I’ve finally baptized my villain. Her name is Halley. Like the comet. Her official classification is vengeful stalker. She’s off her rocker.
I went through a number of names, but didn’t find one I really liked. I perused the Social Security’s Most Popular lists (for the 1980s) and consulted my Baby Names For The New Millenium book, but nothing I picked had that special feel to it. Names starting with S were out of the question (too many of those already) and nothing Spanish would work (too common on Guam). Eventually, out of desperation, and because I felt the strong urge to procrastinate, I browsed those It Happened The Year You Were Born sites. And voila, Halley, the comet (early 1986).
Halley is perfect. It’s not run of the mill (I think) and somewhat memorable, especially when paired with “you know, like the comet.” It fits the person I see in my mind.
I like naming characters. And of course, I completely over-research. Some characters are “born” with their names, some go through a few of them before I find the right one. In most cases, I have a name before I have a character. On one occasion I named a character after a person I actually know (Stoney), once I went with the suggestion of a friend (Ben, which is short for Benicio) and Halley’s last name came from a street sign (Krukowski).
I’ve had a number of discussions and e-mail exchanges about the correct spelling of Soren’s name. He has an umlaut in his name (you know, the pair of dots above a vowel). I compromised; his American passport has the Americanized spelling, while his Swedish passport shows the umlaut (not entirely realistic, but, hey, it’s fiction).
In other words: names are fun. And Halley is going to be a great villain.