Wednesday, July 27, 2022

Characters...Choosing names to Suit ~ Lorraine Nelson

Do you struggle with naming your characters? Believe it or not, I don't. A name is sometimes the first thing that strikes in Zakia and the Cowboy.

I worked at a call center in town until my health got the best of me. One night, while I was answering phones, a caller named Zakia came on the line. The name stuck in my head long after the call ended and I found myself jotting quick notes to go with the name.

Zakia, exotic name, needs a hero with simple name, ergo, Luke.

Zakia, long blond hair, emerald green eyes, 5'8" tall

Zakia, banker's daughter, wealthy family, used to socializing, partying, and having attention

Zakia, interests include, cooking, baking, gardening, and charity work

Zakia and Luke, married young, divorced young

Luke, third generation rancher in Alberta

Luke, collar length blond hair, sapphire blue eyes, 6'4"

Luke, rancher/cowboy, thinks Zakia left him because she got bored with ranch life, when in truth she hated competing with the ranch for his attention.

All of this I jotted down between calls that same night and Zakia and the Cowboy was born.

Daydreams & Night Scenes

In this story, I needed a name for the heroine that could double as a man's name. She became Miranda, Randi to her friends. The hero is a rich playboy and I decided on Alexander, a strong name the hero has to live up to by the end of the book.

Her Unlikely Bodyguard

Jemma Leigh is the name of the heroine in this story. Why? Because it popped into my head at the right time. :) It was a distinctly feminine name for a strong woman, proving that a woman could be both. Theodore, her Teddy Bear from high school, had graduated and joined the army. Years later, Jemma Leigh and Ted are both back in their hometown and second chances just might be possible as they reunite and he appoints himself her bodyguard against the stalker who's threatened her.

Still undecided? Pick a name, any name, and go with it. If it’s not a good fit, your character will eventually change it for you. Happy Writing!

1 comment:

Julie Lence said...

Hi Lorraine: Names sometimes come easy for me and sometimes they take forever, especially last names. In my current WIP, I agonized over the hero's last name for days until I settled on something I like. But thing is for certain for me, if I don't like the names I've chosen, I can't get inside the character and write the story and have to come up with new names. BTW, Love the name Zakia!
Thank you for sharing your writing process.