Thursday, March 15, 2012

The Character of Names by Jessica Shirvington

The Character of Names

By Jessica Shirvington

It was never my intention to be gimmicky with the names in Embrace. Sometimes I had a particular reason for giving a character a particular name, other times I stumbled into a reason, and other times, I just like the name. But when dealing with the masses of mythology that surround the subject of angels, it is hard not to turn ones mind to the importance and meaning of some names and I felt it was important to incorporate them at times. So here is a run down of a few of the names in Embrace.
Violet Eden: At first, I simply chose the name Violet because I liked it. But later, when I was researching for the book, I also researched the name, color, history, and mythology – basically everything – to do with the word violet. I quickly realized that many references to the color violet linked back to my story and the concepts that I was introducing and it led to more in depth development of her character. It was a stroke of luck really. One I am very grateful for.
Evelyn (Violet’s mother): I chose her name because Violet is on a path of self-discovery but she is also unique – the first of her kind in many ways. Evelyn, or rather Eve, seemed appropriate – harking back to the tales of Adam and Eve. Plus I liked it and it was an appropriate name to Evelyn’s generation.
Lincoln: I simply LOVE this name. There is something about it that is special – it has a regal tone to it that I am really drawn to. I never considered another option for this character.
Phoenix: He is a conundrum. Reinventing himself has been his method of survival. He has been cast out and shunned and has been left with no choice but to start over again and again. In Embrace, Phoenix attempts to reform, to be his best version of himself. He is a Phoenix in so many ways, burned and reborn and immortal despite the pain.
Steph (Violet’s bff): Because not every name needs to have a hidden meaning. She is the much-needed breath of normality in Violet’s life. Her name is therefore without hidden meaning.
Griffin: Is a Grigori – a warrior made by the high-ranking angels – the Seraphim. He is the leader in the city and a mentor to Violet. The legend of the Griffin depicts them with the body of a lion and head of an eagle. They are considered the king of the creatures, powerful and magical. The Griffin was thought to be a symbol of divine power and a guardian of the divine. This suited him perfectly.

Malachi: Is an exiled angel. I named him Malachi because the Hebrew word for ‘angel’ is ‘malak’ and I wanted to incorporate this somehow.
Onyx: He is very much the villain in Embrace, and an exile of dark. Black Onyx is the blackest of stones, a substance that is part of the earth’s makeup. It seemed fitting that even though he is incredibly evil, his name represented something not man made, but rather, natural.

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