Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Road Trip Wednesday

Today on the YA Highway we're talking comp titles.

What's a comp title?  Well, it's a book and or author that are similar to your manuscript either by style or subject matter.

Okay, so picking comp a title is kinda hard.  When I was looking for comps for EMERALD'S KEEPER, I dragged my sister to the bookstore and made her sit with me and go through stacks and stacks of YA books.  True story.  We were there for hours reading, and I left with the tallest tower of novels ever.  ;)

In the end, my sister and I decided my style of writing and imagery best compared to Aprilynne Pike's WINGS, and Holly Black's TITHE.  (Ha, even the covers are similar!)


Two, fairly different, yet still similar titles.

I foresee another trip to the bookstore to find comp titles for my WIP.  I've never read a story quite like this one before, so it should be a fun hunt.

What are  your comp titles?  How did you pick them?


Susan said...

I haven't read either of those books... I started Wings but was too cheap to buy the book. ::blushes:: I will have to amend that mistake, I suppose.

Hmmmm... My own comp would have to be Libba Bray's Gemma Doyle Trilogy. I love Libba Bray, and it wasn't until YOU suggested it, Holly, that I realized maybe my own book was similar.

I used that comp in my query letter, and agents have confirmed the similarity -- it's A Great and Terrible Beauty with zombies. ;)

Holly Dodson said...

Funny how that works, isn't it? YOU suggested I read Libba Bray, and I made the connection to your book.

It's like destiny!!!!!!!! Okay, maybe not, but it's pretty funny how things work sometimes.

KO said...

I haven't read either of these Holly-- but have heard of them.

Very cool!

Alicia Gregoire said...

I love how you had someone help find the initial stack of comps. Comps are so hard, it's nice to have the support. *slides eyes over to Hubby and grins evilly*

Abby Stevens said...

I enjoyed TITHE, but I haven't read WINGS yet. Does WINGS share the same grittiness as TITHE? An agent compared PRODIGAL MAGGIE to TITHE, but the tone and spirit are completely different!

Holly Dodson said...

Abby - No. WINGS is quite different, none of the grittiness of TITHE. I think I have more Aprilynne's style of prose, but more TITHE's story structure.

So, blending the two together gives a pretty good picture of the tone of EMERALD. In my mind anyway. lol

Sarah Nicolas said...

I struggle so much with comp titles, that it's awesome to see you look like you have yours figured out.

I just finished reading WINGS and am now reading SPELLS. TITHE is on my bookshelf, waiting.

Pam Harris said...

I haven't read either of these books, but I heard wonderful things about Holly Black. Looks like you're in great company. :)

Claire Dawn said...

Finished Wings last week. It was one of those youcantreallycallyourselfayawriter purchases.

I haven't thought about comp titles that seriously. And every time I do, really big names pop up in my head. (There is an article in a 6 prefecture Japanese newspaper which may or may not mention a book I wrote being like

Claire Dawn said...

Oh, and the thing about using really big names as comps: it comes across as a cliche, even if your book is the next Harry Potter.

Leila Austin said...

I've been meaning to read Holly Black's novels for ages! I read a short story she'd written for a collection a while ago and loved it.

I like the idea of going to a bookstore and reading a massive stack of books to find comps. I'm always looking for excuses to do that anyway :-)