Blog Archives

NANP: Names In Jan Xu

For today’s Names: A New Perspective, I have Singaporean SFF author Joyce Chng stopping by to talk about the names in her Jan Xu series. Joyce also writes short fiction under the name J. Damask and is one of the very few Asian authors that I know of and interact with. Her work came to my attention rather recently and I’ve been meaning to give it a go for a while. Hopefully, the fast-incoming New Year means that I’ll get that chance soon. I read very little in the way of SFF that is not West-centric, but I’ve read some stuff here and there and have been exposed to some really great stuff, and its clearly a vibrant up-and-coming market as well. Besides, I’m always on the look-out for something new and the Jan Xu series seems like a good place to start. In the meantime, here are some of Joyce’s thoughts on the topic of names.

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NANP: Method To Madness

On Thanksgiving Day I bring to you Kenny Soward, the author of the GnomeSaga series and a regular short fiction writer, for the latest on Names: A New Perspective. I haven’t had a chance to read his work yet, the first GnomeSaga novel Rough Magic still awaits me on my iPad, but he’s certainly one of the more interesting authors I’ve been meaning to read for a while. Kenny is also a fellow contributor to the Manifesto: UF, which saw the publication of my short story Dharmayoddha and his story Gold Dust Woman was a stand-out story. Hopefully after reading this post you’ll be interested in his work as well. I certainly encourage you to check it out at least.

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NANP: The Sound of Names

Today I welcome debut author Laure Eve and her novel Fearsome Dreamer to Names: A New Perspective and ask her to share her thoughts on the importance of names in (her) fiction. A fellow cake and Haagen Dasz fanatic, she launched Fearsome Dreamer through Hot Key Books last month and even as all the praise rolls in, she is already hard at work on the sequel, coming next year. As a recent convert to urban fantasy, Fearsome Dreamer promises to be a really fun read and in anticipation of reading the book, I invited Laure to the blog and hope you enjoy her guest post as much as I did. Definitely one of the more fun guest posts I’ve had the pleasure of featuring here.

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NANP: More Than Just A Name

So here we are. Almost four months have passed since the last Names: A New Perspective was featured on the blog. I took a long break in between, but now I’m back and for the first post, I give you Patty Jansen, an Australian author who has experimented extensively with self-publishing and often talks about her experiences, sharing the nugget of wisdom that she’s learned over the years. I have several of her novels on my reading longlist since she writes some of my favourite type of fiction: Hard SF, Military SF, and epic fantasy. She is one of the first authors I reached out to for this brand-new edition and I’m really excited to have her on board, so here she is.

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“Names: A New Perspective” 4th Edition

A little over a year ago, I started a guest post series on the blog where I invited two authors every week to talk about names in fiction. I gave them a fairly open brief for it, to talk about what kind of naming conventions they used, what the names of their characters, etc meant, whether they went for certain resonance or what have you. The result was dramatic and outstanding. Every single guest post proved to be well-worth the read, to say the least, and I received tons of feedback from all of you, saying that you liked it.

In August, I posted the last guest post and then took a long break since I had kind of run out of authors to contact at the moment and just wanted to take some time off in general to let the whole idea gestate for a new version down the line. The result of that is this new edition of the series. I’ve spent more than three weeks getting all of this together, and despite some delays at my end, the authors have all been rather understanding, which has been great.

Enjoy the schedule!

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NANP: Making The Characters Fit

The final guest on the blog for this edition of Names: A New Perspective is author Bryony Pearce. Her second novel, The Weight of Souls, is coming out tomorrow in the US/CAN from Strange Chemistry and has already seen a UK release on the 1st of this month. The book is coming out when Strange Chemistry will soon be celebrating its first full year and it is definitely an exciting time for their various books. I’ve been interested in The Weight of Souls for quite a while now. I love the premise, I love the cover, and as I said in my cover round-up post from yesterday, Strange Chemistry has been putting out some great fiction since their launch, and this book looks set to continue that excellent trend. Today, here’s Bryony talking about the names in her book and what their relevance to the narrative is.

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NANP: A Process That Requires Aspirin

The first guest in August for Names: A New Perspective is debut author M. L. Brennan, who had an urban fantasy novel (featuring vampires) called Generation V released earlier this year from Roc Books. I’ve only recently started getting into the monsters subgenre of urban fantasy and I haven’t been disappointed with it much. Books like Amanda Carlson’s Jessica McClain series and Lee Collins’ Cora Oglesby duology have been quite good and I’m hoping that Generation V does the same for me. I love vampire movies, and I’d really like to be able to say the same for books as well. While I get around to reading the book, here is Brennan on the topic of names within his book.

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NANP: Name A Thousand Children

The final guest for Names: A New Perspective (July) is debut author and video game designer Jay Posey. His first novel Three, from Angry Robot, comes out tomorrow, and it is a novel I’ve been looking forward to ever since it was announced earlier this year. My desire to read the novel stems in a large part from the amazing cover by Steven Meyer-Rassow, which evokes a very strong Assassin’s Creed vibe for me. I’ve written a bit more about the cover on The Founding Fields, which you can read here. I’ll be reading the book hopefully soon, so expect a review in the not too distant future. In the meantime, here’s Jay talking about names and their importance and relevance.

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NANP: Nature of Names

This edition of Names: A New Perspective is going to be coming to an end quite soon and the first guest for these closing stages is this year’s debut author Laura Lam. Published by Angry Robot’s Young Adult imprint Strange Chemistry, Laura’s Pantomime (review) was one of my top favourite reads this year and I even put it on my Top Debuts of 2012 list [Yes, I know the publication date is 2013 but I read it last year, so yeah]. Pantomime was a really wonderful book, very much a fairy tale, and I enjoyed it a lot. Definitely looking forward to the sequel Shadowplay, which comes out next year in January. In the meantime, this is what Laura has to say on the topic of names.

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NANP: Naming Verisimilitude

Joining me today on Names: A New Perspective is one of this year’s most promising authors, Django Wexler. The first book in his Shadow Campaigns series, called The Thousand Names interesting enough, was released earlier this month and has generated quite a big buzz both before and after its release. I’m definitely interested in picking it up because I like both editions of its cover and because I like the premise of it. I’m buried under ARCs at the moment and am behind my reading as well so I won’t get around to the book anytime soon, but I’m definitely reading it this year. Till then, there’s Django talking about names in fiction.

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NANP: Names, I Love ’em

Today’s guest on Names: A New Perspective is Andrez Bergen who, going by the back-of-the-book blurbs of his novels, writes some really genre-mixing stuff that is as unconventional as you can get. Andrez got in touch with a while back about participating in a possible blog tour a while back and the great bit in his email was that he’s been a long-time reader of all the bloggery stuff I’ve been doing for almost a year now. Always great to meet a fan! I haven’t been able to read his latest (and upcoming) novel Who Killed The Great Capes of Heropa, but it sounds fantastic so I’ll be sure to check it out at some point. In the meantime, here’s what Andrez thinks of names in fiction.

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NANP: Names On A Train

Joining me today on Names: A New Perspective is Black Library’s most recent debut author, Joe Parrino, who has been putting out a lot of short fiction from them of late. I haven’t had a chance to read anything by him as yet, but I’m certainly looking forward to it. Joe has some great insights on the Warhammer 40,000 setting and seeing his insights within the context of his stories should be fun indeed. While you and I wait for Joe to put out a full-length novel, here are some of his thoughts about names in fiction.

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