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  1. SolZephyr

    SolZephyr Member Supporter

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    Narrator and names

    Discussion in 'Character Development' started by SolZephyr, Apr 23, 2019.

    Hi all,

    I'm having a weird issue that I've been flip flopping around on, and that's how the narrator refers to certain characters. My MC refers to two characters as Ev and Gare, but everyone else refers to them as Evie (short for Eveline) and Garrison, respectively.

    For the longest time I had the narrator use the names that other characters use for them, as I'm not doing third-person close, but now I'm thinking maybe I should go with the shortened names to get in a little bit closer. I'm going to end up rewriting half the story anyway, so it won't even be that tedious to make the change. Honestly I could go either way though, so I just wanted to see what other people thought about it.

    So, what do you guys think? Should my narrator follow my MC's lead or refer to them how most other characters do?
     
  2. jannert

    jannert Retired Mod Supporter Contributor

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    It will depend on how it works when it's written. But Ev and Gare are unusual names, as are Eveline and Garrison. They will stand out. As long as you make a big deal about the nicknames and why certain people use them and certain people don't, I think you'll be fine.

    It's normal for people who are close to employ nicknames. Just as long as your reader knows that Ev and Eveline are the same person, ditto Gare and Garrison, you'll have no bother. But I would make a big deal about it. Make the narrator or somebody else mention the fact that these are nicknames, if you can.
     
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  3. ChickenFreak

    ChickenFreak Contributor Contributor

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    You're not third person close, but are you third person limited from his POV? Or are you using omniscient?

    If limited from his POV then, yes, I'd use his nicknames. If omniscient...that feels like a style decision. You could go a bit formal, Eveline and Garrison. You could use the nickname used by whoever's head you're nearest in the moment--a huge amount of work there, IMO. You could go with the majority nickname.
     
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  4. SolZephyr

    SolZephyr Member Supporter

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    I'm third person limited, though I switch POV to the antagonist in two of the chapters. I wouldn't go with Eveline because there's only one character who refers to her as that. edit: well, technically there are others but they don't play a major role

    Yeah, writing from omniscient and switching names would be a headache I wouldn't want to deal with :p.
     
  5. ChickenFreak

    ChickenFreak Contributor Contributor

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    In that case, I would go with whatever nickname the POV character for the chapter would use. If you had a whole lot of different POV characters...I’d still do that myself, but I would be more hesitant about recommending it.

    It might be interesting to look at when George Martin calls Daenerys, Daenerys, and when he calls her Dany. Except, I find the result somewhat unsatisfactory.
     
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