Saturday, January 21, 2012

Naming Characters

I feel like one of the aspects of writing that is most challenging for me is naming characters. Sound simple, right?

Wrong. A name seem to define the character. It dictates how that character behaves, acts, reacts, talks, thinks, and feels. Shakespeare was clearly trying to be ironic or cheeky or something when he said the whole "what's in a name?" thing.

I've been working on character sketches for The Hostage Heart, my WIP, for a few months now. I finally finished the heroine's, and now I'm working on the hero's. I know, I know...I should've had these sketches finished months ago. But doing anything with 5-month-old twin boys around is difficult. As it turns out, character sketches are kind of difficult when you have no idea what to name your characters.

I think my hero has had about 5 different names through various versions of this story. My heroine is on name two. Important secondary characters have all gone through at least a few name changes. I finally have a name for my heroine that fits her just right, but nothing seems quite right for the hero. I just can't find a fit. And until I find a fit, I feel lie I can't move forward with the plot.

I'm doing as much of the character sketch as I can without the name. I'm hoping, if I really solidify his personality in my mind, the name will just come to me.

Here's to hoping.

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