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March 14, 2007

Naming: From Brand Names to Book Titles

As a brand name and product naming consultant I am not usually asked to create book titles, but I was interested to note that last Friday industry magazine The Bookseller in the UK released the short list for the 29th annual Bookseller-Diagram Prize for Oddest Book Titles Prize.

book2.jpgThe winner of the oddest book title will be announced on April 13, just before the London Book Fair. Contenders come from around the world, it seems, and included:

  • The Stray Shopping Carts of Eastern North America: A Guide to Field Identification
  • Tattooed Mountain Woman and Spoon Boxes of Daghestan
  • Di Mascio's Delicious Ice Cream: Di Mascio of Coventry, an Ice Cream Company of Repute, with an Interesting and Varied Fleet of Ice Cream Vans
  • Better Never to Have Been: The Harm of Coming into Existence

The heavy favorite to win, however, is How Green Were the Nazis.

book1.jpgLast year's winner was Gary Leon Hill for The People Who Don't Know They're Dead: How They Attach Themselves to Unsuspecting Bystanders and What to Do About It. Previous contenders have included Bombproof Your Horse and Living with Crazy Buttocks. The most useful title ever, I feel, was 1992’s How to Avoid Huge Ships.

You can vote at The Register for the weirdest of them all.

Yesterday, the Law Librarian Blog was also inspired to run a contest for the oddest law book title. Nominees include:

  • Blackie the Talking Cat: And Other Favorite Judicial Opinions (West 1996)
  • The Law of Cadavers, Second Edition (Prentice-Hall, 1950)
  • No justice, no piece! : a working girl's guide to labor organizing in the sex industry / by the hell-raisin' hussies who organized the Exotic Dancers Union at San Francisco's Lusty Lady Theater

Before March 23rd, you can be a namer, too. Voting starts April 2nd.

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Posted by William Lozito at March 14, 2007 9:16 AM
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