Names Are Important Things…

So. A while back I mentioned I was going to be giving people the opportunity to get their name into book two.

Since then I’ve been putting a lot of thought into how I was going to accomplish this.

I considered an auction. I’ve seen that done a couple different ways by a couple different authors. It would be fairly simple, and it would be a good way to raise money for the upcoming Heifer fundraiser…. (Which is going to be even more awesome this year, by the way.)

However, something about the thought of an auction rubbed me the wrong way. It would be relatively easy to handle, and I’m all about raising money for Heifer. But still, it seemed odd for me to set up a system where the person with the most money automatically wins. That irks my egalitarian nature.

Plus, I had WAY too many imagined conversations along these lines:

Me: [on the phone] Congratulations! You won the auction!

Winner: Yay! I want to put my D&D character’s name into the book!

Me: What’s his name?

Winner: Studd Beefcake.


Winner: He’s awesome. He’s a dual class fighter/ranger. That means so long as he’s only wearing leather armor…

Me: I don’t think the name Studd Beefcake will fit smoothly into the world I’ve created.

Winner: How about my other character? Grignir Theqjirn’ateth.

Me: I beg your pardon? I think there was some static on the line…

Winner: Grignir Theqjirn’ateth. He’s a dwarven monk.

Me: Do you…

Winner: Stunning Fist!

Me: Yes. Stunning Fist. Do you have any ideas for names that aren’t your D&D characters?

Winner: Well… We could use my little boy’s name…

Me: That sounds great. What is it?

Winner: Drizzt.

Me: I think there are copyright issues involved…

Winner: Drizzt Do’Urden RULES! Wooo!

Me: I don’t think we can use Drizzt, either.

Winner: [Angrily] Why do you keep shooting down my awesome ideas? I paid, like, 4,000 dollars for this!

That’s how all these conversations end in my mind. With the auction winner feeling that because they’ve shelled out a bunch of money, they have the right to stick whatever they want in my book.

But that’s just not going to be the case. What will happen is you’ll win a chance to propose a name for book two. If the name you’re proposing sounds great to me, then huzzah. If not, the two of us will talk it over.

For example, maybe you want to get your girlfriend’s name into the book because you’re hoping it will get you that threeway you’ve always wanted. But her name is “Veronica” and that doesn’t quite feel right for my world.

So we start talking it over. Maybe we can use her middle name instead. Maybe we use her nickname and I tweak the character’s description a little bit so that it more closely resembles her. (Though I’ll probably do this a little bit anyway.)

Maybe I put a little twist on the name. “Veronia” would be fine for the book.

Or maybe you decide you’d rather use your own name after all. And it turns out I’m fine with that because your name is Ferrel and that’s exactly the sort of name that would fit on a Vintish Courtier, and I happen to be tweaking that section right now…

What I’m getting at here is that we’ll negotiate until we’re both happy with the addition to the book.

Anyway, the point is that I’ll be running this like a lottery. That way we can raise money for Heifer, AND everyone has a chance to win.

In fact, everyone will have *several* chances to win.

In fact, even people that can’t afford to buy their way in will have a chance to win.

Interested? Of course you are.

Tune in on Monday for the details.

Tantalizingly Yours,


This entry was posted in Heifer International, namingBy Pat65 Responses


  1. Pat
    Posted October 11, 2009 at 5:15 AM | Permalink


  2. Pat
    Posted October 11, 2009 at 5:16 AM | Permalink

    See? It looks just as dumb when I do it…

  3. Brandy
    Posted October 11, 2009 at 5:20 AM | Permalink

    Damn! Here I was looking forward to looking dumb…

    but I will wait, with bated breath even! Until Monday.

    How does bated breath smell? Not like baited breath, I hope!

  4. George
    Posted October 11, 2009 at 5:21 AM | Permalink


  5. K. L. Howard
    Posted October 11, 2009 at 5:21 AM | Permalink

    Sweet. Lottery! And I love how you ended it “tantalizing yours”. Awesome.
    And because I’m that dumb (and never first):
    Official First!!

  6. K. L. Howard
    Posted October 11, 2009 at 5:21 AM | Permalink


  7. George
    Posted October 11, 2009 at 5:22 AM | Permalink

    Darn, looks like I was third. If you count Pat’s two posts separately, I’m fourth. Oh well, I am still very excited!

