Insert catchy headline here

No, the headline is not a sub editing snafu – rather one of the random ramblings I’ve been thinking about.



There is no doubting the importance of a catchy headline, particularly in this electronic age when an entire story can be conveyed in just 144 characters. In fact one of the most often clicked-on posts in this blog is most likely found through a Google search by Metallica fans, the post title is Ride the Lightning aka Unintended Meanings . The post content is more about how once art is in the world you have lost the ability to control how it is interpreted, however I get so many hits from what I assume are Metallica fans googling the record title.

The other day I was reading the newspaper online and one of the articles I could have clicked on in the lifestyle-type section was headlined ’10 unusual things to do with breast milk’ – sorry peeps, I’m not providing a clickable link for that one! Apart from feeding an infant I would have thought any other use would be considered unusual. However, the point is, the headline was certainly not enticing me to click through!

A second slightly related rambling – As I was sitting in the library waiting for the annoying windows updates on my netbook to happen I glanced around at my fellow bibliophiles, as you do. There was a sweet older gentleman, probably a retiree, sitting in a sunny corner, absorbed in a book. I envied him the luxury of having an afternoon with nothing more pressing to do than sit and enjoy a read in a comfy chair. He suddenly exclaimed under his breath ‘sh1t!’ and flicked forwards pages in his book, flicked back again, read some more. And immediately I thought – how fantastic to be able to elicit such a response from a reader. I tried to spy the book he was reading when he stood up suddenly and headed back into the shelves. I was able to glimpse the title as he disappeared, re-emerging from the shelves empty-handed and then he left the library. I’m not quite sure what he was expecting when he picked up Benjamin Law’s book Gaysia: Adventures in the Queer East – but I would have thought that title was a fair indication of what you were letting yourself in for!

And a third, somewhat sad side note – Tom Clancy died last week, I still enjoy watching and reading Clear and Present Danger and The Hunt for Red October. He still has a book to come out, Command Authority is due for release on 3 December.

4 responses to “Insert catchy headline here

  1. I’m always amused by the online headlines which are obviously click-bait. “Ten Great Writers Who Were Really Total Dicks” (I didn’t make that one up — and boy was it shoddy). “Tea: nobody knows how to make it right.” (I’m making up the exact title, but that was a real article and by Christopher Hitchens at that.) Most headlines in the last few months which involved Miley Cyrus.

    I did sort of luck out with my first novel, which was called A Sane Woman — and many people have said that they found it a very intriguing title. That was the one time I’ve ever achieved that. 🙂


    • I do like A Sane Woman – however I am sure you mean it as a statement of the obvious rather than an oxymoron 🙂
      I personally struggle with titles and in my journalism days with headlines and photo captions – I would make a terrible copy writer


  2. Again great Writing


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