Zeynepnur Cavcar
Zeynepnur Cavcar asked Sally Green:

I was wondering about the meanings of the characters' names like why did you use Nathan or Arran. Do you have specific reasons?

Sally Green I struggle with names, in that I seem to spend a lot of time on it and when they're not right I know it and it seems to take ages to get it right.
In the original ideas for HALF BAD I lost patience with trying to find the right name and so used names that I knew i.e. names of my friends and family. What a nightmare that turned out to be ! I changed them all in the end (well most of them tho' a couple remain and the relative and friend involved don't mind).
I don't choose names for meanings but I do try to get a name that feels right. I struggled to find Nathan's name for a long time - I think Nathan was about the fourth name he had. Arran is a name I've loved for a long time (since I knew someone called that) and so I just wanted to use it. Jessica just seemed perfect for Jessica, and Marcus for Marcus.

I've experimented with names that are opposite to what you might expect - so Clay (tough, huge, strong, very physical bad guy) was called Malcolm for a while! Needless to say this did not work and he became Clay.

In HALF WILD there is a new character called Nesbitt and I called him this because in my head he looked like the actor James Nesbitt. I intended to change the name but after writing for a while it just felt right and I couldn't think of him as anything else.

The weird witchy names are hard to decide on too and there's always the worry that they sound ridiculous but again they have to suit the person - Mercury and Pilot for example do seem to me to be appropriate.

Finally there's the issue of naming things too. The Fairborn (the magical knife in HALF BAD) originally didn't have a name and as soon as I gave it one it took on a much larger character and larger role in the story. I chose this name because in my research on knives I knew it would look like the Fairbairn Sykes knife.

Thanks for the question.
S



Sally Green
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