  8. AJ
    Posted October 11, 2009 at 5:30 AM | Permalink

    Gruntin Thews? Oyld Ahnkls?

    Frankly, I don’t know why you’re even bothering to have a contest… ;)

  9. An Albino Druid
    Posted October 11, 2009 at 5:31 AM | Permalink

    No! I was so close!
    Oh well, I cannot wait for the details, Pat!

    I will be thinking of the names I could propose…

  10. MOQS
    Posted October 11, 2009 at 5:39 AM | Permalink

    Moalied Badaokko….there you go…everyone else im sorry…hes picking my name

  11. Vinny K
    Posted October 11, 2009 at 5:48 AM | Permalink

    Pat, you sure do know how to adequately pique ones curiosity. I greatly look forward to what you have in store for those of us (that is to say, all of us) that wish to have the opportunity of a life-time and pick the name that shall be in your next book. Well, that is all, until Monday. May fortune smile upon you.


  12. Rex
    Posted October 11, 2009 at 6:21 AM | Permalink

    I love your pragmatic and fair approach to this, when you first mentioned the whole auction idea i was all exited…

    until i remembered that I’m poor.

    this whole post really show cases why it is that i name you as my favorite writer. not only do i love your writing, i like the way you think.

    Thanks for this opportunity.

  13. Charles
    Posted October 11, 2009 at 6:30 AM | Permalink

    So my dreams of Pious Priest the Right Honorable Joe Kickass go down in flames?

    You’ve changed man. You’ve changed.

  14. Stefan
    Posted October 11, 2009 at 6:33 AM | Permalink

    Robyn with a Y and Stignei with a Stignei

  15. Devin
    Posted October 11, 2009 at 6:39 AM | Permalink

    Well, Now I feel obligated to enter, because I’m already in the book. (My name’s Devin)

  16. Anonymous
    Posted October 11, 2009 at 6:46 AM | Permalink

    How about Amalthea, from peter Beagle’s The Last Unicorn? An homage, if you will. Plus it’s a beautiful name. I am really looking forward to book two, Pat.

  17. geoff foden
    Posted October 11, 2009 at 9:27 AM | Permalink

    How about gemmell (in honour of the author david gemmell who dies in 2006).

    Our first child is due in december, we like the name Kian. that would sound great I think in the book…

  18. Zack Truel
    Posted October 11, 2009 at 9:30 AM | Permalink

    Awesome! I can’t wait to hear what we have to do. I think it would be awesome to be able to come up with a name for a character in book 2. I would brag to all of my friends about it if I won! :)

  19. Sarah
    Posted October 11, 2009 at 9:47 AM | Permalink

    Awesome! Now I’m even more excited for tomorrow! Can’t wait to hear what we have to do to join. I hope overseas readers can join, too ;)

  20. Anonymous
    Posted October 11, 2009 at 10:29 AM | Permalink


    So does that mean that “Gaspasser” would have no chance?

  21. Captain Joe
    Posted October 11, 2009 at 10:35 AM | Permalink

    Hmm, well, Joe is not a very fanciful name. It needs a touch of fantasy about it… let’s see… Joepleus!


    Pat, my good man, be prepared for an all out bidding war!

  22. Anonymous
    Posted October 11, 2009 at 2:03 PM | Permalink

    I really hope I can join too:)
    And Im totally understanding there isnt a release date yet. Good work needs time-> Quality before Quantity:)


  23. Alice O. Beltran
    Posted October 11, 2009 at 2:44 PM | Permalink

    Yay! I’m so excited!

  24. RedObserver
    Posted October 11, 2009 at 3:14 PM | Permalink

    Egalitarian nature, Yay!

    I think that this is fair, maybe not too much for the people that contribute to Heifer but to the book. Can’t have anything ruining the feel of the book :) now can we?

    Anyway, there’s no need for me to really want this……you already have one of Kvothe’s name as “Reshi”…..that’s more than my wildest name-dreams and the spelling is the same too.

