Today we welcome author Beth Wiseman as she gives us her insights into naming characters
Read all the way through to see how to win a free copy of Message in a Bottle. (hint, leave a comment with your email address)
How I choose my characters’ names:
When I start to write about a new character, sometimes I leave a blank for a while, until I have a better feel for his or her personality. Other times, a character has been percolating in my mind for so long that I can see their face, so I go searching for names—on Facebook. I’ll scan my FB pages and often choose a person’s first name that I think fits the character, then I’ll search for a last name. Once a name is chosen, it rarely changes.
But I enjoy throwing my friends’ names in the mix too. For example, in Message In A Bottle, there is a scene with a Houston police officer. I only know one Houston police officer, my brother-in-law. Without really thinking much about it, that brother-in-law—Scott Siewert—was suddenly doing the talking, explaining to my characters why he couldn’t file a Missing Person’s Report. And the cop continued to morph into a replica of Scott.
Also in Message In A Bottle, I used the name Diana as Kyle’s mother. Diana is a dear friend of mine, and she and her husband have six children. Maybe that’s why she came to mind, or maybe she’d just sent me a text or something, lol. But Kyle’s mother began taking on traits my friend has, a no nonsense kinda gal.
My characters in Message In A Bottle are in a witness protection type of program, so there are lots of aliases. That was a bit tricky. For Morgan, I needed a name that I could still relate to as my character.
Choosing names is huge for me. I’m guessing it is for most authors. So, let’s have some fun. My name is Elizabeth Mae. I mostly go by Beth. But over the years, I’ve been called Elizabeth, Beth, Liz, Lizbeth, Bethie Mae, and of course, Mom, lol. Do I look like a Beth? Or is one of those other names more suited to me (besides Mom!)
Beth Wiseman is best known for her Daughters of the Promise series and the Land of Canaan Amish series. Having sold over 1.5 million books, her novels have held spots on multiple bestseller lists, and she has been the recipient of many prestigious literary awards. Beth is contracted with HarperCollins Christian Publishing into the year 2019, and she has published fourteen novels and sixteen novellas to date.
Beth has a deep affection for the Amish and their simpler way of life, and while she plans to continue writing Amish love stories, she is also branching out into other areas including Christian contemporary romance novels and novellas. Need You Now, The House that Love Built, The Promise and A Tide Worth Turning are some of these recent releases.
Beth and her husband are empty nesters enjoying the country life in Texas with three dogs and a rooster. When she’s not writing, Beth loves to travel, paint, and enjoy time with friends and family. You can find Beth and her books at her website BethWiseman.com, Fans of Beth Wiseman on Facebook where she interacts with readers, and on Twitter at https://twitter.com/bethwiseman.
About Message in a Bottle
One man. Two women. A child desperate for medical treatment. How can Kyle choose between the woman he once loved and his current fiancée? Is there a solution that suits all involved, or will someone end up out of the triangle forever?
Morgan Calhoun and her parents are whisked away in the middle of the night, something Morgan always knew was a possibility because of her father’s CIA job. But she’d always thought if such a scenario played out that she would have time to say goodbye to those she loved—particularly her boyfriend, Kyle. Adding to her unbearable situation, several weeks after the move, Morgan finds out that she’s pregnant.
Kyle Brossmann doesn’t even get a break-up letter from Morgan. She’s just gone, along with her parents. His heart broken, Kyle continues with his plans. He graduates from high school and attends college, where he meets his fiancée, Lexie. But two men visit Kyle and encourage him to travel to an undisclosed location, where he will meet his five-year-old daughter. Rocked by the news that he has a child, Kyle learns he is the only person who might be able to save his daughter’s life.
Will Kyle choose his first love and his daughter? Or will he stay with Lexie and live the life they’ve been planning?
Each Surf’s Up novella takes the reader to a beach locale, weaving romance and adventure into a soul-soothing journey of hope.