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Monday, November 8, 2010

Help a girl out... name a character (or two)

Novel update.... I have only sent a proposal out to one agent and one publishing house. I know. It's not very aggressive. But I just want it all to be 'right'. And strangely enough, I'm not stressing. If the One who gave this to me wants to give it to others, He will... in His time. No need to stress.

I have asked only five people to read my manuscript, four of which are related to me. And the other I have never met (in person) but to whom am so very grateful. (Have I said 'thank you' today, M? Thank you.) The reviews have been more than I expected, and I am grateful and hopeful. (Did I mention four of them were related to me?) All that said... I am pursuing publication, and hope I realize that goal very soon. As always, prayers are longed for.

As I have been thinking through and working on publication avenues of the book I'm calling (for now) A View from There, I've been praying for Him to give me a new story to tell. Praying hard. And the answer.... a big fat NOTHING. A few times I thought I had something, then trashed it. And so I prayed more. But not even a glimmer of a storyline came by way. Not a theme. NOTHING. Until last week.

Last week, a story began forming in my head--one that I couldn't get away from. Once it came, I've barely been able to think of much else. Today I started writing an outline. An outline! Yay! I'm very excited about this new project and have some serious goals in place that hopefully will ensure I finish this project much faster than the last.

And that brings me here, asking for some help. A View from There is set in the south. Many of the characters are colorful and loud and as southern as we get. They are pictures of people I've known... variations of their personalities or my take on it, anyway. And almost every character in the book has a name with some sort of meaning to me. Don't worry. I'm no Taylor Swift. If we dated, and you broke my heart, I didn't name an ax murderer or the family dog after you in the book. But I do draw from my own life in every area possible.

This book I'm working on now is also set in the south, and I need some names, y'all. Some SOUTHERN AS IT GETS names. In A View from There, I used my great aunt Modean's name for one of my key characters. It doesn't get much better than Modean. Although I saw a name the other day I absolutely fell in love with. Ready for it? Billie Wanda. How awesome is Billie Wanda?

So I'm sincerely asking for your help. Give me those southern names in your family... Uncle Cletuses or Cousin Billy Rays. Or just a name you've heard and it just drips with southern charm. I want to hear them. All of them. And if you want... tell me about that person... a character quality that is unique or special or downright insane. And who knows? If this thing ever gets put in writing, you may be the one who named a character.

Give me what you got. I promise, everything will be perused and considered!


sara @ it's good to be queen said...

oh my gosh...i LOVE the name Billie Wanda!!! How awesome is that??

My granny's name was Mary Whaneta. She lived through the depression and honestly mostly had a pretty sad life. But she was so good to me and loved me well.

I also have an Ima Jean, Sonny & Clementine. :)

Can't wait to read your published book. :)

Sandi Mitchell said...

My granny's name is Iva Marie, and I have aunts named Beulah, Dorris, Annie Mae, and a Hazel.

Kate (Southern-Belle-Simple) said...

my precious grandfather (Carson) had brothers named Carnel (yes, like carnal knowledge), Cherful (like cheerful with a short e sound), and Casper. His sisters were Ruby, Ruley, and Illa (eye-la) Eunice. My great-grandma had a sister Lorene (low-reen). My other grandma was Eunice Violini.

I have lots more.

Sweet Talk said...

Billie Wanda is growing on me...and I like the name Velma Lois. :)

Anonymous said...

I had an Aunt Mamie. She was a little fiesty woman. My grandmas were Nancy Alice and Dora Belle. I loved them dearly. They were so different. Grandmother (Dora Belle) was prim and proper and very strict She was a great cook, seamtress and housekeeper. Ma ( Nancy Alice) was so different. Material things meant nothing to her. She was happy if she had friends and grandchildren to visit with her, while she dipped her snuff with a brush off a sweet gum tree.

mer@lifeat7000feet said...

My paternal grandmother was Iona Jewel. Her mother-in-law's name was Pearl McIntyre. I think that Pearl is a beautiful name. Some other family names that I find interesting are:
Leita Jean

I think the most unusual name I've come across is the name of one of our senior adults at a church John pastored in South Arkansas. The lady's name was Nylotis and she was the epitome of grace and culture. Simply beautiful.

Nick and Jessica said...

