Names are important. A name should tell you something about the bearer of that name. Traits, habits, personality, or wishes for that person: happiness, wisdom, joy. In some cultures, the giving of a name is one that takes a lot of time and deliberation. A child remains unnamed until he or she has reached a certain age and a suitable name can be chosen or acquired. In other cultures names are given at birth and at certain special moments in life, either adding to the first name or replacing them.
Here in the Western world we usually don’t give that much thought to a name. We have to give a newborn a name a soon as possible because all kinds of official parties want to register the new human and need to know its name. And most of all, need to make sure it keeps that name. If names were changeable, it would result in total chaos. Or so I’m told.
One of the more difficult things of writing a novel is creating its cover.
Telling a story is easy. Granted, telling a story that captivates the audience and keeps them reading and enjoying what they read is a lot more difficult. Still, plotbunnies are always incessantly multiplying in my head. I can’t help it. I look at something and pop, there goes another bunny. It’s harder not to be creating stories all the time.
Writing them down is a little harder. It’s more like closing your eyes, putting your hands on the keyboard, opening your eyes again because you’ve forgotten to start the writing-software (I’m using Scrivener almost exclusively now, even though I’d rather use Writemonkey’s distraction-free modus), then close them again. And let your fingers go. Just type. Anything. That’s actually what the NaNoWriMo is all about, but you can do it in any month you like. I just write. Often I don’t know what I’m writing until I see it on the screen. Usually (if my eyes are open) that means that I frown a the text and wonder what twisted mind has come up with that one.
It’s remarkable what a woozy mind can come up with when it’s night and it should have been asleep. Staying in bed unable to sleep is useless, so when that happens, I usually get up and do some computering. Lately, computering consists of ‘writing’ (or as in tonight’s case, outlining).
In the original ZaakX book, there was a wee little water sprite called Pwyll. Those who read that awful first draft know what it’s ultimate fate was. It was blasted into vapor by Cyrilla, at the end of the book. For no real reason, except that it had been foretold, loooooong time ago. Fact is, it was totally pointless, the whole sprite. So in rewriting the book into Nexus, I cut Pwyll out.
But just as with some other characters, it had a mind of its own and returned in the form of Paul.
Pauls character in ZaakX was ‘Ping Pong’. Now there’s a name to inspire fear and awe and such. He had a tiny chapter full of sillyness. But he was in a futile kind of way important for the plot, thin as it was. So, Paul became Ping Pong, and that was that.