30 October 2011

Getting It Together...

Winter Wonderland?

This is what it looks like in Scranton, PA this fine morning.  I'll bet the upper tier is something to see!  Just yesterday, those flowers had their blooms.  I'm sad to see them go...sigh.  Zutchka is LOVING this snow, which is his first!  He chased snowflakes, romped, plowed his nose through, and ran wildly back and forth across the yard ALL DAY yesterday.  He likes the colder weather, and apparantly downright cold weather, too.  Ha!


Fellow ROW80 Author, E.A. West, is hosting her first ever promotion!  Let's show our support!

3- My first ever promotion Trick or Treat for Ebooks is going fantastically! I politely asked the people at Authors on the Cheap on Facebook if they wanted to share the promotion (by politely, I did not just blare it on their wall. I used the Contact Us form at http://the-cheap.net). If you have a book published and aren't using this resource, you should. Read the NOTE on the Authors on the Cheap Facebook page for how to format and share you Nook and Kindle links with them once per day for one book. They use this pool to fill many walls on Facebook tailored for specific Nook reads and have blogs for Nook and Kindle users.

Stop by Deana Barnhart's blog, where she was gracious enough to have me over for an interview in her weekly theme, First Fridays...

My Photo
I am a thirty-something mom of two...sometimes three depending on how the hubby is acting:) I love to constantly think of stories to write and every once in a while those ideas make it to the computer. I have no college degree (as of yet), no special credentials--just a love of writing. Maybe lil' ole me can make it in this writing biz with just my mind and an outlet. If I'm super lucky I can help some other newbies along the way. I love, in no particular order: zombie stories, reading anything to take me out of real life for a bit, watching storms on the front porch, sunsets, making new friends and my family. I blog on Tuesday and Friday or whenever I am dying to spill the beans about something.

The typing goes on...

I've hit the halfway marker in Her Dark Baron.  Honestly, I think I've added about 5-6K, but who is counting?  I'm excited about the changes I've made, too.  I cannot wait for beta feedback on this story!  I'd probably be further along, but I've had a rough week.  The boys had Harvest Parties at school, loads of homework, I had to drive my older son to work and home a few nights (Uhhmm...I go to bed around 9:30 usually.  This required me to pick him up at 11.  Needless to say, I felt like a zombie from Wednesday on.), and my Dad landed in the hospital.  (He's going to be fine even though he's still in there - and I cannot leave him up there without a daily visit!) It's times like these that I think a laptop would be a good investment...hhmmm.

NaNo Countdown... 

I've just about completed my prep work for NaNo!  Woo-hoo!  I need to name all my secondary characters, which is a fun but daunting process - for me.  Names are so influential, in my opinion, of how we view a person or character.  Choosing the one that will convey the associations I wish is one of the greatest challenges for me.  For starters, no one is likely to have the same 'feelings' about names as I do.  Secondly, unless I work the meaning of the given name into the story, it is equally unlikely that the reader will know the name's meaning and therefore, the back story it would evoke.  Last of all, selecting a name that is 'different' or 'ethnic' can be just the right fit - or it can backfire.  It's a very fine line we writers walk in this naming business... Ha!

How about you?  Is naming characters your favorite part of 'setting your stage' or the most difficult?  How do you choose the names for your characters?

Please excuse me during November....I'm thrilled.  I'm terrified.  I'm beyond ready to get started.  I'm wishing I had another week to prepare. 
If I am slow to visit around, it's because I'm giving my all to hitting that word count for NaNo.  I always visit back, follow back, and link-back - I just might be doing it at a slower pace :}  Thanks, everyone! ~ Nadja


  1. names so important - sometime tho' only I know the significance unless the reader also like names and looks them up. I am having a bit of problem with all mine for nano at moment so they may have to have rubbish names for a while - it's a modern setting in East of England and names will need to fit the age groups however they do need to fit my ideas as well ah dear!!!

    will maybe see you in the chaos of nano! all the best

  2. I agree that names are important, some characters are easier to name than others, also Deanna sounds like a fun blogger, will check her out if I remember. You've got a lot done despite all the RL stuff going on. Best of luck for the week.

  3. Nadja, that makes perfect sense. Something has to give during NaNo, and your writing buddies understand. :) Naming characters is so fun! I agree it can be hard, but it can also give you ideas and inspiration for additional layers of back story. It is likely readers won't ever notice how perfect your names are for your story, but for the rare reader who really wants to understand where you were coming from, the names you chose can lend insight. Good luck kicking a** at the beginning of NaNo!

  4. Great job on your NaNo prep! Names are really important, but it's also easy to spend too much time worrying over them. Ew on the snow. Not ready for that!

