Brandon Witt on Choosing Book Titles and his release ‘Mapping the Forest’ (guest blog and giveaway)



Mapping the Forest by Brandon Witt
Dreamspinner Press

Cover Artist: Anne Cain



Sales Links




Scattered Thoughts and Rogue Words is happy to have Brandon Witt here today on his Mapping the Forest tour. Welcome, Brandon!


In the previous blog tour stop, I spoke about a ‘contest’ of good intentions that had very positive results. However, there was another ‘contest’ associated with Mapping the Forest where the results weren’t so grand.

I was struggling with naming this novel.  I had the titles of the following four books of the series already figured out, but, for some reason, the name of the first one simply wasn’t coming. 

So, I had a brilliant idea.  I held a book-naming contest on Facebook.  I listed a few titles and had people vote. 

I don’t remember the rest of the titles, but the winning one was Forsaking the Forest. 

One of my beta readers didn’t hold back after reading the book.  They hated the title.  Hated it. 

It is a little melodramatic if I’m being honest.  But I just really love the word forsake.  I don’t know what my problem is! 

And, the beta pointed out, no one in the book actually forsakes the forest.  They all really like the forest. 

In the contestants’ defense, all the titles I listed were atrocious. 

So, please consider this my apology if you were one of the readers who participated in the contest.  I’m sorry I gave you horrible names to pick from.  I’m sorry that I broke my word and didn’t keep the atrocious title you picked. I did for a while, saying that I couldn’t go back on the contest. More than one person said I was being an idiot.  Thank the lord for them!

It was my fault.  All my fault.  Not yours.  You’re lovely and beautiful and did nothing to deserve such a dark fate as picking between God-Awful titles. 

No one in this book forsaked (forsook) the forest, but I did end up forsaking that title. 

So, where did the current title come from?

In this novel, both of our loveless heroes are lost in their own different mazes of life and both make their living in and around the national forest of Rocky Mountain National Park, in Estes Park, Colorado.  And though the forest is beautiful and magical, it can also be dark and deadly if you’re unclear of how to navigate the twists and turns of its paths.  For Gabe and Luis, that is true of life.  Unlike with the national park, there is no guide to lead you to the safe stations in life or love.  You have to map it out yourself. 

Please join Gabe and Luis as they begin Mapping their ways out of their Forests and towards each other.

(Dear lord, that was cheesy, huh?  But that really is where the new title came from.)

Please join me on November 9, at Love Bytes, for the next blog tour stop.  We’ve mapped our way through this tour to the final posting. (Dear lord, I literally can’t stop.)  I’ve saved the best for last, where I will introduce you to a four-legged friend who plays a very important role in Mapping the Forest.

Blog Tour Stops:

  • October 28- MM Good Book Reviews
  • November 2 – My Fiction Nook
  • November 3 – Open Skye Book Reviews
  • November 4 – Prism Book Alliance
  • November 4 – The Novel Approach
  • November 7 – Scattered Thoughts and Rogue Words  
  • November 9 – Love Bytes


Mapping the Forest Blurb

Happily ever after has no map, but sometimes fate sends a guiding light.

Gabe Rice, a seasonal ranger at the Rocky Mountain National Park, can’t seem to get his life on the right trail. He loves the rugged beauty of the land, and there is no place he would rather live than the mountain community of Estes Park. But after six years, Gabe is beginning to wonder if he’ll ever get a full-time position or find love. When Gabe sees Luis—and hears his gorgeous singing—he’s compelled to meet him.

Luis Martinez, the new owner of a hotel and steak ride business in Estes, left California and a career as a therapist for a fresh start in Colorado. But even the beauty of the mountains can’t help him forget the past or move forward. Unprepared for his strong attraction to Gabe, Luis is ready to run and hide from emotions he never thought he’d have again.

Suddenly the path ahead opens to a future that looks brighter for both of them, if they can find the courage to walk forward—together.


Brandon Witt’s Author Bio: 

Brandon Witt’s outlook on life is greatly impacted by his first eighteen years of growing up gay in a small town in the Ozarks, as well as fifteen years as a counselor and special education teacher for students with severe emotional disabilities. Add to that his obsession with corgis and mermaids, then factor in an unhealthy love affair with cheeseburgers, and you realize that with all those issues, he’s got plenty to write about….



Brandon Witt is including a giveaway for a $5 Amazon gift card.  Leave a comment below and one lucky reader will be chosen by Brandon to receive the gift card.  Be sure to leave your email address where you can be reached if chosen.   Must be 18 years of age or older to enter.  Contest  ends  November 9 at midnight.

Mapping the Forest Links:



5 thoughts on “Brandon Witt on Choosing Book Titles and his release ‘Mapping the Forest’ (guest blog and giveaway)

  1. LOL – a little bit of title drama there. 😉 I like the title you eventually used. And the entire series sounds great.



  2. Lol I like the title that you went with ,and thanks to your beta readers! Congrats

    Chelcibrat16 at msn dot com


  3. I really like reading the tidbits of how a book comes together. Congratulations on the release and looking forward to reading it!



  4. I love it when authors ask for help naming books or characters on social media. I have participated in quite a few and it’s always fun to see the wide range people come up with!


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