Saturday, February 20, 2016

Behind the Names of the Sunken Realm

This blog post is about a book (within a book series) by Serena Chase. I love all the books in her series, but this post will be focusing on the Sunken Realm. This is a giveaway to enter at the bottom of this post.

Behind the Names: the Eyes of E’veria series
by Serena Chase

Across genres, there are often interesting stories about how authors choose the names for the characters in their books, but in speculative fiction (fantasy, sci fi, dystopian, steam punk, etc.) those behind-the-scenes naming stories extend to places, objects, processes, abilities, and terminology—sometimes entire languages are created. In this series of posts, which will be spread over time, as well as several blogs, my Facebook page, my newsletter—and eventually videos in which I will share pronunciations, as well—I will attempt to unveil the stories behind the names populating the epic fantasy novels The Ryn, The Remedy, The Seahorse Legacy, and The Sunken Realm, a few at a time.

For this post, I am focusing on names from Eyes of E’veria, book 4: The Sunken Realm

Eachan Isle: the name Eachan means “little horse.” It is the home of the Seahorse Pirates. ‘Nuf said.

Cazien: In one of the very early versions of The Ryn, Cazien was a villain—a “bad” pirate. I made his name from the real name “Caz,” which I found in my favorite of all name-research books, The First Name Reverse Dictionary by Yvonne Navarro. According to that book, “Caz” means “vain”—which is still a little bit perfect, even though he became one of the good guys over the course of rewriting that first draft.

Bowen: A friend and former co-worker has given her little boys the most charming names (and the boys are super adorable, too!) I asked Nikki if I could borrow one of her sons’ names for a sweet little boy in The Seahorse Legacy, and little Bowen made it into the next book, as well.

Pollis and Kasta are names taken from classical mythology, but I made mythological male characters Castor and Pollux female for my purposes.

Captain Ledo and Lady Signe were named along the same vein. Since I was gender-bending the Castor and Pollux thing anyway, I thought I’d go ahead and gender-bend the whole myth. If you don’t know the story, you can easily Google it, but when you do, you should note that Ledo is my masculinization of “Leda” from the myth and that the name Signe means “swan”—which delighted me. You see, my great-grandmother’s name was Signe! It seemed perfect to share my (great) grandmother’s name with Cazien’s grandma—and it was that connection inspired the name Meirma for “grandmother” in Seyharzien, the language of Eachan Isle. The Swedish word for maternal grandmother is “mormor.” Add in a Swedish accent to that—and a little creative license—and Meirma isn’t too far a stretch.

...and speaking of Seyharzien... in your best pirate accent, say “Seyharz”—Did it sound like “seahorse” to you? *winks* It does to me!

Princess Zohara: I know, I know, it sounds very Branjolina-daughter. But beyond that, I think it sounds very royal, in an exotic sort of way.

Prenzio: Cazien’s father was originally named Prinz—since he served as the “Prince John” type character to Cazien’s young-Robin-Hood-on-the-seas persona in an as-of-yet-unpublished (and unfinished!) prequel novel that takes place when Cazien is fifteen. An early editor said the name made her think too much of the 80s singer Prince (aka: The Artist Formerly Known as Prince), and although the ruffled shirts Prenzio (and Roeg!) prefer may be a little reminiscent of the “Purple Rain” video, I didn’t really want to make that comparison in my books. I changed it. As it turns out, I like the name Prenzio much better. It suits him, I think.

Destria: A destrier is a war horse, this is my feminization of this name, which seems appropriate for a Seahorse Pirate, don’t you think? I liked this name for this character and she’s been in my head for years and years. (And she will likely be in my head for many, many more!)

Briggan Roo: Clear back in the early drafts of The Ryn, there existed a scene (which was deleted years and years ago) in which Kinley taught Rose a difficult dance that went along with a song called “The Ballad of Briggan Roo.” Together, the melody and the dance told the tale of an ancient sea serpent. Ack, but those Veetrish, am I right? *winks* But... Briggan Roo was not entirely lost with that scene, only put off a few more books—until he could play a dramatic role!

What names and words of E’veria are you curious about? Tell me in the comments, and make sure to watch my Facebook page and follow me on Twitter for news of when and where the next “Names of E’veria” post will appear!
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SERENA CHASE lives in Iowa with her husband Dave, teen daughters Delaney and Ellerie, and a big white dog named Albus (yes, he was named after that Albus.) A frequent contributor to USA Today's Happy Ever After blog, Serena is an avid reader of young adult fiction and inspirational romance and has become a respected influencer within those communities. When not engaged in her varied roles within the publishing industry, Serena can be found watching action movies and dreaming about someday living in a cottage by the sea. Connect with Serena Chase on Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest, and Twitter (@Serena_Chase) and visit to subscribe to her newsletter and gain access to exclusive, subscriber-only content

Wednesday, February 10, 2016

Context is Crucial

I've been working on memorizing Scripture over the past two years. Thanks to Memverse (an online Bible memorization system), I've been able to memorize over 400 verses in that year and I have the entire book of James memorized.

As a result of memorizing Bible verses, I've begun to notice that a lot of the facebook pictures that have Bible verses don't quote the entire verse. This scares me because although it may not be be the poster's intention, this can cause confusion and misunderstandings of God and His Word.

Liz's Advice for Clearly Passing on Scripture:
1. Include the reference to your verse. That way others can find exactly what you were referencing.

2. Sometimes people quote a verse (or part of one) from the New Testament, that is quoting the Old Testament. If this is the case, reference the exact passage you're quoting, but also say that it's quoting from another passage.

3. Include the entire verse. In published Christian books, I've read "quotes" of Hebrews 13:5 "God has said, "Never will I leave you; never will I forsake you"." This is in Hebrews 13:5, but A) it is quoting Deuteronomy 31:6, and B) it's leaving out the first half of the verse. The entire verse reads "Keep your lives free from the love of money and be content with what you have. For God has said, "never will I leave you; never will I forsake you." I understand that sometimes only a part of a verse speaks the message you want to say. If this is the case, include an "A" or "B" after the reference to indicate that you're only quoting part of the verse.

4. Remember that the chapters & verses were added centuries after the Bible was canonized. When you are looking at a verse, the surrounding verses, paragraph, chapter, and the rest of the book are crucial.

5. Context is crucial. If you only start posting half (or less) of a verse, you may be twisting Scripture into what you want it to say. There's a brilliant comic that illustrates how a verse taken out of context can be disastrous.