  5. I love naming my characters! When I was 21 I bought a 2 inch thick over-sized book of international baby names, which nearly gave my future husband a heart attack. But I comb through it, marking off names I like the ring of, or search for names that have meaning that any reader is unlikely to know, but I find it suitable so I go with it. That and the physical setting of my first scene are among y favorite parts of writing. Good luck with Nano!!

  6. Wishing your dad a speedy recovery.

    Family can certainly throw a schedule out of whack, LOL, I have school Halloween parties tomorrow.

    Naming characters...hmm. Most of the time the character's name just kinda shows up. Either during another character's interview, or in a scene where the name is used. When I have to actually search for a name, online baby naming sites are my friend, and I love finding names based on the meaning vs. the actual name :)

    Good luck with NaNo.

  7. Great job on NaNo prep and your progress on Her Dark Baron! I agree, names are really important, and sometimes I end up changing the names, as my characters grow and evolve. For my NaNo book I have several unnamed characters still, am hoping to get them named by Tuesday, otherwise they will be Baddie #2 and Unnamed Mayor (and other names like that) until they tell me what their names are!

  8. As someone from that general in PA (though not there at the moment), I can't believe that you guys got snow! That is so ridic.

    Congratulations on your ROW 80 progress! Sounds like you had a very productive week. Hitting the midway mark is a great milestone!

    Hmmm, naming characters...to be honest, I find it to a boring part of writing and it always kind of bothers me when I see a story where you can tell the writer spent A LOT A LOT of time finding the PERFECT name. Often the names are really neat, but in real life, names don't work out that perfectly. The interesting thing that happens for me is that rather than letting the name define the character, I tend to hand out names sort of randomly and then this thing happens where the character BECOMES the name and I can't imagine them ever named something different...I do like naming characters from cultures other than my own though, because then I get to research all these fun names. Like, I have a couple Turkish characters in my current WIP and Turkish names are a lot of fun!

    Sorry for the huge comment. Good luck with your goals in the coming week!

  9. I think naming is such an interesting but tricky part of writing. I tend to just use the first one that comes along and change it if I feel at a later date the name isn't working!

    Hooray for the NaNo prep! I should have put a similar 'disclaimer' on my blog as I am worried about getting round to check-in on others but I guess lots of us are in the same boat! Hope the next few days go well, roll on November 1st!

  10. Naming a character usually comes easy for the main characters. The hard ones for me are the secondaries. This is what I'm running into with Aeris, so many secondary characters that I have to name. For now, I've given most of them only a placeholder. :)

    Good luck with the writing, and YES a laptop helps!!

  11. I love names. I've never lived in one city for more than four consecutive years in my life, so I've known lots of interesting people with interesting names. I often tap into that. Also, I look at obits in the paper. Amazing resource for interesting names. And a lot of times there's a picture to add the "mental image" aspect.

    I'll be a NaNo cheerleader this round... good luck!

  12. I love love love names, and I always take forever to come up with them. I've been obsessing over name generators lately, and I have a ridiculous list to pull from if there are stray characters that wander 'on-stage' while I'm writing in November.

    Whoo-hoo, the countdown is upon us! I can't wait to get started. :D

  13. I find names incredibly important too! I usually give characters a working name and then pick one out when I know them a little better. Glad to see you're doing Nano too - I'll have to find you on the site!

  14. Oh, man. Sorry about your dad. Hope you get him home soon.

    Ref: names
    I actually spend a lot of time choosing the right names for my characters. Sometimes if the right name doesn't hit me right away, I'll give them 'marker' names until the I figure it out.

    PS I'll email you later today to answer your question at my blog. Thanks!

  15. Naming characters is a hot topic! And I couldn't agree more - baby name sites are a real help! I'll be visiting around over the next few days.
    NaNo starts tomorrow!!! Oy! ;}

  16. Names for me are hard. I keep a list of character names I might like to use one day but even those don't always fit my stories. Good luck with NaNoWriMo!

  17. To me names are important because I can build a connection with a character that has a name that "speaks" to me. I also keep a list of my potential character names (just like Ryan). This is very helpful when my mind draws blank

    I'm off to check Deanna's blog. Thank you for introducing her!

    It is understandable that you need to cut down on certain activities when you are engaged in such an intensive project as NaNo. Best luck to you, dear.

  18. Nanowrimo!!!! lol I gave it a shot last year, and the year before, and the year before. Finally taking a breather this year I suppose xD It really wears you down (but so fun!!)I LOVE the cover of your book! It looks so darn professional and really really sexy *giggles*

    I think you've found a fan xD

    oh, and in response to your previous comment,

    @Nadja: WELCOME!!!! gah I love seeing a friendly face. I think I know exactly what you mean lol. But you know what they say, some people talk because they have something to say, and some people ta;l because they have to say something xD