Thursday, February 16, 2012

Feature and Follow Friday #9

 

Feature & Follow Friday is a weekly social blog hop between book bloggers. There are two hosts: Parajunkee and Alison of Alison Can Read. If you want to join in, click on either of their blogs to get the details. The FF question of the day is:

Q:  I like unique names for characters and am looking forward to coming up with some when I start writing. What’s the most unique character name you’ve come across?

The most unique names are oddly enough the most difficult to remember. They're from hard sci fi; the kind of names with apostrophes in the middle. But if we're discussing unique as in appealing, memorable and rare, I'd have to say Delores Haze, aka Lolita, because of the way her various nicknames play into her characterization. 

Four, from Veronica Roth's DIVERGENT, is another unique name (albeit a nickname) that comes to mind. But a lot of unique yet forgettable names run rampant in fiction. On a different note, there's the unique name convention that prevails in romance novels, in which a hero named Chance Strongfront or some such thing is accepted as having a totally unremarkable name.

Ultimately, I don't think it's as important that your character's name be unique, as it is that it fit the character. Nadine Cross from THE STAND struck me as such a good fit for the character that it took on unpleasant qualities as a name in and of itself. There's nothing wrong, per se, with the name Nadine, but just as it happens with a bully in elementary school or a horrible ex, the name became linked for me with the sliminess of the character and her subplot.

31 comments:

  1. Hey, I'm a new follower! I think that there are a lot of really unusual names out there and there's always so many to choose from!

    http://eileenlisblog.blogspot.com/2012/02/follow-friday-15.html

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    1. Very true, Eileen. Thanks for following!

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  2. Nadine does remind me of a slimy character. Good choices!

    Don't forget to enter my international giveaways!
    The New Death and Others eBook Giveaway
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    Jez@Jez's Bookcase

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    1. It's terrible; I could meet a wonderful person named Nadine and I would still associate something unpleasant with her! Thanks for stopping by.

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  3. Fortunately, the names that gave me grief where like #10 or so in the common name arena but then there will be always be a first time. Epss. Old follower. My FF.

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    1. Unless you make one up, it can be surprisingly difficult to find a name you like that isn't really popular or in another recent novel. Thanks for checking out my post!

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  4. I hadn't thought of Four--but I do remember thinking is that really what everyone calls him? After reading the entire book it makes sense but still it's a number--not really a nick name. (IMHO)

    Shanan
    http://thebookaddictnet.blogspot.com/2012/02/follow-friday-14.html

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    1. I'd have to reread to be sure of how it's used (nickname vs. something else), but whatever it is, it works so well with the plot! Thanks for reading my post!

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  5. Bummer for all the Nadine's out there ... lol. Mind you, Delores (no offence) sounds like a porn star. Happy #ff, I'm a new follower to the blog and here's mine for follow back! http://kristyberridge.blogspot.com.au/

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    1. Haha. Delores definitely has fallen out of favor; it does sound vaguely sordid now. Thanks for reading!

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  6. Lolita! LOL. I like Four, too.

    I'm a follower.
    http://notjustnonsense.blogspot.com/2012/02/ff-feature-follow-11.html

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  7. Hey Tarah, New Follower...meant to do that the other day sorry. Great post!!!


    Ali @Ali's Bookshelf

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  8. I really liked the name 'Four' in DIVERGENT and got kind of attached to it (trying not to spoil here). I like shorter names I've discovered :D

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    1. I got attached too! I'm curious to see how I feel about the use of his name in INSURGENT.

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  9. Hi, new follower popping by. I still haven't read Divergent! *sad face*

    Here is mine: http://bookprowl.blogspot.com/2012/02/follow-friday-2.html

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    1. If you like dystopian at all, I think you'll love DIVERGENT. But I have a couple of books like that, that I've been meaning to read but just haven't. Thanks for following!

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  10. Great post! There are so many unique names out there, you hardly read a book without a different name included. Two nicknames that come to my mind are Terrible from Stacia Kane's Downside Ghosts and Hitch from Stacey Jay's Annabelle Lee series. Not terribly different, but unique all on their own.

    Here's our FF

    Have a great weekend!

    Jamie @Addicted2Heroines

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    1. Just blogging by, happy Friday!

      http://tributebooksmama.blogspot.com/2012/02/feature-follow_17.html

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    2. @Pennsylvania: I'd never heard of the nickname Terrible! It makes me want to check out the book. Thanks for reading!

      @Tribute Books Mama: Happy Friday to you as well!

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  11. I think it's so true that a name can be linked to a characteristic after a book character is related to it. I hope I never fall for a certain name just because it's a character I've disliked. Following!

    Preet @ AWR

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    1. Yeah, it can get complicated when you add the whole world of book character names to the real world. It's funny how strongly we associate things with names. I've known people who didn't want to name their children the same name as an ex, or someone they disliked growing up. Thanks for stopping by!

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    2. Man, I remember when I read "American Psycho", since the main character and I share the same name, I got to feeling very down on myself.

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    3. Haha. I can imagine that would be traumatic. But then, there are far more real Patricks to balance out the equation--St. Patrick, Patrick Stewart, Patrick Suskind. The list is endless! At least you don't get asked if you're named after a fictional plantation house in a racist classic. Total blow to the ego.

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  12. Hey, I'm a new follower! :)

    Those are some awesome names! And no, you're not alone at blanking when trying to think of names!
    I LOVE unique character names!

    Have a FABULOUS Friday!!!! :D

    J.B.
    http://jbkantt.blogspot.com/

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    1. It wasn't too bad, but after all, it was a Friday! Hope you enjoy your weekend.

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  13. New follower! Love your answer about the apostophrophes in the middle of the names, lol! Here is my FF if you'd like to follow back: http://theonceandfuturelibrarian.blogspot.com/2012/02/follow-friday-7.html

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    1. Kary, you have the best blog name! I'm hopping on over to check it out. Thanks for stopping by!

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  14. New follower straggling along trying to get to all the linky's this time even if it takes all week.

    I too think weird names can be counterproductive. Especially if you have to guess how to pronounce them.
    Some of the best, however, come from real historical names. I have chosen two names of that type.

    I’m at http://steepedinbooks.blogspot.com

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    1. Wow, getting to all the links will be a challenge! I might try to tackle a few more myself.

      I agree, it's counterproductive when a name distracts the reader.

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