Four Letters

I’m not talking about personal letters that came with words on paper via the mailbox, and required a stamp. Remember those? Or even notes or letters sent in email. Nor am I talking about four letter cuss words. We all know lots of them. But, I am talking about four letters of the alphabet as they relate to character names used in my books.

Why only four letters you ask? Well, I don’t know. But in looking back over my romantic suspense books, in Unlock the Truth the hero is Zach. In The Blue Dolphin it’s Jack. In Desert Exposure it was Mick, until I got feedback that Mick is not a well-used American name, so I made him Michael. But he’ll always be Mick to me. In Gone Tropical we have Jake. In London Calling I’m back to Jack.

Maybe subconsciously, I think that a hero of a romantic suspense novel has to have a strong but short name to go with his strong body, and his abruptness of the spoken word. Names are funny. ; )

Remember this from the movie, When Harry Met Sally? 100_1167

Sally Albright: Shel Gordon.

Harry Burns: Shel? Sheldon? No, no, you did not have great sex with Sheldon.

Sally Albright: I did too.

Harry Burns: No you didn’t. A Sheldon can do your income taxes, if you need a root canal, Sheldon’s your man… but humpin’ and pumpin’ is not Sheldon’s strong suit. It’s the name. ‘Do it to me Sheldon, you’re an animal Sheldon, ride me big Shel-don.’ Doesn’t work.

In my contemporary romance, Corsica Gate, my hero is Carlo. There are five letters to his name. Wow! Big things are happening here. Yep, stick around because I think my next contemporary, will feature Ollie, short for Oliver.

Heroine names have been mixed in my books, Dena, Debbie, Rachel, Amy, Dia Sophia, and Lisa. Now good old Ollie needs a love interest. So I’m asking you for help. Ollie is a Brit, he lives in England, on the Welsh border. He’s an artist. He’s really hot, and no he is not a P.I. or related to anything suspenseful, except for romance. His last name is York. I think Oliver York has a nice ring to it.

My heroine is American. She was born in 1988, in California. She’s of Jewish background. Her last name is Paverman. She has a mystery to solve and that takes her to England. Where she meets Ollie. Got any ideas for a first name?

Leave a suggestion/comment and I’ll pick a winner for a kindle or print version of Gone Tropical. GoneTropical_w8255_750

If I choose to use the name suggested, that commenter will also receive a print or e-Book of Gone Tropical and a boxing kangaroo pen.

Addendum, Friday 7th:

CONGRATULATIONS! and thanks for playing!

Winner of the a kindle or print edition: Jill

Winning heroine’s name: Naomi

The pen and a kindle or print edition goes to Nia.

roos and stuff 002

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34 Responses to Four Letters

  1. Charlene sands says:

    Hi Robena.
    I always like the names. Rachel and Allyson or Allly. Good luck in your search!!

  2. robena grant says:

    Thanks, Charlene. I like Allyson a lot but I’d shorten it and then have Ollie and Ally on the page, which would be confusing. But hey, I’ll store this one in my good names file. : )

  3. Hi Roben! Names are so important, aren’t they? Right away they put a picture in a reader’s head.

    Hmm… how about Sarah? Or Eden?

    By the way, I’ve loved all your hero’s names. 🙂

  4. robena grant says:

    Yep, I think it’s the picture a name gives me that makes me latch on, and the way it rolls off my tongue. And the way it works with the hero’s name. Don’t know why I’m having a hard time with this heroine’s name. : )
    I do like Sarah.

  5. Barb Han says:

    Love this post, Robena. For some reason the name Jill comes to mind. Not very Jewish, but I like the sound of it with your last name. 🙂

  6. Sam Beck says:

    Shoshanna Paverman! Sexy up front, hard-core at the end. 😉 Although, really, any woman’s name with three syllables is on the sexier side because saying it requires a lot of mouth movement. Ro-ben-a!

    • robena grant says:

      Oh, Sam. I can always rely on you for entertainment. Ha ha.
      But you know Shoshana is a lovely name and one I would never have thought of (although I know author Shoshana Evers and love her name) and maybe I could call my heroine Shana for short. : )

  7. JIll says:

    Zoe. Sara, Carol

  8. Monica says:

    The given name Nicole is of Greek origin and means “victorious people”. It was ninth on the list of names for girls in 1988. I want that pen.

