So, after reading Debra's comment yesterday about the name "Grace" being too common, I went into a bit of panic mode since that is the name of my heroine in my work in progress.
I loved the name for this particular character, but if you will remember I talked about how I was torn between the names Grace and Claire, so I spent this morning taking Grace out and putting in Claire. I also changed the name of my hero because he had a "C" name as well and if the heroine was Claire, it didn't really fit with the hero's name anymore.
But then, I had to change a bad guy's name because "Roy" just didn't seem to go with the vision of him I had in my mind after seeing him interacting with Claire and not Grace.
You know what was funny? After I'd changed everybody's name, it was like I was writing a whole new book. The hero seemed a little darker, the heroine a little sassier, the bad guy a little more sympathetic. It was amazing!
Unfortunately, with all the first name changes, I also had to do some last name changes as well. Last names are always hard for me. I have tried the phone book thing, the neighborhood list thing, genealogy sources, you name it. I dread choosing last names. But last night, I found this website who offers a free list of great last names. (Click here if you want to see it.) I think I will love this website for the rest of my writing career.
So, now I have new first names, great last names, and I'm ready to finish this baby up.
How do you choose names for your characters?