Edith Faye....the best grandma I could ever ask for. Levert and Garland Monroe.....the two greatest Christian grandpas I could have ever asked for.'s just that Southern. Thelma....everyone has an aunt Thelma. Gertrude....Myrtle...she was the crazy aunt.....

Well those are my suggestions. I can't wait to read one of your pieces!!! You are awesome!

Boni said...

I have a great uncle named Grady Bolding. To me, that OOZES Southern Farm Hand. Maybe because he was SO soft spoken, but his hands were caloused and hard. (I only met him 3 times in my life, but for some reason, those hard-workin' hands stick in my head)

I also have a great-aunt Chic ( heard it right, but it doesn't fit this scenario).

BTW, I am SO sad that I am not one of your "chosen readers"...pray harder for me to be one!

Cindy said...

I recently went to a southern funeral and it seemed that all of the women had the middle name Jo. I loved it! I think it is so fitting for a southern woman. A little sass with a lot of gusto. To name a few...Lisa Jo, Katie Jo, Kimberly Jo. Loved it!

Kim Hon said...

okay, so my mom's mom was named Mary Ruth. Her dad was Ellis. My dad's mom was really southern.... Vianer. Her middle name was Valentine, and my aunt's name is Delsa. Those are southern. :)

The Turnipseeds said...

I can not wait to read your book! Here are a few names I have heard, Ollie Sue and Nella Jay. Also, my great great grandmother's name was Zadie Elvira, cool right? Amos' grandpa's name was Deberry, I always liked it. Good luck:)

jill said...

Rose Ella was my great grandmother's name. I think it is charming, elegant and southern.

Kelsey said...

Hazel, Mary Kathryn, Ruby, Odell, Opal Laverne, Hollis, Ima, Irma, Delilah, Clayton...all family names. I LOVE southern & funky names, Hyale is one of my favorites of all time!

Christy said...

My grandmas' names are Ida Mae and Georgia. I have an aunt named Geraldine and one named Georgia Virginia, who goes by Ginger. My mom's name was Bobbie Katherine. She went by Kathy, but when she started treatments at MD Anderson they used her legal name. They would call for Bobbie and everyone was always expecting a man. She didn't like it at first, but after a few months she got used to it. She was named after her uncle Bobby Ray.

Virginia C said...

Isn't that aunt Pewee 4th from the right?

Virginia C said...

I believe from the right in the ladies is my grandma, Louella, then aunt Argerine, then aunt Pewee (Ina)

KStew93 said...

Pretty much all I've got is my Mammaw's name... Betty Louise. :) Describes her perfectly.

aimee p said...

My great grandmother was Minnie Clytie, and my grandpa's name was Archie.

The Turnipseeds said...

Amos just told me, his grandpa's first name was Elsner. Elsner Deberry, I have never heard that before:)

Aimee Bryan said...

Some of my family members names:
Beatrice, Ella, Effa, Violet, Trudy, Tootie, Esther, Pearl, Lena, Kathryn, Clara, Alice,

Durley, Sylvester, Gustavus, Roy Dean, Adolph, Rudolph, Lane, Del, Lonnie, Buddy,

Sherri said...

Oh, I love Billie Wanda, it's awesome! I wanted to remind you of some names from Welcome Home. Aunt Myrtle, Ola Faye, Ma Sylvia (Silvie), Lawnie, Ruth, Rosie, Arvil, Versie, Nora, Virginia.

Some of our family names from right here at the base of White Oak Mtn are Bessie, Bud, Oliver, Lucy, Maggie, Callie, and Walker.

Of course, I can come up with more if you want! LOL

Have fun! P.S. I can't wait to buy your novel :)

Kathy said...

As a preacher's wife, I have come across some beautiful southern names. Most are double names. One of my favorites is a very special lady named Delma Joyce. She is in her eighties, a retired teacher,local historian, and dedicated Methodist. Cooking for mourning families, mending and washing second hand clothes for the church clothes' closet, making layettes for the poor. She has listened to so many of Carl's sermons over and over that she can and does quote them often. She is a jewel and we love her.

Guillen said...

Are you ready for this? My great-grandfather, my mom's grandpa, was one of 10 and all of their names started with G. Here you go: Grady, Gus, Gaith, Gertha, Geneva, Grover, Gilbert (we called him Uncle Gib), Gurn (that was my grandpa and what the G stood for in G.B.), Glyda, Gussy, and I can't remember the last one. I might be wrong but I think this is all of them. Insane huh?

