1)Mentally construct the character by setting up a skeletal story line, add goals, motivations, conflicts, physical features, voice, history, THEN
2) Give 'em a name
This can take a while. More than a few hours, less than a week.
The first time this process didn't work I had a mini panic attack. I'm a few chapters in, working on a scene with the male protagonist when I suddenly realize his name doesn't fit who he is. It just sounds Wrong. His appearance, reactions, his core personality do not gel with the name I dubbed him with. Continuing on with his story cannot happen unless I change his name.
Then worry set in. Will changing his name make everything I've written about him feel off? It'd be like changing one of my children's names after being their mom for three months!
or titles and last names were different?
- Sir Milton/Sir Lancelot
- Willie Pomeroy/Willie Stark
- Sam Cosgrove/Sam Spade
- Brenda Everdeen/Katniss Everdeen
- Harry Goodman/Harry Potter
- Holly Blake/Holly Golightly
If you could have a different name, what would it be?