writing “Read me, Seymour!” titles

Imagine this: you’ve reached the end of your time on the Earth.  You’re standing before St. Peter (folks who aren’t on board with the whole Pearly Gates scenario, just roll with me for a minute) and this is what you hear: “Tell me why you deserve to stay in heaven.  You have thirty seconds.  Go.”

You’re faced with arguably the most important pitch of your existence, and the seconds are ticking away.  No pressure, right?

This is what writing titles for the blog feels like.  I have some very loyal friends and family who would probably read my post even if I titled it “the importance of good dental hygiene,” but those folks are gluttons for punishment (aka bound by love).  The rest of the online world has a choice.  To click or not to click, that is the question.

And I have to say that a post on dental hygiene isn’t likely to make me click.

Which takes us back to Riddle from the Middle and the crushing intensity of producing interesting post titles.  I’d like to think I’ve gotten better at this over time.  Here are examples of what I’d consider some of my less stellar titles:

writer’s block (ack!)
kitchen vexations
yay…dentist time!
these kids today…
sweet memories
ouch

All of them are directly related to their posts’ topic, but none really scream “Read me, Seymour!” and that clickability factor is critical to a blogger.  Here are a few times when I did better:

Under Armour and a thong (otherwise known as just another Monday morning)
The Santa Talk (at Easter)
when tomboys raise girly girls
teaching is like...(no, not a box of chocolates)
Defend the Homestead!
I'll take "Songs Most Likely to Cause Raucous Car Singing" for 400, Alec.
from Sunday drive to sex shop in 60 seconds or less
caterpillars, butterflies, Jesus, and Aunt Flo
cars, gnats, and my Ghandi-in-training
A Guide to Having Your $#@! Together While Parenting a Tween

See?  Much more attention grabbing (and still relevant to their posts’ topic).

The problem is that damn blinking cursor.  It sits in the Title box, flashing impertinently while I tap my (metaphorical) eraser against my temple.  A title, a title…my kingdom for a title.

A title that catches a reader’s attention and makes them want to know more.  One that screams this girl’s got something to say.  One that grabs you by the hand and pulls you into the blog, then makes you linger long enough to see what I’ve got to say.

Now if only I can figure out how to title a blog post about titles.

6 thoughts on “writing “Read me, Seymour!” titles

  1. I hope you can add this blog title to your best titles list, because it worked on me! At first I wondered if the post would relate to the “Feed me Seymour” or Little Shop of Horrors, but by the time I got to the end I didn’t care that it went in a completely different direction. If you can succeed at sparking a memory (hopefully a good one) with readers it can definitely help get clicks.
    I think most of us find it difficult to be on point every single time we do things but at the same time I understand the need and drive to make it great and exciting each and every time, regardless of what we are creating – a fabulous blog title, sewing projects or a Bob Ross worthy painting. Photographers have to take dozens, if not hundreds of good and great shots to get one that is knock your socks off and breathtaking, so don’t be too hard on yourself about the blog titles.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you! I guess what I learned (after blogging a while) is that it isn’t just the quality of the post. I’d work hard to make those interesting, but I figured out it didn’t matter how good the writing was if people drawn to my post so the title couldn’t be a throwaway I smacked on at the last minute. It’s definitely forcing me to flex my brain muscles!

      On a side note, the invention of digital photography has been life changing. When I think about all the film I used to actually get processed….sheesh.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. I guess I never really thought about my titles….nor do I think about them when reading someone else’s blog. I just know that if someone likes how I write, they will probably read me no matter what my title is and I am the same. But to catch a new person’s eye….I can understand the importance of “Title Porn”…..something so intriguing that I. Must. Read. It.

    Liked by 1 person

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