Okay, ladykats (and gentlemankats). I need your help.
We’re trying to name my new book series. And it’s HARD.

Naming a book is like coming up with a new name for your best friend. You know your friend so well – how can you possibly pick a name that sums up everything they mean to you, so new people meeting them will think ‘ooo, great name, I bet she’s cool/funny/nice/interesting’, too?

So naming a book SERIES is twice as hard. Make that twenty. Because you can’t just describe one character, or one plot, or one theme. You need to come up with a sort of umbrella title. Like Sweet Valley High, or The Babysitter’s Club, or The Famous Five, or whatever. It has to be big, it has to encompass everything, it has to be memorable and have a little bit of magic.

Then, after you’ve named the series, you need to name the individual book titles. Which is, of course, easier – as you can use that particular book’s plot as a jumping off point. So I’m not too worried about them.

Okay, shall I tell you a little about it?

The basics: It’s a series about five best friends sharing a house as they navigate their early 20s. They’re starting adult life, figuring out what they want to do and how they’re going to do it, having relationship meltdowns, throwing parties, getting drunk, making mistakes, you know. All the good stuff. (And yah, I know about the damn HBO series GIRLS. I first pitched this series idea two years ago*, goddamnit, way before that idea was a twinkle in Lena Dunham’s eye. And mine is way funnier. Way. Funnier.)

The personality: It’s an action-packed wild ride of new adulthood, starring girls you’d want to have a drink with, dudes you want to slap or salivate over, and the kind of storylines that make you gasp and weep and bark with laughter and above all, turn the page. (Is that overselling it? Screw it, let’s run with it.)

Each book in the series is narrated by a different character. So she’ll have her own exciting story to tell.

We’ve been calling it UNION STREET up till now because, well, we just did. But it’s not very exciting. And then for a while I wanted to call it ROOKIES, but I am the only person who is dancing to that particular tune, which is never a good sign. I’m also toying with my original title for it, which was TWENTYSOMETHINGS, what do you think of that? And THE BEST OF ANYTHING, which is a play on THE BEST OF EVERYTHING, which I have loved forever. I fear none of them have that zingthwack! that happens when you hear the right title. Like A GIRL LIKE YOU. That title had an immediate zingthwack! (THE DATING DETOX, not so much. But that’s another story.)

Any ideas, dearest readers?

*It takes a long time to launch a book series. A VERY LONG TIME. Planning and writing it is just the half of it. So, thank you for your patience, my loves, I have been working my ass off, and soon I will have SO MANY books for you to read that you’ll be sick to death of me. In a good way.

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23 thoughts on “On… [INSERT TITLE HERE]

  1. Paolo Gardinali

    The wackiest unused series names I can think of right now:
    The G Spot
    Tenement Zen
    I'd love something like "Accarezzando" but no one else could spell it
    Shoes (ok, just kidding)
    The A List
    Gems (inspired by the author of course)
    But of course is that the perfect series title is hidden in the pages of the book as an in-joke that the author and the reader share, and that will go a long way to ensure that the buying the next book will be a given :)

  2. Dizzy C

    The best of anything sounds good.

    If not, maybe a play on the fact that there are 5 of them and their futures. FIVE FALL INTO THE FUTURE, or something snappier and shorter :)

    All best wishes for the new series


  3. Aspire

    AAAh I can't wait until your series is out…Im in serious GB withdrawl.
    I have no helpful suggestions to name the series as my mind is blank…all I want is the first book!!! Some simple suggestions:
    Divas/Glam Girls/City Chaos/Free and Fabulous/ Working the World

    And yes…this is why you are the write and I am the reader :p

    When will the first one be published???

  4. Anonymous

    Hiya Gemma

    Well I liked Union Street – I thought that sounded sharp and modern and it stuck in my mind. Anyway… What about Union Avenue (Avenue more SATC sounding?)

    TWENTYSOMETHINGS – this is too much like THIRTYSOMETHING sitcom name from the 90's. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Thirtysomething_%28TV_series%29

    So, Ummmmmmmmmmm what about:

    This House
    Together Alone
    Pink Tapestry
    Union Ladies

    I'll keep thinking :)
    Liz x

  5. James Hope

    As my two cents- I always wanted to write quarter life crisis novel called “Life take two.” That would bounce quite nicely of the Broadway aspect of New York as well. Maybe not very chicklit though. It seems to me that most series just sit back on the title (or part of the title) of the first book. Back to the Future, The Dark Tower, Twilight, Harry Potter. Giving the first book an overarching series title very different from its main title right out of the gates might seem a bit odd. Or worse- a bit self satisfied. So maybe go for something that can cover both. Something like: “The Redbrick Diaries.” It doesn’t have to jump out of the page, though. Like with band names- the body of work behind it makes the name work.

