Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Don't Judge a Hero by His Name

MOOD STATUS: "Grouchy". I have a backache that won't go away.

The other day my hubby (feigning interest in my writing-LOL!) was asking me questions about my manuscript (the manuscript that was just contracted). So I was in process of telling him the story when he suddenly got this strange look on his face and threw his hands up in the air to stop me.


"What's the matter?" I asked.


He stared at me for a second then asked, "Uh, what did you name your hero again?"


His confusion made me laugh out loud, because he is certainly not the first person to question my sanity over the name I had chosen for my hero. :)


As a matter of fact, a few months back I did a blog post on names for your heroes over at the Samhain blog. It was called: Beyond Jack and Jake: What to Name Your Hero.


If you missed it, you can read it HERE.

Go ahead. I'll wait while you do that. :)


**muzak version of "Thriller" playing...**


Oh! You're back! Great!


Well, if you read carefully I talked about "fashion limbo" names. Names that aren't typically viewed as masculine enough or even over-the-top enough for a contemporary romance hero.

Here's a few of them:

Bruce
Clark
Dean
Dennis
Don
Grant
Glenn
Lance
Neil
Jay
Todd



Well, pooh. I like a few of those. And I figured it was time to buck the trend. (I'm such a rebel)
As much as I wanted to name my hunky hero Jake, I resisted and used a fashion-limbo name instead. (My editor never said a word about it either)


I bet you're wondering what the name is I chose for my hero now. Well, I won't keep you in suspense any longer. LOL! My hero's name is...






Walt.



Yes, he's a twenty something Walter (my dad's middle name, actually) although in my soon-to-be printed book my hero strictly goes by just "Walt".



Are you as surprised by my choice of name as my hubby and critique partners were? :)

25 comments:

Ceri Hebert said...

I remember when I first started writing I'd go for those soap opera hero names, but in the past few years I've come back to reality and use basic names. My latest hero is Sam.

Walt is a fine name. Old fashioned names are back in style.

Chicki said...

"**muzak version of "Thriller" playing...**" - Girl, you're crazy!

You know how I feel about Walt ...

Jessica said...

Ewwww!!! LOL

Amanda Quick always chooses really old, weird names that aren't typically sexy, so I think if you make your man hot enough the name won't matter. :-)

Kristen Painter said...

Walt? That's...um...an interesting choice. lol Hey, I'm sure you can make it work in such a way that I won't be thinking Disney.

Eileen Astels Watson said...

I like a lot of those fashion names. And Walt sounds just fine to me!!!

CKHB said...

Walter means "commander/ruler of the army", so it's not really an unmasculine name at all! The old-fashioned names are coming back in vogue. I think Walt is great.

Have you seen this "name your hero" chart?

Tess said...

My father in law is Walt. Isn't it funny how names are so cyclical? And, love the musak version of thriller...very funny!

PatriciaW said...

Walt sounds find to me. Now if he went by his full name, Walter, that might not sound so great.

I like older names.

Kristen Torres-Toro @ Write in the Way said...

Hey, Jennifer! It's nice to meet you!

The fact that he's your hero and his name is Walt proves that there is a story there. I'd definitely want to read it to find out what it is!

Jennifer Shirk said...

Ooh, I haven't seen that name your hero chart. Cool!

Cindy said...

I like it! There are times when I wonder about the hero's name but then I read further into the book and the author does such a great job writing the character that I begin to really like the name. I bet that's the same with your book! Way to use something out of the ordinary!

KM said...

How cool. I've never read a book where that was the hero's name. I actually like some of the "fashion limbo" names, myself. Neil is one of my favorite names...ever... I haven't used it yet, but it will one day be in a WIP of mine ;)

T. Anne said...

Walter sounds distinguished. Walt is fine. It's very literary ;) BTW, I read the article, I remember it from the first time and you influenced my WIP!

Jenn Johansson said...

Walt is an interesting name for a hero. I don't like common hero names either. My hero's names are Cam and Parker (two different books).

Beth said...

First, I'm sorry your back hurts. Mine does too, so I "feel" your pain! Grr! Second, Walter is my husband's middle name, so he probably would've done back-flips if I'd had that conversation with him! :) I say it's a fine name!

Stephanie Faris said...

Walter is unusual but you can make that work for you, I think. Maybe the uniqueness is what gives your ms. its quirkiness!

My boyfriend's name is Neil. Funny that's on the list of no-nos! I'm going to have to let him know his name is a fiction hero don't.

Shelli said...

walt is a strong name.

lilly said...

OMG! I am sorry but that's actually very funny. I was cracking up when I saw the name.

FictionGroupie said...

I actually love W names. Wesley (Wes) is a personal favorite. My son's name is Marshall and people would probably not think that very hip either.

My male lead characters do have more soap-opera-y names though: Pierce, Rivers, and Lex

Jennifer Shirk said...

Lilly: I forgive you for laughing. LOL

T Anne: Oooh, glad to hear I could influence your WIP. Now I'm intrigued...

Diane said...

I like it and think it is great that it is after your dad. :O)

Jill Kemerer said...

Great name! And I particularly enjoyed the muzac edition of Thriller. Thanks!

Patricia Stoltey said...

One of my favorite mystery authors, Wyoming's Craig Johnson, has named his sheriff character Walt Longmire. It's a great guy name.

SJDuvall said...

I absolutely love unique names, and Walt is cool in my book :-)

Glynis said...

Walt is a great name, I love the way it rolls off the tongue.