These Are The Most Common Short Story Titles Among One Magazine's Submissions, So You Better Check Before You Submit

Certain tropes exist with regards to just about every aspect of storytelling, and titles are no exception. And now, the editor of the major science fiction magazine Clarekesworld has released a list of the most common titles for short stories submitted to the magazine. So if you're planning to submit a story with one of these titles, maybe try to pick something that will stand out just a bit more.

Clarkesworld, of course, is a sci-fi/fantasy magazine, so the commonality of these titles may not apply to other genres. But still, each genre undoubtedly has their own tropes. In romance, for instance, there are books with straightforward titles like The Spinster and the Earl, suggestive titles like Out of Breath, and titles with a play on words like The Royal We. Mysteries and thrillers, on the other hand, favor intriguing, slightly sinister titles like Graveyard of Memories or The Escape.

Meanwhile, when it comes to literary fiction, short stories usually favor abstract concepts like "Regret" or "Lost Hearts," stand alone nouns like "The Huntsman" or "The Cactus" or titles that hint at grand symbolism, like "The Open Window" and "To Build a Fire." Literary fiction is pretentious like that. But we do love it so.

So what are the current favorite titles among sci-fi and fantasy short story writers? Well, based on the 50,000 or so submissions Clarkesworld has received, these are the 10 most popular:

10. "The Hunt"


9. "Sacrifice"

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8. "Lost and Found"

7. "Monsters"

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6. "The Box"

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5. "Homecoming"

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4. "Hunger"

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3. "Home"

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2. "The Gift"


1. "Dust"

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Images: morningbirdphoto/pixabay; Getty (9); Kristina Alexanderson/flickr