Harlequin Mills & Boon Medical Romance Novels

What’s in a name?

I’m writing a novella and having a problem moving forward. I think it’s down to the heroine’s name. I initially had her as Andi.

That didn’t gel.

Changed it to Amber.

waking up aussie version
One of my few book covers with a single woman on it

Wrote a little more – still not happening for me.

Changed it to Becky.  She’s been Becky for 18,000 words now and I still have to stop and remind myself of her name when I write anything about her. Something’s not right.

I think I might need to change it again… but to save me working my way through the alphabet (which is what seems to be happening with two As and a B so far! LOL) I need to think of something that will stick. And quickly. She’s a doctor, aged 30 with auburn hair and blue eyes.  The hero is Daniel (Danny and Dan)…  It has to be something I haven’t used before…Jessie, Mim, Dani, Skye, Poppy, Cassie, Sasha, Georgie, Kara, Kate, Ivy, Holly, Chloe and Jenna. Her surname is Neale.

Thing is, it has to be right- I can’t write anything if I don’t have an image and a feeling and a perfect name. (Some names just won’t do. Mavis, for example- apologies to all the lovely Mavis’s out there, but I had a particularly rude client once called Mavis.)

Am I the only one who has weird associations with names? Any names you adore or any you’d stay clear from?

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13 thoughts on “What’s in a name?”

  1. How about Georgina Neale? Perhaps she likes being called Georgie but hates George. I change names of my characters regularly until they fit right next to each other. Good luck with the novella.

  2. You are absolutely not alone! I can’t write if I don’t like the heroine or her name. Same with the bloke. He’s got to sound hot and he has to match his name. No ifs ands or buts about it. She sounds like a gal who has fun. Is she a funster? Here are my suggestions – hope they help: Vallere, Jane (Janie), Macy, Zoe, Sian and Jess(ica).

    Good luck finding her. I had a hero once who wasn’t working in the slightest and I realised it’s because I thought his name was stupid. I changed it and all of the sudden I had the hots for him. Go figure. Shakespeare might have been wrong.

  3. Names are so hard and trust me, they only get harder the more books you write and the more names you’ve used….I’d advise you to quit while you’re ahead but that would be a travesity xxx

  4. Weird, isn’t it, how important a name can be to our muse? I have a book (didn’t sell, but plan to revise into single title one of these days because I still like it) where my heroine’s name just didn’t feel right. Was struggling writing the story and finally decided to change her name. It was magical! As soon as I started writing it again she immediately gelled in my mind, and so did the story.

    To help you out, I decided to try something scientific – I pulled out my name book, closed my eyes, randomly stabbed at a page and the name is…Soutine. HA! Somehow, I suspect that one’s not going to speak to you 😉

    Good luck, Louisa! Let us know who she ends up being!

  5. Oww! I feel your pain, having just emerged from the same kind of names madness. Thank goodness for search and replace. (I ended up with Miriam, AKA Mimi.) The worst thing is finding something I like and realising it’s the name of a friend who would be mortified to find their namesake in one of my books!

    Since the beginning of the alphabet hasn’t worked out for you, how about the end? Zoey, Xanthe, Yelena ??

    1. You always have such great idea, Annie! I never thought about approaching it from the other end of the alphabet! I like Zoey…maybe I could go with that? I’ll give it a go. Gotta love find/replace- makes it easy!

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