I find it extremely difficult to complete a manuscript, without a title (or a ‘working’ one at least) decided.
It really starts to bother me after a few chapters.
I feel like I’m writing blind, as the title (for me) links into the theme for the whole novel. In my previous post, I did a bit of dabbling and mocked-up a cover for The Hag Stone, but after some reflection it just didn’t feel right.
It was too traditional epic fantasy – not taking into account the fact that romance plays a major part in the plot. I looked into the kind of covers that readers of fantasy romance expect – and there appears to always be a female on the cover.
Creative Indie Bookcovers did a blog post that explained this well: “Unlike non-fiction, which prizes creative ideas, fantasy book covers want dark, sumptuous, beautiful girls with long hair and flowing dresses, probably being overwhelmed by nature/dark forces.”
The name, The Hag Stone, wasn’t working for me either. It was too literal… I wanted something that encapsulated what the story is actually about.
So, back to the drawing board…
After much research and deliberation, my current novel has a name! The cover below is just a placeholder (once again created using Canva) . The final version will be quite different, as (since it’s Epic Fantasy Romance), there will be a young woman on the cover. Something like one of the covers on this page.
So here’s the title – followed by the premise and pitch for the novel.
Ruled by Shadows
In a land ruled by shadows, the fate of all lies in the hands of a girl who is afraid of the dark.
When Lilia promises to look after a charm for a mysterious traveller, she has no idea the trouble it will bring to her door. What appears to be a humble Hag Stone, used by folk to ward off evil spirits, is in reality a powerful talisman – one that a secret brotherhood has spent a thousand years searching for.
Anxious and reclusive, Lilia is not equipped to deal with the danger she now faces.
On the run with assassins at her heels, she finds herself in unlikely company. Her friend Perrin and Robana, a healer with a mysterious past, join her on a journey to seek the truth about the Hag Stone and the dark lord it once banished.
The shadows are deepening and an ancient evil risks being unleashed upon the world. Lilia must face the darkness, and her own fears – or there will be no going home.
Whew… now that’s done, I can get back to writing! 🙂