    “Studd Beefcake”


  25. Ruthie
    Posted October 11, 2009 at 3:24 PM | Permalink


    There’s some. Hope it gives a bit of inspiration :)

  26. Anonymous
    Posted October 11, 2009 at 4:10 PM | Permalink


  27. Warbeard
    Posted October 11, 2009 at 5:25 PM | Permalink

    I love you Pat.

  28. Miche
    Posted October 11, 2009 at 6:25 PM | Permalink

    Off topic but you’ve got me curious Patrick. What do you think of Dragonlance and the Forgotten Realms?

    The first series I ever read was Chronicles in grade 5. Then I continued to read both of them until I was 15 or 16. Haven’t read a single thing in them in the last 15 years though…just grew out of it and moved on I guess. But I’ll always look back fondly on Tanis and Kelemvor and the rest.

  29. Stuart
    Posted October 11, 2009 at 7:38 PM | Permalink

    This is very unfair. I’m a very wealthy man. I demand the right to spend copious amount of cash to secure my choice of names. Harumph!

  30. ricardo munoz
    Posted October 11, 2009 at 7:50 PM | Permalink

    how Ricardo Xavier Munoz in honor of me

  31. ricardo
    Posted October 11, 2009 at 7:54 PM | Permalink

    meant how about Ricardo Xavier Munoz in honor of me

  32. Anonymous
    Posted October 11, 2009 at 8:36 PM | Permalink

    As long as people are proposing ideas….


  33. Rhys R.
    Posted October 12, 2009 at 12:02 AM | Permalink

    Winner: Well… We could use my little boy’s name…

    Me: That sounds great. What is it?

    Winner: Drizzt.

    If ever you tire of writing the greatest books known to man (and likely martians) please take up comedy…I nearly had an aneurysm laughing at this. Oh and since this is my first time posting…you are my all time favorite author, hands down.

  34. Moteth
    Posted October 12, 2009 at 12:40 AM | Permalink

    Tantalizingly yours…


  35. Vae
    Posted October 12, 2009 at 1:01 AM | Permalink

    OH. MY. GOD. ahem, now that that’s out of the way, let’s just say I am excited. Now hopefully I’ll be lucky too…

  36. Roswitha
    Posted October 12, 2009 at 2:54 AM | Permalink

    Love the egalitarian plan! No wonder we all think you are such a stand-up kind of guy.

    Yay, Pat! And Yay, Heifer International! And Yay for lotteries and book two and Oot and Sarah and just bygolly isn’t the world just great sometimes?

    Seriously, you rock.

  37. sully
    Posted October 12, 2009 at 5:02 AM | Permalink

    I’m saddened by this. Seeing as you are still having contests for the 2nd book, means it is still not ready to be released. I Don’t want to be a “fanboy” But the anticipation is driving me bats. I would love to know a release date. I’ve read book one 3 times, in anticipation for the 2nd. By now i thought we would be talking about the 3rd. book.

  38. Atreus
    Posted October 12, 2009 at 5:19 AM | Permalink

    I was pleasantly surprised reading through The Name of the Wind the first time to find a character with the same name as my own. It came from left field when I realized a certain Blacksmith’s apprentice who was handy with a steel bar shared a name with me – so I got a preemptive treat! So no need for me to try to get a name in the second one.

    I really appreciate the fact that you do have such an interaction with your fan base, though, and are willing to include them in your book in something as important as names. Your originality with names and consistent use of unique languages and cultures throughout is one of the things that really drew me to your book, so don’t get too carried away!

    So, great job with the first book, best of luck on the second book, and I give you my respect for both being close to your fanbase and doing a noble humanitarian endeavor.

    Keep it up – looking forward to seeing how things turn out!

  39. Anonymous
    Posted October 12, 2009 at 5:54 AM | Permalink

    Last! :)

  40. Zack Truel
    Posted October 12, 2009 at 6:39 AM | Permalink

    *whistles idly and then perks up* Hey, its Monday! No new blog post? I want to know what I have to do! ;)

  41. Jackson S
    Posted October 12, 2009 at 9:38 AM | Permalink

    The thought of having my name in the book, even if it is only a semblance of my name is make my head spin.

    By the way I have read your book 5 times now, and I see it from a different perspective each time. One of the riddles of my life is that your book is the only one I can continuously read.

