Questions about title (and cover)
I am writing a book which straddles genres: primarily a non-fiction book, but set in a fictional setting (a bit in the tradition of Mark Haddon, Denis Guedj, Hans Enzensberger, Júlio César de Mello e Souza (alias Malba Tahan), Guillermo Martínez and Apostolos Doxiadis). The inserted explanations would make it a lousy novel, but there is enough fiction so that if you removed the pedantry, you would still end up with a novel. But one of my problems is that the book is introducing a topic that few people know about. Choosing a title becomes tricky, because the standard advice says to choose a title that (1) entices the reader to make her read the book, (2) will also appear in an Internet search for the topic, (3) gives a good idea what the book is about, and (4) is short. Since few people know the topic, they will not search for it, and to explain it in the title would make it too long. To put the area in which the idea is one element in the title would not only be too broad, and would not only not entice, but would frighten away most of the prospective readers: the topic is a popularization of a certain idea taken from mathematical logic (for the lay person, without formulas). Mathematics, eek!
Eventually this problem will arise when I consider the picture for the book cover: the designer probably won't read the book, and I will have to present her with an idea for the cover. (True, a lot of covers have very little to do with the content, but...) The advice about the cover tends to be similar to that for the title.
So, I would be very grateful for ideas that go beyond the standard advice presented above.