Category Archives: naming

Cool Doodles and Name Raffle News

So we’re a handful of days away from the end of the name raffle, and for the last couple weeks it’s like every day is my birthday. By which I mean I get a lot of letters with money inside. Today when I open the mail I think I’m going to wear a festive hat and eat some cake too. I’ve been in the mood for cake lately.

Wait, what was I talking about? I’m not used to being up this early in the morning, and I find myself a little confusticated.

Oh, right. The name raffle.

In a nutshell, it’s going really well. Paypal continues to be friendly, donations are generous, the names are cool, and I’m having a lot of fun opening the mail.

Admittedly, some mail is more fun than others.

For example, here’s a set of notecards that just got sent in with someone’s poor-boy entry:
(You can embiggen any of the images by clicking them.)


Thanks so much, Carly. This really made my day.

And you’re right. Trowbridge is a great name…. Even if I don’t draw it in the raffle, it might end up in the book.

That’s actually the case with a lot of the names that have been sent in. I find myself thinking, “Hmmm…. Seth could be a good name for a farmer. Mellisa doesn’t quite work, but Melias would make for a good noble surname in Vintas.”

Personally, I’m really interested to see what names get drawn….

And now some FAQ:

You said the contest ends on November 15th. Did you know that’s a Sunday? I can’t mail you anything on a Sunday…

True, but people can still paypal in their donations on a Sunday. If you want to mail in your entry, you should send it earlier in the week.

Pat! I screwed up and forgot to enter my phone number and suggested name into the Paypal form! What should I do?

You should weep bitter tears. Did I not put instructions on the blog? Clearly worded instructions? In red?

Seriously though. Don’t worry about it. You’re not alone. This happened to a bunch of people.

If you donated online, I have a record of your e-mail address. I’ll write that on the card and use it to keep track of your entry. Then, if you win, I’ll contact you and get the other information I need.

How much have we raised so far?

Checks and donations are still coming in every day, so I don’t have a final tally yet. But right now I think we’re at a little more than 16,000 dollars. Which is awesome.

That means if you buy one ticket you’ve got (roughly) a 1 in 800 chance of winning. If you buy six tickets for 50 bucks, you’ve got about a 1 in 260 chance of winning.

I’m hoping we can have a strong finish. So how about this? To encourage people to donate and spread the word during the final days of the fundraiser, I’ll draw a third name if we hit 20,000. That means the odds will actually get better for everyone if more people donate.

Is this the only Heifer fundraiser you’re doing this year?

Oh no. Not at all. This is just a warm-up for the people who are specifically interested in my book.

As I’ve mentioned before here on the blog, we’ll be doing something very similar to last year’s fundraiser. Except this year we’re going to have even more prizes, and some cool auctions too. Stay tuned for details.


I live far away, and I know my letter won’t make it to you in time. Can I just e-mail you the name for my poor-boy entry?

I’ve had a few of these e-mails from foreign countries or from people in the army.

While I sympathize, I really don’t want to change the rules that I laid down at the beginning of the contest. Changing the rules partway through is kinda unfair to all the people who would have liked to e-mail in their free entries, but went online and bought a ticket instead.

Maybe the next time we do this I’ll have an online option, but for now, I think the only fair thing is to stick by the original rules.

Once the drawing is over, do we get to know what names you’ve picked?

I’m going to leave that up to the winners. If they’re cool with me mentioning it on the blog, then I might. Otherwise, I’ll respect their privacy.

That’s all for now, folks.

pat

Also posted in fan coolness, Heifer International | By Pat45 Responses

“And beside her came Andan…”

Back back in March, I got the following E-mail:

Dear Pat

I’m having my first baby boy with my wife (due date April 13). The only boy name I have found that we both like is “Andan”, found on page 188 of The Name Of The Wind.

I just really wanted to know if you remember where or how you came up with that name, and what you had in mind using it. I mean, the story reads that his name meant anger, but if you had any more information it would without a doubt be the single kindest thing anyone has done for me for a long time (in other words much appreciation:)

Although I have searched endlessly, I just can’t seem to find any good information on the name… which I really like for my baby… but am apprehensive using it as I really don”t know where it came from.

Anyway, if you got to read this I thank you so much for your valuable time. Here’s to Kvothe and his story… let more people find his tale and experience wonder. Seriously, though — Thank You.

-Jordan & Melissa

I was flattered, of course. And I dropped them the following note in return:

Jordan,

I wish I could help you more, but it’s hard for me to remember with that particular name.

You see, sometimes I make up a name and say it means something. And other times I take an old word and twist it a little and turn it into a name. And sometimes I take an old name and use it…

Unfortunately, that part of the book was written so long ago that I can’t rightly remember which it was. But I expect that I might have made the name up entirely….

Best of luck with the new baby, and if you do decide to name him Andan, drop me a picture of him. That’ll be a first for me, someone named out of the book…

Fondly,

pat

And that was that. I knew it wasn’t really a satisfying answer, but it was the only one I had. I didn’t hear anything back from them, which isn’t particularly odd. And I assumed that using the name had pretty much been a passing fancy on their part.

Then, just a couple days ago, I got the following message:

(Slightly edited for privacy’s sake)

Pat,

I emailed you awhile back about the name Andan in your book. You were gracious enough to provide with a prompt response, and I feel horrible that it’s taken so long to get back to you…. but we did have a BOY!

His name is Andan. I’m so glad that you wrote that name in your book one time b/c we simply love it for our boy, and it is just perfect.

Anyway, I wanted to get a few pictures of our son Andan to you as I said I would… and I’m a man of my word, pretty much, mostly, yeah… we’ll go with man of my word.

-Jordan

So, with no further ado, I would like to introduce everyone to Andan.

You have to admit, this is one seriously cute baby. He looks like one of the podlings from the Dark Crystal. I mean that in the best possible way.


At this point I’m tempted to say something witty, or pithy, or glib. But honestly, I can’t think of a thing. All I can do is think about how very strange my life has become in the last couple years.

My best to you, little Andan. Your face doesn’t look like a mask with burning eyes at all. It’s my sincerest wish that you someday meet a sweet girl named Ordal and form a good relationship built on the common experience of having some seriously cool geeky parents.

Jealous of little Andan? Wish your name was in one of my books? Well wish no longer…

You! That’s right, YOU have a chance to donate to a great charity AND get your name in my next book. Wow. I know. It’s a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity. But remember, the raffle only lasts until November 15th.

Details, as always, are over here.

Later space cowboys,

pat

Also posted in Achievement Unlocked!, cool things, fan coolness, fanmail | By Pat68 Responses

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.

Me:

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,

pat

Also posted in Heifer International | By Pat65 Responses
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