  42. Memphis
    Posted October 12, 2009 at 10:30 AM | Permalink

    I stand firmly behind:

    Olgruin Wiltvlyt
    Lordé de Mourion
    Borys Linha
    Ordoca Mirehinin
    Larsis Carthenin

    Or is that to international?

    Curious greetings

  43. Jamie
    Posted October 12, 2009 at 1:04 PM | Permalink

    in the middle of The Name of the Wind now and im loving it. Cool idea for the fan interaction too.

  44. Randy
    Posted October 12, 2009 at 2:52 PM | Permalink

    Wait a minute, I thought the draft was complete and submitted for the new Day 2 book already? Recall the May 11, 2009 blog post about the manuscript? I’m confused….

  45. Chundar
    Posted October 12, 2009 at 7:15 PM | Permalink

    So…you like to party?…’cause I could party.

    Whoooohoooooooo! Let’s send some live stock around the world again! What a most excellent charity!

    Now, down to business. I’ve got this idea, see. It involves me getting a character name into your forthcoming novel. I’ll allow you to feature Chundar Bwarda (a.k.a. the Barbarian of Seville) in book 2, and in return, I’ll send some livestock around the world to the downtrodden and destitute, who dearly need our help.

    Wha’dja think?

  46. Heather
    Posted October 12, 2009 at 7:16 PM | Permalink

    Iv’e Just read your blog and your idea sounds awesome!
    Can’t wait for details.

  47. Mark S.
    Posted October 12, 2009 at 10:34 PM | Permalink

    I really don’t understand the confusion over why we don’t have a release date yet. He submitted the draft of book 2 in May. The EDITOR, who, you know, edits, has to go through the whole thing with an eye for changes (condense this, expand that, get rid of this altogether, that doesn’t make sense), and it goes back to the writer for rewrites.

    It’s a process people. Just because he turned in his draft in May doesn’t mean you get the book in the store by October. While I suspect this time around the process will be shorter than it was for the first book, the turnaround time on accepted manuscripts is always months and frequently years. A friend of mine just sold his first book a few weeks ago and it’s due to be released in spring 2011. I’m sure Pat’s book will be turned around much more quickly than that, but you’ve really been kidding yourselves if you thought the draft submitted in May would produce a book for you to purchase by mid-October. My guess is we’re looking at next spring. If it’s any earlier than that, then be happy!

    But that’s a complete and total guess.

  48. Anonymous
    Posted October 13, 2009 at 1:41 AM | Permalink

    Eean (ian)

  49. Slappy Jones
    Posted October 13, 2009 at 6:03 AM | Permalink

    Very cool and a lot awesome.

    My husband has a D&D dwarf named Brock Digsby, so I could totally see that being a problem. (He’s a one-armed porn star.)

    Anyway, can’t wait to donate the little money I have for a good cause.

  50. Anonymous
    Posted October 13, 2009 at 10:02 AM | Permalink

    Oot is looking very spiffy in his onesie. :0)

    And i missed the last post and until i went back and read it thought you were auctioning off the naming rights to your son. :-D I was fairly sure it wasn’t reallyt he case but i had to check.

    WV: weade- what elmer fudd does to books.

  51. Illyria
    Posted October 13, 2009 at 1:16 PM | Permalink

    LOL yeah I had to go back and read what was going on because I thought we were naming your son as well! LOL. Then I thought… what is better than Oot? Not much. My pick is Illyria of course.

  52. Kathleen
    Posted October 13, 2009 at 4:59 PM | Permalink

    Ooooh more motivation to find employment…other than rent/food/clothing!

  53. Vulpes Fulva
    Posted October 13, 2009 at 7:26 PM | Permalink

    You are tantalizingly mine, aren’t you.

    I have a name for you.

    Monday will be a good day.

  54. Paradox
    Posted October 14, 2009 at 3:06 AM | Permalink

    My name still takes the cake… Birth name: Evangelius Robertum Wood

    My Parents smoked ALOT of the good shit……

  55. Nathan
    Posted October 14, 2009 at 5:00 AM | Permalink


    Strangely enough, you already put my name (Nathan) in your first book. So, thanks! ;)

    I just finished The Name of the Wind, though I wish I hadn’t. I want more! I hunger for more!

