This month of daily writing advice will include tidbits, tips, and sometimes tricks. This isn’t a replacement for editing or book coaching, it’s meant as a jumping off point for exploration and thought! I hope it helps! ~Amy
CHOOSING A NAME FOR YOUR MAIN CHARACTER: WHAT’S WITH ALL THE CLAIRES?
I read a lot and do quite a bit of book coaching and editing. My question for 2019 is now WHAT’S WITH ALL THE CLAIRES? I think I now have four writing clients with a Claire protagonist.
One of the best parts of writing fiction, to me, is naming my characters. I have two kids in real life — and now I get to name other people? Woo hoo!
While you don’t know when your book will hit bookshelves (or maybe you do) why not find a name that isn’t in EVERY SINGLE OTHER MANUSCRIPT OUT THERE? If Claire is your number one name, consider that it may be others’ favorite too. Wouldn’t you rather be unique? I know I would!
Instead of just searching a name book or list, look up something that tugs at you. Flower names, biblical names, one-syllable C names (like Claire, but not).
I look up names with double letters. (Ever notice my books have Izzy, Teddi, Betty, and Boop?)
I especially like to use the Social Security Administration list of popular names per year and/or state. But don’t stick to that — I will sometimes look before a character would have been born, because maybe their parents had a holdover fave!
It’s your book — write it with a Claire if you want — maybe consider a special nickname for her that her family uses. (Claire-bear seems cliche) One word of caution — funky spelling can be distracting — so Klaire might not be the best workaround.
Let’s help each other! How do you name your characters, and why? Have a great resource? Please share!
SEE YOU TOMORROW!