  6. Anonymous

    "Union Street" is a more than decent title! It suggest NY as location, exciting, bright lights of the big city, glitz and glamour, dreams and hopes, highs and lows but also the shades and shadows in between …
    Also the union/bond/relationship between the girls/young women living in the Brooklyn brownstone.
    It really seems like a good place to start.
    Perhaps UNION STREET – "Gemma's" Diary/Story, for the first book, more like and introduction into their world and for the rest of the books, more of an individual title depending on what is the main "highlight" in each book.

  7. Nicola Doherty

    I really liked Union Street! It said New York to me plus, you know, they're a union … together …
    That's not helpful though is it. I will have a think. If it's any consolation the title of my first book took literally months to come up with but we got it in the end …

  8. Nah Cho

    I actually adored the title Union Street. It sounds modern and transports the reader into the New York atmosphere, with it's bright lights and towering buildings, air full of promise and (sometimes naive) hope.

    The one above (Brownstone Diaries) is pretty good, too.

  9. Rhysa

    I can't wait for this series to come out. A Girl Like You is one of my favourite books! I can't wait for your next books. Paolo Gardinali made a comment about how the title is like a secret gem between writer and reader hidden within the pages of the novel and I kind of agree with him. A Girl like you was never mentioned in the book until the very last chapter and Abigail is such a likable and relatable character that any girl could see herself in her shoes; she was a girl like you. With a series, the title has to tye-in all five girls. You as the author have a more intimate relationship with the characters. I can throw out a few names but whatever you name it if your name is in the by-line, and this book is like A Girl Like You, I'm buying it.
    The best of anything, I like
    If you like to play on movie titles what about All About Chums, Pal
    Who's on first, She's on last

  10. bondgirl

    When you first talked about this series I remember someone used the phrase NEW ADULT, that was good.

  11. Anonymous

    The adult games The cocktail loving girls , THe adventures at union street union street dreams , CIry dreamers Newyork girls

  12. Caitlin Wood

    How about the Union Bank (a cute name for their house), people always coming and going, making transactions and deposits…

    Or The Burg

    Greenwich Mean Time – Greenwich VIllage

  13. Kulsuma

    Hi, I recently enjoyed reading both of your books. I can't wait to read more from you. I'm excited that it's going to be a series. I don't particularly like the name 'Union Street'. It doesn't give anything away. I realise naming is tough. Can't wait to read it regardless of what it's called!

    I'll throw some names out for fun:

    Playing The Game
    Work Hard, Play Harder
    The Urbane Sequence
    Urban Jungle
    The Chic Circle
    The Wild Cycle
    Cosmopolitan Girls
    Only Young Once
    Modern Girls
    Girls to Women
    Breaking The Rules
    Conversations on Love
    Life, Love and Lust
    Love Lessons/ Lessons in Love
    Girls in the City
    Girls on Top
    Friendship and Fire

    I like Girls on Top and The Chic Circle the most:D

  14. Anonymous

    Hi Gemma, sooo looking forward to your new series, my poor TDD & AGLY, have been read & re-read so many times they're falling apart! The naming of the New series, can you make up a title frm the first initial of each main character? I must admit Union street doesn't attract me, sounds to official, not upbeat, doesn't inspire me to take it off the shelf. Unlike your other books were the title was a statement of intrigue (is that spelt right??). Finding a title is as hard as naming your child (which they are of course), I dont envy you, wish I could be more helpful!! I shall buy the books anyway because you wrote them. One last go 'madness & mayhem' …. It's just a thought lol. Goodluck, we're all waiting impatiently :-)

  15. Clare

    Hi Gemma,

    I realise I'm a little late to the party ( I was reading your 50 shades of grey post, hilarious btw, and carried on until I came across this) but thought I would try and be helpful as it must be hard trying to come up with a title! Almost as hard as naming your child, but hey you did that right? So I'm sure you'll get there :) here's my two pence…
    I like Union Street and think it will make more sense to people once they read the stories and it becomes the central point for the characters and story but if this is not to be, maybe a play on the address, so if it's union st- 22 Union St, Jane's story or:
    The Union Years
    The Roaring Twenties
    The Girls / Girls Like Us
    Key to the door
    Twenty somethings- I like this too :)

    Anyway they're my thoughts, if they make the list of what you definitely DON'T want to call it then I guess that's been helpful :) if they make the other list or inspire something else cool beans!

    Good luck and I can't wait to read 'insert title here' :)

    Clare xx


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