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Booklover68
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Registered: ‎01-27-2007
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Characters in books

[ Edited ]
I would like to hear from authors about how they pick the names of their characters. I can almost tell the good guys from the bad at the beginning of the book by their names.

If a book is very involved and has many characters, it would be nice to have a reference page at the front of the book to list their relationships to one another. Many times I had to go back and find a certain person's previous history, so I can make sense of the story. There was one book I read a long time ago that had a reference section, and it was very useful.

Marika

Message Edited by Booklover68 on 01-27-200703:30 PM

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kkfern
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Re: Characters in books

Greetings

That is an interesting thought. When I was a programmer we called it end line thinking. That is when we programmed something we would start at the end because we knew what we wanted. So it is also with writing. In the end we know the character of our character but not the handle by which to know him.

That is the trick. I find it better to not give a common name. The reader will then identify with a person they know instead of the person you are creating. A good example of this is Harry Potter. How many Harrys do you know? The second trick, and this is a trick, is to give the name something that you can picture. Another good example is Potter. So without knowing it the reader will have the picture of a potter going on in their mind so they will automatically associate it to the character and therefore have an easier time following the story line because you know whom they are talking about.

Keeping these ideas in mind will make the reference page unnecessary. It is also one of the reasons I picked Fern as a pen name. Writing is not only about the skill, it is about the tricks.

Yours,
Kathryn Fern
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Booklover68
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Re: Characters in books

O.K. Here is another question. Do you think it is harder for a male author to write a first person story where the main character is a female?

I just started reading The Dogs of Babel, and I am completely taken with the Ms. Parkhurst's keen ability to write from a man's perspective. Is that a special talent.

Marika
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Booklover68
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Re: Characters in books

[ Edited ]
Hi,

Do you write? I write short essays about things I have been experiencing since I have retired.

When I was still working, three of us at the office signed up for "word-for-the-day", and as soon as we had a week worth of words we took turns composing a story. It was one of the most enjoyable time for me. We didn't know where the story will go. It started in Cuba and ended in Venice. In between we had done a lot of research, so I can appreciate how much research authors have to do when they undertake a new book.

Marika

Message Edited by Booklover68 on 01-29-200705:06 PM

Message Edited by Booklover68 on 01-29-200705:06 PM

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spikeandsora
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Registered: ‎01-29-2007
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Re: Characters in books

I have been writing many books and stories, and what I do is I adapt off of other names. Such as these:
Zexion-Zelion
Sapphire-Saphir
Some I just take some names with a different personality, and also I just think of names randomly.
"No second chances. I'm that sort of man."-The Tenth Doctor
"As everything is born, they are also condemned to die."-Haku