Monday, February 5, 2007

A Rose By Any Other Name

Naming characters causes considerable consternation (not to mention alliteration). For Regency-era writers, if we are to be absolutely true to the first part of the 19th century, every heroine born around 1800 would be Mary and her hero would be John. Boring.

I am reminded of a trip to Scotland my husband John (who’s not boring) and I took with a friend, also named John. We met up with several Scottish couples in an Edinburgh pub. We began as strangers, but after a few pints we were all fast friends. Every man was named John, every woman named Margaret. Scary.

So, it’s been fun to name my characters something a bit less plebeian than Mary (or Margaret) and John, still keeping true to the times (no Heathers or Ambers or Tiffanies allowed).

In By Midnight: Cynthia and Harry
In Waking Beauty: Penelope and Dominick
In Third-Rate Romance: Eleanor and Lionel (Regency)
Eliza and Link (Western)
Ella and Liam (Chick Lit)
Evangeline and Lucien (Vampire)…anybody see a pattern here?…
and Kelly and Paul (the hapless author and her real-life honey)

That's right. I'm juggling five romances in one book. I'm crazier than Kelly.

How about you? What have you named your fictional babies?

And now, for pure fun, and because it's not romantic at all...

Your Ten Names

Margaret (Maggie) Robinson.

2. YOUR GANGSTA NAME: (first three letters of your name, plus izzle)
Magizzle..or Marizzle if we’re being formal.

3. YOUR “FLY GUY/GIRL” NAME: (first initial of first name, first three of your last)

4. YOUR DETECTIVE NAME: (favorite color and favorite animal)
Pink Seal (I’m not dead from a kiss from a rose)

5. YOUR SOAP OPERA NAME: (middle name, street you live on):
Maniero Vineyard (yum, buy your cheap red wine right here)

6. YOUR STAR WARS NAME: (the first 3 letters of your last name, first 2 letters of your first name, first 3 letters of mother's maiden name)
Robmaman (looks kind of French to me)

7. SUPERHERO NAME: (favorite color, favorite drink)
Pink Champagne (Hah! My super power: I still act like a lady no matter how much I've had to drink)

8. YOUR IRAQI NAME: (2nd letter of your first name, 3rd letter of your last name, any letter of your middle name, 2nd letter of your mother's maiden name, 3rd letter of your father's middle name, 1st letter of a sibling’s first name, last letter of your mother's middle name...have you given up yet?)
Abnauna (but I refuse to wear the burqa)

9. YOUR STRIPPER NAME: (the name of your favorite perfume)
Chanel (and I’m #1)

10. YOUR WITNESS PROTECTION NAME: (mother and father’s middle name)
Franziska Trumbull (that just seems cranky)

Have a great week, whatever you call yourself. And Chapter One of Third-Rate Romance continues under Maggie's Manuscripts for your reading pleasure.


terrio said...

I honestly have no idea exactly where I got my character's names. I've always loved the name Cecelia but I'm big on nicknames (I'm Theresa but have been Terri forever) so I shortened her name to Celi. The Cooper just seemed to flow with it.

The hero was harder to name but at some point the name Bryan came to me and then Riggs followed. It's amazing how once you name them they become real people in your imagination and they become so much more real.

Tessa Dare said...

You named your vampiress Evangeline?? Well, I hope her Lucien is hot stuff. :)

My own characters' names are very pedestrian. One of my CPs has a heroine with the same (rather unusual) name of my 3-year-old daughter, which gets a bit weird at times.

Your names all turned out so cute! My are all laughable. M-Rob sounds like a gangsta; E-Ort sounds like a drive-by victim in the Hundred-Acre Ghetto.

Maggie Robinson/Margaret Rowe said...

Terrio, my husband always wanted to name a daughter Cecilia (it was his mother's middle name). He was outvoted three times, but I do love the name.

And Eve, at least you be hangin' with my bro C-Rob and W-Poo!

terrio said...

My gangsta name of T-Osb just doesn't sound good either, Tessa. If I use my maiden name then T-Den is not quite so bad.

Maggie - my ex wanted to name our daughter Cheyanne. Yeah,

Lenora Bell said...

Your names were cute--I liked Pink Seal.

Thanks so much for telling me about the Spiced Tea Party! I love that blog so much--I'm a crumpet strumpet all the way.

Lindsey said...

Awesome blog, Maggie! Your characters have great names, as do you for almost any occasion! ;)

I've always been really interested in names, so it shouldn't be at all surprising that I've made them central to my storyline - confusion over names is part of what sets my plot in motion. It's just hard not to make them a confusion for me or my readers!

Call me L-Fab. :D