Saturday, August 8, 2009

What's In a Name?

If I had been smart, my main character's family name would have been Johnson, or Hall, or Miller...any name that doesn't end with an "s". There is a completely different set of punctuation rules for names that end with that letter! And I have been diligently trying to utilize them correctly, regardless of how odd it looks to me on paper.

So here's our language lesson for the day kiddies:

Avalin Summers (singular proper noun)
the Summerses (plural proper noun)
Avalin Summers's parents (singular possessive noun)
the Summerses' disappearance (plural possessive noun)

I have always prided myself on using grammar and punctuation correctly...I know some of you are nodding and laughing at the amount of understatement used here. For those of you less familiar, I have been called the "Grammar Police". But I must humbly admit that I have learned something new and that I'm thankful it was discovered and hopefully all the corrections made before the book hits the stores!

My editor, being the wonderfully helpful person that she is, offered the suggestion to just change the name. After all, the book hasn't been published yet. But for me that would be the equivalent of when Prince changed his name to that symbol thing, and was referred to as "the artist formerly known as Prince" for several years! That was just idiotic! Everyone knew he was Prince, it was already set in their minds. Thankfully someone knocked him back to his senses, and its not an issue any more.

The family's name is Summers. There is no other option now. I just thank God for computers. Making the appropriate punctuation and spelling corrections took a whole lot less time than it would have fifty years ago!

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