A touch of reality

nameA few weeks ago, the Huffington Post did a piece on the top baby names popular in 2013 that led to a site called BabyCenter.com and their list of the top 100 names of the year. In my recent interview on the Romance Books ‘4’ Us blog, I encountered a question regarding how I choose names for my characters. Needless to say, both got me thinking about the naming process.

If you haven’t guessed by now, my modus operandi is hiding things in my stories. I’m kind of like Alfred Hitchcock that way. lol I think tucking nuance here and there makes storytelling more intimate. It’s no different when I pick names. Sometimes I just like the way the name rolls off my tongue, or I know someone with the name. Sometimes I know the history of it and the historical aspect is the nuance I’m looking for. Occasionally I try to pick names that hint at personalities. But mostly I choose names that lend themselves to levels of intimacy.

Example: The name Elizabeth. Friends, coworkers, family, and love interest might use nicknames depending on how well they know Elizabeth. As a writer, I find this familiarity adds another layer of depth and a touch of reality to her character.

A search revealed these options to use: Elle, Lise, Elise, Elisa, Bette, Ellis, Ellie, Betty, Betsy, Bette, Bee, Liz, Lizzie, Beth, Libby, Lily, Liza, Eliza, Lisa, Bess, Bessie, Leeza, Bettina, Tibby, Izzy, Elsie, Liddy, Ilsa, Ilse, Babette, Lisette.

Several of those nicknames for Elizabeth feel a little stodgy for the levels of intimacy I’m imagining, but I could certainly see myself with an Elizabeth called Liz by her best friend, Lizzie by her older brother, and Betsie by grandpa.

I find names fascinating. This week ~ all about names.
And speaking of the week to come…


Opening for Guests tomorrow!

A place for your old stars to shine


bee1Back to business after a month of seeing to other things, I’m all over the web this weekend. If two things are listed for one blog, scroll back to see what you’ve missed.

My interview at Romance Books ‘4’ Us

Weekend Writing Warriors & Seductive Studs& Sirens http://theancillarymuse.blogspot.com/

Sneak Peek Sunday

Set the Scene in Six (open author promo – come leave yours!)

Sexy Snippets


Another 100 Things Blogging Challenge! For 100 days, I’ll post something from my chosen topic: Words on the Verge of Extinction. There are 95 entries to come.

Here’s one for today:

Canitude (noun common in 1656-1742)

greyness; hoariness; whiteness


all7books-smallLove Waits in Unexpected Places – Scorching Samplings of Unusual Love Stories

Sample my love stories for free!


4 Us iconToday we have an interview with author Paris Brandon.

All through January the RB4U authors are doing interviews. The thoughtful questions are a great way to get to know us. Commenting that day gives you a chance to win a collectable t-shirt. Come see!

And..check out the new January contest and meet the RB4U authors! http://www.romancebooks4us.com/


b1e43-eqpicToday is Set the Scene in Six. Come share your backdrop or lead-up!
Several promotional opportunities for romance authors can be found on my Exquisite Quills group blog. Meet the founding authors and our guests.


Exquisite Quills Yahoo Group

First Kiss Wednesday ~ share your best 300 word kiss.
Set the Scene in Six ~ share your backdrop or lead-up on Sundays.
The Genesis of a Book ~ share the spark that ignited your novel
Author Interviews ~
We’re booking late spring now.



About ~RoseAnderson

Rose Anderson is an award-winning author and dilettante who loves great conversation and delights in discovering interesting things to weave into stories. Rose also writes under the pen name Madeline Archer.
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2 Responses to A touch of reality

  1. Good blog, Rose! Appropriate names are so important for characters to be believable. For an historical romance novel like THE CHEVALIER: http://steamereads.com.au/product/the-chevalier/
    I chose names appropriate to the Georgian era and also to nationality.
    For example, Madeline, the heroine, is French while, Gareth, is part English, part Scandinavian.

    • Love the name Gareth, Jacqueline. I followed your link..great reviews! I think I’ve just found one of this years binge novels. (I read fiction in one sweeping binge that could span a dozen or more books before I’m done)

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