Thursday, July 19, 2012

What's in a name?

Okay, at the end of my last post, I promised that I would explain how the name - Mystery Falls - came about, and why I chose the names 'Samantha' and 'Shadow' for the two leading characters.

Let's begin with the title - Mystery Falls. For as long as I can remember, I have always had a fascination for waterfalls and dark forests. There is something about the sound of running water as it cascades over rocks, the damp earthy smell which emanates from the ground, and the darkness of the trees as the canopy closes in above, which makes these places seem magical, mystical - at least to me.

With the first chapter of my book situated in a setting similar to the one I have just described above, I decided that the title needed to reflect not only a hint of what the story was about, but also the environment. Playing around with names such as Angel Falls, Mystic Falls, Feather Falls, I eventually stumbled on Mystery Falls and immediately liked it. Seeking my families opinion, and gaining their approval, the name stuck.

Moving on. Samantha - the name of my protagonist - was not chosen because of its meaning, 'good listener', but because simply and for no particular reason, it has always been a name I have liked.

And lastly, Shadow. As soon as the image of this character began to take shape in my mind, I knew his name had to be unusual, something not commonly used in society. Wanting it to reflect the mystery which surrounds him, and also a darkness, I began to search through my thesaurus for ideas. It was while I was researching alternatives for the word  'silhoutte', that I came across the term 'shadow'. Instantly recognising that it suited my character perfectly, I immediately adopted it.

And there you have it - the mystery of the names revealed.