16/04/2013

NINETEEN, NORAH & NAMES


NORAH  - Forty years ago we took my godmother Norah for a day out. My children were small, so NATURALLY we had to stop at a playground. Auntie Norah watched them shooting down a tall, bumpy slide and asked wistfully, “Do adults ever go on those?”
So that was when a very elegant lady rode a slide for the first (and only) time in her 80+ years. My husband took her up and all three children and I caught her at the bottom. She loved it, she said, but didn't go again.

In my NOVEL there is an old lady whom Albie helps to ride the Helter-Skelter - there are NO prizes for guessing her name!

And speaking of NAMES - I have a tendency to give every character a name because I think everyone deserves one, but in a novel it’s confusing, so in this draft I have left several people anonymous – they will have to be content that at least I know who they are.
I had also given two important women names that started with the same letter – always a bad move. I have changed one, but it’s extraordinary how hard it is to re-name someone and regard them in the same light. Of course another way to avoid this repetition is just to delete one character, which always feels like killing them.

NINETEEN - No, this is not the NUMBER of people I have killed off in my rewrite, but the number of years my present OH and I have been married. We remembered this morning when my daughter sent a Happy Anniversary text!
As it is usually me behind the camera there aren't many photos of us together. This was taken last Christmas Day on our NEIGHBOUR'S terrace - we were eating hallaca, a traditional Venezuelan dish which is a bit like a meat and vegetable pancake. Very filling!

15 comments:

  1. Nice photo & stories. 19 years eh!

    The earlier years and how you met might interesting to interested folks like me if every you feel inclined to reveal a little.

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  2. We met in a pub. There rest is sub judice!

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  3. I know what you mean about renaming characters. I needed to do it in my current novel because a critter pointed out that the name Doug, resembled dog, another character in the book. However, after a month Eric, the replacement name became the normal. Names are important.
    Francene.
    A - Z Challenge
    http://francene-wordstitcher.blogspot.co.uk/

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  4. Love the fact your anunty wnt down a slide at 80 more people should be like that. 19 years , I seem to remember around our 27th both of us forgot and rememberd a couple of weeks later. We have given up now it's past 30 years.
    Met in a pub. sound like me and my wife only I worked in one when she and I first met. I think I used to make her laugh as I seem to be alway half cut when she came in. I forgot about her for a while then bumpped into her in a pub one night while out with another girl. needless to say I let the other girl I was with go and six months later got married.

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  5. Bill - I hope you saw the other girl home first!

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  6. Lizy I am glad you decided to change the name of one character when you noticed two had names with a common first letter. I once started reading a story where there were three sisters and all three names began with D. It was a nightmare to read an one of the few times I gave up and didn't finish a book.
    I suppose a cheat way to do it would be to continue writing with the name you chose and then use Replace to change things at the end but I'm not sure I trust technology enough to try that.
    Ann (wordy)

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  7. I love the story and photo of Aunt Norah! What a great memory. Some of those old slides were pretty bumpy!

    Happy Anniversary :-)

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  8. Happy anniversary!

    And I know what you mean about names; they really do define a person, don't they? Me and my friends play a game where we give each other a name of what we think they look like they should be called. It's incredibly difficult!

    angelinetrevena.blogspot.co.uk

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  9. Happy Anniversary!
    Love the Norah story. She must have been pretty spunky. :)
    ~Laura

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  10. Love that photo of Norah on the slide. Quite often I come past a children's playground when returning with my dog after his late night walk. I sometimes think I would love to nip up there and take a ride - under cover of darkness, of course!

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  11. Happy Anniversary! Love the photo of Aunty Norah. I don't write novels so it's interesting to get that insight into how you feel about the deletion of a character, I guess by then they
    have become quite real to you.

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  12. Just stopping by for the A-Z Challenge. Please check us out and sign up to follow if you like what you see. Juliet atCity Muse Country Muse

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  13. Oh, I love this photo of Norah, how fun! And the picture of you and your husband is also lovely, congratulations to you.

    Thanks so much for coming by my blog, it's great to meet you! :)

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