A to Z Challenge 2013

Monday, April 18, 2011

A To Z - What's In A Name?

If there's one thing that is the bane of my writerly existence, it's names.  Whether it's coming up with a name for my main character or figuring out the title of a given WIP, I usually sit there staring at a blank page for hours with no ideas.  And names are actually really important.  Think about it.  If Frodo had been called Brutus instead, wouldn't it have changed things a bit in the reader's mind?  Names (or titles) evoke certain ideas in our minds, whether we consciously think about it or not.

Every once in a while I do stumble on a story where all the names just pop into my head unbidden.  The first thing I attempted to write for example, was titled "A Moment To Breathe".  The main characters were Frank and Rosalie.  And I knew it as soon as I sat down to tell their story.  This is an exception however.  The current story I am working on still has no title.  The main character thankfully has a name, but the girl who may turn out to be a romantic interest remains obscured, her name hidden behind some veil I just can't pierce.

I'm not sure if it's something about the way my mind works that keeps me from being able to put a name to my characters, but it definitely gets frustrating.  I will even go so far as being able to flesh them out in great detail and yet still not have a moniker to hang on them.  Maybe I should just call every guy Bob until the real name comes to me.

This is another short one, but if anyone has advice on how they deal with names, I'm all ears.


DEZMOND said...

oooh, I love making up names and coming up with the new ones, and to stick with your illustration in the pic above, I also love giving names to my cats ;)

Eric said...

Dez - LOL, that's funny. Now I know who to call when I'm stuck for a name.