Wilhelmina—Or Not

You’d think by now that I’d check the internet for famous character names before placing them in my books. Nope, not me. Apparently, I write in a shell.

It was recently pointed out that the main character in my new picture book shared a first name with a very popular, already published picture book character, Angelina Ballerina.

‘No!’ I thought, ‘Not again!’

Yet despite my internal tantrum, it was again and it was time to fix it.

1. Encapsulate the character’s personality
2. Blend syllable length and rhythmic flow with the character’s full name.
3. Elicit a certain feeling
And my newest:
4. Make sure it’s not already the name of a famous character!

Over the past three days, I’ve looked at hundreds of name lists, spent hours on Thesaurus.com, and added girly suffixes to pages of my favorite adjectives.

The result? The more I thought about it, the worse it got. Angelina to Wilhelmina and everything in between.

My character went from a sprightly, magical being to a variety of flowers, spices, campy descriptions, and eventually a 90-year-old woman crocheting socks in her rocking chair.

Luckily my subconscious has been on duty and a name came to me in dream. (Yeah, naps!)

Will it work? Well, it’s going to work for now. As for the future … fresh eyes, time, and a good internet search will tell.


1 Comment (+add yours?)

  1. Big Dee
    Jan 07, 2014 @ 16:10:33

    Your terrific outlook brightens my freezing morning and truly makes me smile! Can’t wait to learn your character’s new name.


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