So, you’ve decided to start a magazine. Whether it’s online or a paper copy, your magazine will be uniquely you and you probably already have tons of ideas for the content you want to publish. All you need is a name.
Naming your magazine is more important than you might initially be thinking. It’s how people will spread the word about it and how you will start to build a brand. Finding the right name can be a challenge. If you’re finding it difficult coming up with the perfect name for your publication, try some of these tricks for finding a name.
Get creative with punctuation, rhyme, and relations
If you know a word or phrase you want to use for a name but you want it to stand out more, consider finding ways to creatively incorporate punctuation. This can be anything from a single dash to a strategically placed comma or an emphatic exclamation mark. You might also consider finding a way to add a rhyme in your name. People will likely remember a rhyme better than a plain single world. Another way to add some excitement to your name is to find another word related to the one you already like.
There’s a reason we all remember puns and why we notice them when they are used. They stick in your mind and the same will happen in the mind of your reader. Consider what the main subject or theme of your magazine is and come up with a few fun puns that play on that theme. While you may not use a pun, this exercise can reveal the golden word or phrase for your magazine.
Let’s get grammatical
Playing with different aspects of grammar can be a great way to develop a unique, catchy name for your magazine. Things like allusion, hyperbole, onomatopoeia, personification, and metaphors all add character to the title you are giving to the magazine. Try picking out words that go along with the theme of your ‘zine and then write out a couple of variations using different grammatical tools.
Return to the Roots
Do you know the root of the word or phrase you’re leaning toward for the name of your magazine? Look it up! Some of the Latin roots can offer a cool, funky take on an otherwise forgettable name. Look up some of the roots of different words that fit with your magazine theme. Play around with adding those in as an homage to the original language.
Be intentionally wrong
If you’ve never heard of malapropisms, it’s time to learn how to use them! Simply put, malapropism is using a word that sounds similar but is actually incorrect. For example, “Chip Off the Old Rock,” where you use “rock” in place of “block.” This is a great way to tie in a commonly known phrase but adjust it to fit the theme of your magazine.
Make them laugh
Using humor is an extremely effective way to keep your magazine in the minds of readers. Whether you use wordplay, a joke, or a quip, if you can get them laughing, they will remember you. However, it’s important to be tasteful with your humor.
If the name of your magazine is offensive, too flip, or pokes fun at the wrong thing, you may get attention for the wrong reasons. Be aware of the different demographics that could see your magazine and stay cognizant of sensitivities. Staying a little safe with your humor will always be better than pushing a boundary to the point of breaking.
Whichever technique you use to decide on the name for your magazine, remember that standing out is great, but you should also have a purpose in your name. It should give the reader an idea of the content you plan on publishing. And don’t worry! If you change your mind, you can change the name. Now, get to writing!