Tuesday, July 8, 2014

Romance Weekly Blog Hop - How do you Choose Character Names?

I hope everyone had a great 4th!!! This week's questions are brought to us from Jeanne McDonald. Welcome to those who've hopped over here from Leslie Hachtel's blog http://lesliehachtelwriter.wordpress.com!

1. How did you go about choosing the names for your characters?

Since I write Scottish historical fiction, I predominantly use historical genealogy charts to select names, but then I also cite the caveat that all characters are a result of the authors imagination on the copyright page. I am presently working on a series where there are about six men named John, so to avoid confusion, I've used variations like Iain, Eion, and Sean. One of the supporting characters in my current WIP was John Stewart, Earl of Lorn...so I call him Lorn in the manuscript.

2. Where did the inspiration for your current book come from?

The remains of Brochel Castle on the Isle of Raasay
I've talked a lot about Beauty and the Barbarian, so I'll make mention of Return of the Highland Laird (A Novella), which will be released on August 15th: I had intended for the Highland Force Series to be a trilogy, but the books became popular quickly, and I decided to write a novella to cap the series off (at least for now). Ian, the hero in Beauty, has a brother, Alexander, and I wanted to tell his story. I am so familiar with the 16th Century world that I built on the Isle of Raasay, it's fun to spend time there. Who knows? there may be another Highland Force novel in the future *rubs hands and grins*

3. What methods do you use to ensure you have no plot holes (journal, storyboard, outline, editor, etc.)?

As I've mentioned before, I am a plotter and I use a spreadsheet to outline my plot. I massage my plot as I write. I also review the MS at 50 and 100 pages, and then again before I write the ending. I think doing a lot of my reviewing upfront helps avoid some of the common pitfalls that can plague writers when they are editing and realize something major doesn't make sense.

Next up on the hop, click on over to Kim Handysides' http://kimhandysides.com blog. Kim always has insightful and thought provoking answers!


There's still time to enter the Beauty and the Barbarian signed print book giveaway! And I'd love to see you at the Return of the Highland Laird Cover Reveal on Facebook!

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  1. I see we share the curse of the Johns

  2. I am intrigued. Why so many Johns?

    1. Because they were real people and even in the fifteenth century John was a popular name :-)

  3. I'm impressed by your use of genealogy charts. What a brilliant idea! Keeps things accurate. I use popular name lists for my contemporary stories to keep accurate.

    1. I use name lists for my supporting characters :-)

  4. Return of the Highland Laird sounds fabulous. Good luck with the book launch!

  5. I think when a setting such as historical Scotland is involved, it's easy to be inspired. Such rich history and interesting setting! :) Great answers.