by Sandra Carter
(Talbott, Tennessee, United States)

Hello, I'm writing a novel about a woman's life. I was wondering how to title my chapters.

Example: Chapter 1 Birth to Age 5
or Chapter 1 1960 to 1965

I want to write the chapters in 5 year spans, but don't know which would look better.
Thank for your time.

Answer: To be honest, I would reconsider whether this is the best way to organize your chapters.

To be a book worth reading, yours needs to cover the important events, the major turning points, in your character's life, and leave out the rest.

Most people's life does not conveniently include a major event within every five year period. By insisting on that framework, you may find yourself having a few chapters in which nothing interesting happens, or a chapter in which too many important things happen, so you can't cover each one properly.

I would suggest you first identify the major events in your character's life. Make sure the book has a solid dramatic structure. Then assign a chapter to each event.

If you want to use chapter titles, make the titles related to the events.

Best of luck.

Click here to post comments

Join in and submit your own question/topic! It's easy to do. How? Simply click here to return to Character Invite.