    I enjoyed this book so much that I’m now experiencing withdrawls and have started biting my nails again. When will you be releasing book two!?

    It is my belief that your name will one day be mentioned alongside greats such as Lewis, Tolkien, R.R., Farland, Jordan, and that Harry Potter chick.

    Keep up the good work!

    ~ Nathan

  56. Anonymous
    Posted October 15, 2009 at 2:39 AM | Permalink

    If you are looking for names, you can always use website generators that generate mythical names. Ex: Say you type in “elvish names on and you choose on of the websites that popup. There are also websites that have lists of wierd and unusual names. Course you can mix it up too.

    Now to put in my two scents:
    If you had any ideas what so ever, you should at least look up ancient names on the internet or in a library. “Ancient Names” wont be enough in a library. “Ancient Civilizations of Europe,” or something like that of the sort, might be a bit useful.

    However if you want my oppinion, I like these names:
    Kaveak (male)
    Cebren (male)

    Of course everyone wants there name in a book. Thats why I havent given mine

    Choose wisely.

  57. MOQS
    Posted October 15, 2009 at 5:08 AM | Permalink

    I must say im kinda upset…i was poor about a year ago, i mean dead broke, but iv been working 15 hour days for a year now and havent had one good thing to spend my money on untillnow…..AND NOW I CANT TAKE ADVANTAGE OF HAVING MONEY!!!!! CURSE YOU GOOD MAN PAT…

  58. Dan Heffron
    Posted October 16, 2009 at 10:09 PM | Permalink

    I am just stunned that my name was in the first book. When I read ‘You didn’t do something stupid like go to the Heffron, did you?” (I forget the exact quote, but I definitely got the name right)…I had to read it three times to figure out if I had fallen asleep and was dreaming while I was reading. That was one of the coolest things I’d ever read!

  59. Nicole
    Posted October 18, 2009 at 4:19 PM | Permalink

    how about:
    Nenia (female)
    Nemian (male)

    Just the first thought that came to my head.

  60. sean
    Posted October 19, 2009 at 1:37 AM | Permalink

    My son Danny died in June. He loved your books, especially the ones you sent to City of Hope. I think you should use the name Vladimir or Bazaliel in his honor, since he liked both of those family names. When are you coming to San Diego so we can meet you? D wanted so much to thank you in person. We’ll just have to do it for him!We miss him every day. Thanks for being a great guy! Carol

  61. Anonymous
    Posted October 19, 2009 at 11:25 AM | Permalink

    just use a name from japanese anime or something..some of them sounds cool

    Index Librorum Prohibitorum
    Nora Arlent
    Sanya T.Litvark

  62. Kinney
    Posted October 23, 2009 at 4:13 PM | Permalink

    So what happens if you are stupid and in your haste to give money to a good cause you forget to fill out your paypal donation with the necessary raffle information? Is there any way to connect the two? I just did this and would really like to be entered in the raffle. Any help would be amazingly appreciated.

  63. shaun
    Posted October 26, 2009 at 3:54 AM | Permalink

    hey pat just loved your book read it a while back can’t wait for the next one. i have a few ideas knocking around for books myself,they just seem to pop into my head when i’m not expecting it is this the same for you before you started to write? would love to write something if it ends up being half as good as yours i’d be a happy guy! thanx

  64. Mike
    Posted October 29, 2009 at 1:18 PM | Permalink

    Awesome first book Pat, loved every second of it and I eagerly await the second with bated breath.

    Just thought id throw a couple of names in too mix it up a bit. My girlfriend’s name is Ánna but prononced Auna (she is Irish) and her cousin is Áunia, well prononced that and I have no idea how its spelt. These funny ol Irish spellings and all. Well I really hope your well Pat, and you and your family take care.

    Mike & Ánna – Devon, England.

  65. Anonymous
    Posted November 7, 2009 at 8:18 AM | Permalink

    Hi Pat!
    Just wanted to say Thank you for giving us a great book to read! I’ve been a bookseller for 15 years and I know that contrary to public belief, it takes a lot of time to write an awesome book AND get it published. Book 2 will be done when its done! And in the meantime I can read The Name of the Wind again and again!:)

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