for Progress - The Chosen have to decide whether to welcome one former enemy on the team while another enemy falls even deeper into darkness.

The Loyalty of Faithful Friendship - New friends prove themselves to the team, and the Chosen Children get a little bit stronger.

Planned or Accidental Self-Destruction - Plans go completely wrong as one Chosen wants to save the world and the team has to save them.

After these, there's a planned sequel titled Light of Posterity which comes from Bill Clinton's inauguration speech.

I'm almost embarrassed to show my working titles but...: "Illumination", "The Elements", "Lucky End", and the worst of them all "Written in the Stars". Though I still like "The Universe Gave Me You", which is a phrase the character thinks in the story and pretty much describes what happens.

icomeanon6 July 16th, 2013 3:41 PM

With me I usually have a vague idea for a story or something I want to write about, and that usually comes with a title. I know it's backwards, but I don't think it's a problem as long as you proceed to forget about the title and acknowledge that it might change after the fact. :P

I think these two are the only titles I decided on after I really knew what the story was about:

A Matter of Stubbornness - This was for a Small Writing Competition, so less brainstorming and more writing.

(This title redacted until after judging for this year's SWC is finished)

These two are my favorite titles because I picked them before I had any idea of a story and proceeded to think of a story to go with them:

Gary Stu's Unpredictable Adventure - Simple idea: skewer Pokemon fanfiction cliches.

Giovanni Destroys the World and Everything in It - Just liked the way it sounds!


Originally Posted by Astinus
I have a series of four "books" at twelve chapters long to encompass a retelling of the second season of Digimon.

I want to read this. :P For those who don't know, Asty and I are in an unofficial contest to see who can keep the other waiting for their Digimon stories longest. No victor is in sight, but if I end up winning I may be disqualified for writing too few total words--unfair advantage.

My Digimon title is Digimon Campaign, and it's the one I'm most likely to change. Since my first round of brainstorming the themes have changed a good deal. Originally it didn't have any major ideas other than kids go to the Digital World and get involved in a race war an "attribute" war.

Khawill July 16th, 2013 8:16 PM

My titles are usually straight forward and simple. Granted I usually don't give a title at all,only having given like 4 titles to non-essay writing

Pikachu July 24th, 2013 3:52 AM

Since it's been quite a while since I wrote fanfiction, I can't provide any title examples for that here. But forum roleplays are similar in a way, in that the story is often planned beforehand so that a fitting title can be given. Some titles I've had are:

Origins - for a RP around Kanto where Bill searches for clues on Kanto's lacking mythology.

Rockets Rising - in which players were gym leaders, some of which were leaders of Team Rocket.

Foreigners - in which players were trainers from other regions who came to Kanto to show off, more or less.

Arcanum - just the name of a journey roleplay in a region called Arcanum.

Kanto Rewinded - in which trainers film their adventures on tape.

Begin, Again - inspired by the name of a PC skin and featuring a plot very akin to the games.

Checkmate - in which players play a simplified version of a game from Homestuck, called CHESS.

So it seems like I prefer the short and sweet titles, often just one word. Fairly simple too, often directly relating to the name of something in the RP, or being a hint of what is to come later on in the plot. I invent a plot first and come up with the name lastly.

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