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10 January 2018 @ 10:36 am
Yesterday and the night before it rained like a car-wash. Very nice for a writer who gets to stay indoors, at least until classes start up again.

I'm at the point in First Draft (of the next vampire book) where I have to sit down and organize my Guest Cast, which means finding names for even fairly minor characters so I won't get hung up when I need them. This is always fun, because I'm also figuring out who the villain is, who are the red herrings, what's the name of the villain's wife's maid (or, is the villain actually the WIFE, and in which case how much does her poor spouse know about what's going on?) This is AFTER I've figured out the big technical things like, COULD an ocean liner be attacked by German submarines a day or two from landing in New York? (Yes, after March of 1917).

I have a book called, Mrs. Byrne's Dictionary, (I think I've mentioned this before) which contains all sorts of obsolete and archaic words, like pantarbe (a mythical stone which supposedly attracts gold magnetically) and forslack (to hinder by laziness). A lot of these sound like names. Thus, the maidservant gets called Miss Malkin (a dish-mop) and Don Simon's rather thick-headed henchman is Captain Palfrey (a mild-mannered riding-horse). I have a book of seventeenth-and-eighteenth-century French slang which I can use for the same purpose. There is also, of course, People's Names, by Ingraham - names of every ethnicity and culture including Native American and Tibetan, with sections on ancient Babylon and Classical Greece and Rome. (The Rome section is a doozy!).

Georgette Heyer used to name characters after towns and villages in England, which I've done also. A World Atlas is a fount of possibilities.

Lately I've also used a wonderful website called Fantasy Name Generators, which spews forth TONS of likely-sounding names: Cajun, Ibo, Tahitian, Phoenician... suggested tavern-names and place-names... Some of these I'll use as they appear, others I'll tinker with for something that sounds right.

I start back teaching Feb. 5, so I'm getting as far forward as I can. First Draft is always a bitch.
John Louis: Crossbowgrail76 on January 11th, 2018 01:53 am (UTC)
Palfry was used in the Game of Thrones books a few times. I had to look it up.
Great sources of names.
Elizabeth McCoyarchangelbeth on January 11th, 2018 05:19 am (UTC)
I love Behindthename.com, too!

(And, hm... https://donjon.bin.sh has some nice stuff. The Markov one is good! Where's the one I used... http://www.seventhsanctum.com/generate.php?Genname=greeknamer ? )

...help, it's a rabbit hole!
"Solving A Maze By Burning It."
"If A Punishment Doesn't Reach, The Punishment Doesn't Teach."
"There's No Plan For Madness."

John ZeivelJohn Zeivel on April 16th, 2018 08:47 pm (UTC)
So there will be another 'vampire book'
Great news! Just finished 'Pale Guardian' and loved it. The principle characters continue to evolve...as well as their love/hate triangle...against the backdrop of the Great War. Can't wait for the next one in the series.
Eleanor SkinnerEleanor Skinner on January 17th, 2019 06:00 am (UTC)
book questions
Can you tell us the name of the book of seventeenth-and-eighteenth-century French slang? That sounds kind of neat and I can read French.

I read 'Dreamers of Black Rock' recently and really enjoyed it, as well as the story with Sun Wolf going back for Altiokis' grimoires.

Will you ever do paper versions of the Further Adventures? I'll buy them in whatever format they come out, but I really do like having paper copies also, plus they're easier to give as presents. You could do a thin trade paperback for each novella, or you could collect them by series - Four Further Adventures in Darwath Arranged Chronologically With a Catchy Title for example.
Mary Branscombemarypcb on January 18th, 2019 09:08 pm (UTC)
Re: book questions
oh very much plus one on paper copies; I *have* the ebooks and haven't got to reading them because I like reading on paper so much more