Saturday, March 26, 2011

What's In a Name?

As an author, I always wonder if the Gloria you know would be the same kind of person as the Glorias I know. Surely the Victorias you and I know can't all be classy, elegant women. But somehow certain names evoke the same personality universally. Why is Chad always a handsome, muscular guy?

I chose Jim for my main character's name in Sunshine Boulevard. Jim is a solid, respectable name which exemplifies my character. Jim is also a name popular for men over 60.
The setting and the time the action takes place help to determine the names in a novel. Ryan and Tyler somehow don't seem to fit in a Victorian novel, but they could be the names in a contemporary romance.

Names are very important to quickly get a time, place, and personality established, but they can also jar the reader out of the story if the name doesn't fit. Name your characters with as much thought as you name your children....

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