And The Song in the Silver
A nose by any other name would smell as much.
OK, so Shakespeare didn't exactly write that but the question is "what's in a name". What he did write was that whatever we call it, a rose will still smell like it does.
True enough, however the success of what an author writes does depend on what it's called, what the characters are called and, yes, what the author calls himself/herself.
Joanne Rowling was told by her publishers that her target audience of young boys would not read a book written by a woman so she became J K. And plainly Harry Potter was chosen as a very ordinary name for a boywho could have been any of us but was ultimately very special. Perhaps if Tarquin Farquarson And The Philosopher’s Stone by Joanne Rowling had come out it would have sunk without trace there would have been no sequels or films, games, wands, t-shirts, theme parks?
So our rose smelling as it does is ok but writing about roses is a different thing. Umberto Eco apparently chose 'The Name Of The Rose' completely at random yet in the last line of the book he does note -"the primordial rose abides only in its name; we hold names stripped". For some things long since lost we have only the name.
I like playing with names as much as I do words. For my first book, His Secret Dancer, I needed a name for my secret dancer that would convey his secret - that he was a man dancing as a woman. He became Daniel/Danielle. He needed a partner and as I wanted to carry through the gender uncertainty she became Francine, known as Franci.
In my second book I was constrained by the brief that it be based on a Shakespeare play (I'd chosen The Tempest) and I felt it right and proper that I keep as many Shakespearean names as I could. Ferdinand and Miranda stayed, with only Ferdinand's gender changing, Ariel became an android called R.E.L. (see what I did there...), a possibly tortuous backronym for Robotic Empath Lifeform but Prospero became the starship that Captain Ferdinand was on board. Prospero himself stayed as a character but I mangled 'William Shakespeare' into Jacques-Pierre Guillaume for him. Please let me off that one...
For my new release, The Song In The Silver, I fell back on traditional Scots names. My paranormal romance features William Reed (actually my grandfather's name) and Mary. Both good solid names, with Aatu for my female werewolf - it means 'noble wolf'.
And as for my name...
Faberge was a Russian jeweler, maker of exquisite Easter eggs of gold and precious gems and the Nostromo was the space ship in the first Alien movie but originally a silver smuggler in the Joseph Conrad novel. Do I smuggle precious and exquisite things into my writing?
That’s for you to say.
And as for Raven McAllan...
The Song In The Silver – blurbs
A vampire's bite.
A werewolf's love.
Burned by silver and called by its song, he walks the night forever, protecting those he loves.
His mortal life stolen by a vampire, his undead life saved by a werewolf, William walks now in darkness. Scarred by her silver on the night he was turned, he secretly protected Mary until the day she died.
And now the fading song of their daughter's life has called him back to the glen.
Will tonight be the night he can reveal to her the eternal love that has kept her safe, and that will now protect her son?
He sat on the side of the hill, beneath the wind-stunted oak, and looked down on the thin stream of smoke drifting from the croft into the star-littered sky. A faint wisp of the Northern Lights swept like a wraith across the inky black. The wind flicked his raven-black hair from his face and stung his eyes.
She was in there. The time was coming. The conflict in his heart hoped that it might not be tonight, but that if it was, it would be before the dawn broke over the hills opposite.
The howl of a wolf echoed across the valley. He recognized Aatu's cry. She had been here always, before him. She'd been here all the time he'd been far away, far from the pain. She would still be here after he left.
A bird splashed in the dark reeds along the side of the beck at the cry, protecting her young from the night, just as he'd protected the woman in the croft when he could. And when his presence had threatened her, he'd left to take the threat far away.
He wrapped his cloak tight around him. He didn't need it against the cold. He felt neither cold nor warmth. He felt only loss.
He touched the deerskin pouch that hung from the leather thong around his neck. The soft vibrations of the uisge, the life force, from the silver cross inside were fainter now. One pattern of vibrations, one of the harmonies within the song, was fading; the pattern had lived with him for nearly a century. It was what had brought him back, the realization that one part of the song was coming to an end.
The journey had been long and hard. The dark highways of his existence had made it so, but he had come. And he would leave again. After he had had one last moment with her, to tell her. So that she would, at the end, know. Just as he had with her mother.
Faberge Nostromo's career has been one in the true sense of the word - "move swiftly and in an uncontrolled way"; expelled from school, he finally arrived, through fortuosity and belligerence, at a stage in life where he can genuinely claim to be a writer and musician. Whatever you do, do not encourage him.