  9. Monica says:

    The Jewish community in Greece currently amounts to roughly 8,000 people, concentrated mainly in Athens http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/History_of_the_Jews_in_Greece
    Of being a descendant of a unique heritage helps make your character more special. I want that pen.

    • robena grant says:

      You again!? Ha ha. I guess you do want that pen.
      Thanks for that, Monica. You are so right. I recall naming Dena after the Roman coin, and even though I never mentioned her Italian heritage in that story, it still defined her to me.

  10. Janie Emaus says:

    I like Anna. But then that was my grandmother’s name and I passed it on to my daughter. But whatever name you choose, I’m sure you’re heroine is going to be a great woman!

    • robena grant says:

      I also love Anna, but I named my daughter Anna (after her great grandmother) and I think every time I typed the name my own daughter and her ??loveable quirks, would rise to the top. : ) Maybe Hannah?

  11. the minute I read Paverman the name Lisa came to me. How about that? Lisa and Ollie.

    BTW, if my first grandchild is a boy he will be named Oliver. 🙂

  12. robena grant says:

    Lisa. I like that name Lynne, very much, but she’s the heroine in my current story. : ) And Oliver, love, love, the name!

    I have two great nephews, one is a little over one year old, the other six months old. The first is always called Ollie, the second always Oliver. Ollie is a dynamo, on the go the entire time and very observant and determined. Not sure how young Oliver will shape up, too soon to tell. Maybe he’ll be the quiet, studious, type and take after his dad.

  13. I like Lisa. It pairs well with Paverman. I’ve always loved the name Paige. Perhaps it’s my passion for reading? 😉 That is my suggestion. Paige Paverman.

    (Oliver is a great name for a boy! It’s strong and Ollie is a playful nickname)

  14. robena grant says:

    Hey, Trish. Glad you stopped by. I like Paige and that’s a name I never would have thought of myself. : )
    Isn’t it funny how names catch on and become popular? I’d never have guessed five years ago that people would love the name Oliver again.

  15. I was going to suggest Rachel. Or what about Sophie?

  16. Nia Simone says:

    What a fun idea! I do like all the names suggested so far. How about Naomi?

    Love Oliver too, and the premise for your book! 🙂

    • robena grant says:

      Glad you like Oliver, Nia. I worried that everyone would think it too old fashioned. Naomi is a lovely name. And it has the three syllables like Sam Beck suggested.

      • Robena – actually, Oliver is one of the top ten names for boys these days. Very popular.

        P.S. – Emily and Anthony are determined to only call Oliver – Oliver – not shortening it. Anthony managed to always be called Anthony instead of Tony – so we’ll see. That is, if the baby is a boy. Lately I’ve been seeing a girl in our future…

  17. Sally. I know…I still have when Harry Met Sally on the brain, but I like Sally Paverman. She sounds like a nice inquisitive Jewish girl. Good luck. Thanks for sharing the fun in naming a character.

  18. Names are so funny. Just starting a book. Heroine Cary Taylor. Hero Jack Fisher. I really like them both enough that for once I don’t think they will change.

  19. robena grant says:

    Yes, Judy. It’s good to fall in love with the main character names. That means a lot. I had a villian with a name I liked and he was linked to the entertainment industry. One night watching TV his name came up in the credits. Uh oh. Had to change that one and fast. : ) But you know what the new name is even better for a villian.

  20. Julie says:

    How do flower names sit with you? I love them, but not everyone does.

    Why I’m asking is because Rose is a strong but kind name, and it has a bit of the heritage you described. You could add a middle name (for a grandmother perhaps) and make it shorter or longer. And in a sweet moment, someone could call her Rosie.

    (I love picking names, we were planning of having WAY more children, so I have books full of ’em.)

  21. robena grant says:

    I do like flower names, and I love Rose. I have a very strong secondary character in the book I’ve just submitted for consideration. She is Rosetta but called Rose. So for the moment I won’t reuse it as “my Rose” would keep popping into my mind. : )

  22. londonmabel says:

    Oh! That little pen is so cute!!!

    • robena grant says:

      The pens really are cute, London. Wish I’d bought more of them. Came home with four, gave two away, and then did two contests. Drat! I’d searched every gift store in OZ and couldn’t find them (remembered them from a trip several years ago) and found them in the International airport in Brisbane about thirty minutes before boarding the ‘plane.