Anonymous said...

my great grandmothers name was Dovie jo
my great grandfathers name was lawrence his nickname was "Dooger"! The road they lived down is now called Dooger Loop! Dovie jo never drove any type of vehicle in her life she stayed home and took care of their children Glenna Sue, Sandra, Gary, Celia Ann, Kay, and Kevin! They always had chickens, cats, dogs, and sometimes even a goat roaming around in the yard!

Kim Hon said...

oh yeah, one of our old neighbors' name was Lona Jay. She was the sweetest lady alive. Also, I had an Aunt Elsie, and Elvie, an aunt Viva Jean, uncle Grady. Aunt Madge, aunt Nellie Mae, Carlene, Verna Lou, Gladys, Athaleen, Zettie, Jeweldine... Lester, for a few more. Lol

The Young Family said...

My granny's name was James Claudeen. They thought she would be a boy. Picked out this name. She came out a girl and they just stuck with the it. Later in life, she chose to be called Claudia, which I LOVE! We always called her Granny Colt, because she lived in a small, VERY small town...Colt, Arkansas.

Tyla said...

One of my dad's sisters was named Fairdenia and we would call her Aunt Fair. Other, older people in the family would sometimes pronounce it Fairdeany. She was such a sweet, sweet lady and left a hole in our family when she passed.

Good luck on your book.

Nel said...

You go girl! Can't wait to buy and read your novel! It will happen. And so exciting that you have another one even an outline! That is so cool. Bet you never thought you would see so many names. I have a list for you too, lol. My granny was Minnie Evelena,they called her Leaner for short and my grandma was Rhoda Ann.
And of course there were lots of brothers and sisters names, Belva Ann, Arvie Marie, Iva Hester, Zora Mae, Mildred Elaine, Cleo Lilus, LaVada Clois called her Vada, those were all aunts. Then Delbert Lee and Covie Gillette, William Wesley, some of the uncles and grandpa. Have fun!
until next time... nel

Ragland Family said...

Here are some from my family and my husband's: Ambrose Dudley (my great-grandfather, he chose to go by A.D. or Bud), Verlie (Travis's grandmother, she liked to tell scary stories to little children) and Walsie (His other grandmother. My favorite thing was her attitude. At Thanksgiving one year, she got a piece of pie. Her daughter tried to get it away from her b/c Walsie was diabetic. Walsie quickly told her that if she didn't give her pie back, that once she got home she would bake a pie and eat the whole thing!)

John R.G. said...

Grandpa remembered some friends of his parents from Virginia and their names were Bert and Dolly. I just thought they sounded cute together.

mer@lifeat7000feet said...

Thought of some more...

Mercie Mae
Alma Mae
Gloria Jean

Anonymous said...

I read your blog often and enjoy your sweet family!! Here are some names I thought of
Cletus Eugene (husbands grandpa)
Della Gae
Ina Rae
Irma Sue

bella<3edward said...

One of my good friends growing up was Micah Cheyenne- one of the sweetest, most graceful women I know.

Another friend recently had a little girl. She named her Lyla Gail Jean Couch. Now that's southern.

Anonymous said...

Beatrice was my great-grandmother's name on my dad's side of the family.

Sarah Fries said...

Uh, Hello?
Wilda (aka Wildee?)
Vaughn (personal favorite!)

Another southern thing that is seen in our family is weird nicknames...Pug for George, John for Bill or is it Bill for John???

Ask dad b/c they have some crazy names out there in PG!

Chad & Bettina Crumby said...

Clara Lucille - my middle name is Lucille as well after my grandma.
And I have an Aunt Willetta.
And nothing as Southern as my g-pa Bud. lol his real name is Willis, but he goes by Bud Baker. :)

Anonymous said...

Southern family names, and names of my children:

Annabelle Grace (after my grandmother)
Nita Ruth
Shirley Ann
Jackson Walker

Linda said...

I am new to reading your blog and it may be way to late to respond to this request, but I couldn't resist giving you a few rural Arkansas names:

Clione Delta (they called him CD)
Barnettie (named after her daddy)
Caleb Arvard (called Peck)
Danell Nova(calley Sonny)
Yvette (pronouned "Y" vette)
Billie Catherine
Mattie Gertrude
Lynnie Mae

I love reading your blog!