Last week I shared how waiting for the release of my new book, The Reluctant Billionaire, is similar to the process of expecting a new baby. And like any new baby, my book needed a name. It was a challenge to come up with the title.
There is more to a book than the title, though. There are also character names to come up with. Not just the hero and heroine, but all of the characters, from those that get mentioned once to the names of their close friends and family.
There are around 300 descendants of my paternal grandparents. My dad was one of 12 brothers and sisters who had more than 40 children among them. Their children (my generation) had children, and so forth. The family continues to grow each year as more marriages and babies are added.
My husband is from a large family, also. When we were naming our babies, we had to take all of our relatives’ names into consideration. We didn’t want to use a name that belonged to another family member. There weren’t as many in my dad’s family back then, but it was still difficult.
Also, a lot of my friends were having babies at the same time I was and I didn’t want to use any of their favorites.
It’s no wonder, then, that the task of naming our children was a challenge.
The same is true of every story I write.
When naming characters, I take into consideration all 300 of my dad’s family, along with my relatives on my mom’s side, my husband’s family members, plus friends and even acquaintances. I don’t mind using a name that I’m familiar with, but I want to make sure that the characteristics don’t emulate anyone I know by that name.
A lot of thought went into naming the characters in The Reluctant Billionaire. In the original manuscript, the hero and heroine had different names. Then a couple of people appeared in my life with those very names and it didn’t feel right to use them anymore. So I started listing all the possibilities and by process of elimination, I came up with the names Liam and Jessica.
Now that I have written Liam and Jessica’s story, the names fit them exactly right.