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  1. Link the Writer
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    Link the Writer Flipping Out For A Good Story. Contributor

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    I want to use the name of this historical figure but...

    Discussion in 'General Writing' started by Link the Writer, May 2, 2011.

    I don't know if it's a good idea. What is the name? John Torrington. Trouble is, most people associate that name with that poor bloke who died in the Franklin Expedition and is now buried at Beechy Island.

    Basically in my sci-fi series, there's was once a British commander named Commander John Torrington who was famous and well known. Having died sixty years prior to my story, his ship has bee retrofitted to serve as a galactic cruise ship.

    Well, in one of my stories, Helen and Kenthew decide to vacation on this ship and while they're there, they meet the daughter of the ship's new commander who claims she can "see" John Torrington's ghost. Of course, no one but Kenthew believes her (as he has magical abilities and is able to sense if she's telling the truth or not).

    The cruise ship, running out of fuel, lands on an icy world to replenish and that's when trouble happens. Ice monsters appear and begin to drag the ship below.

    To make a long story short, this little girl who sees ghosts manages to help defeat the monsters and get the ship off the planet. (Why they're attacking this ship I'll have to figure out at a later date. That and the whole ghost sub-plot as well.)

    Basically, this long-winded explanation is asking: "Is it okay if I have a character named Commander John Torrington and have the story that uses that name take place on an icy world with ice monsters that want to kill everyone aboard?"

    The commander himself didn't perish in the ship or on any icy world. He perished in his London home safe and secured. He's described as a loyal, motivated determinator who would do everything and anything he could to get himself and his friends out alive.

    But...somehow this girl sees his ghost and acts like he talks to her so I'll have to address that issue...
     
  2. Mallory
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    Mallory Mallegory. Contributor

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    Yes! Why not? Lol, read your own signature!
     
  3. katnip
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    katnip Member

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    hey, its your story. to be honest, i've never really heard about that guy in an extentive text; just his name vaguely referred to. i wouldn't worry about it so much.
    good luck with your story
     
  4. Chachi Bobinks
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    Chachi Bobinks Senior Member

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    I've never even heard of the guy, I don't think. I'm sure you'll be safe but hey! Like Mallory said, take your own sig's advice. ;)
     
  5. Alex A.
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    Alex A. Member

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    John who? On the what expedition? Could be an homage. He's not famous enough to where it would be awkward to read. If the main character of a story was named Abe Lincoln, a dynamic action hero, i would not be able to read it. John Torrington is fine and from the looks of it, he isn't a recurring character.
     
  6. Link the Writer
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    Link the Writer Flipping Out For A Good Story. Contributor

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    I know. It's funny that I keep forgetting that it's not real. XD

    I'm just very literally minded. Guess it helps out a lot when one is a history buff.
     
  7. teacherayala
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    teacherayala Contributing Member

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    Never heard of the guy, but love the last name... I think you're fine.
     
  8. Link the Writer
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    Link the Writer Flipping Out For A Good Story. Contributor

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    As do I.

    I've slept on that idea and figured that it's not a good one. I think I want Commander John Torrington to be alive as one of Helen's love interests.
     
  9. Porcupine
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    Porcupine Contributing Member

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    What everybody else has said. I think the name is great, and you shouldn't worry about this too much. If you were using the name of a current superpower president, it might seem weird, but this is perfectly all right.
     
  10. Link the Writer
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    Link the Writer Flipping Out For A Good Story. Contributor

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    Interestingly enough, I once created a protagonist named Louis Sarkozy who was a French ninja assassin who used a flying hawk as a transport that took him around the world.

    Of course, when Nicolas Sarkozy became the president of France, I had to put my Sarkozy in the backburner. :p

    But yeah, basically if the name isn't some famous, well-known name, then I'm good.
     
  11. KillianRussell
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    KillianRussell Contributing Member

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    I use John Wikes Booth great grandson as the vocalist in a Skinhead power/punk band .Understanding that I suck cuz I refer to humid air as 'syrupy or honeyed" my chances of getting published are as slim as Barney Fife on crack. If the Booth family sues me it will be cause I am awful and lack a miminalist style,do you thing link let it all hang out ..... ya dig ?
     
  12. Link the Writer
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    Link the Writer Flipping Out For A Good Story. Contributor

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    I think I dig. XD

    I think before I ask questions such as this, I should take a gander at my sig and repeat the words over and over again.
     
  13. Chachi Bobinks
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    Chachi Bobinks Senior Member

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    Not posting to add anything at all to this thread at this point.

    Posting only to say Killian? Wtf, why you gotta make me laugh like that? Barney Fife on crack? Oh, spare me! XD
     

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