A New Hero Emerges
Ok, I admit it. My new hero looks remarkably like Gerard Butler.
But that’s because he possesses the qualities I want for my current WIP, TOUCH OF A ROGUE. I like the fact that, while handsome, his face is not perfectly symmetrical. There’s a clearness in his eyes, despite the obvious penchant for trouble glinting in them. And the bit of scruffiness just begs the question of how fabulously well he’d clean up.
I know a good deal about my new hero. He has 3 hard and fast rules about women he takes to his bed. They must be enthusiastic, slightly jaded and most of all, married, so there’s no possibility of entanglement. He may act the rogue in public and seem to be living off his brother’s largess, but behind the scenes, he’s not the wastrel he pretends to be. He’s the driving force that keeps his fraternal twin brother’s earldom afloat. He manages the holdings and directs the fortunes of the Mead estate, but does so through intermediaries in order to keep his own secrets.
He has a gift, you see. One he takes pains to hide. When he touches a metal object, he receives a flash of insight into the previous owner and the history of the object. And warnings of danger. He has a reputation for “acquiring objects of intrinsic value” for those who engage his services.
But I haven’t settled firmly on his name. I know his surname is Preston because he’s cousin to my heroine in TOUCH OF A THIEF (the psychometric gift is an inherited thing!) He’s technically a commoner since his brother inherited the earldom from their uncle instead of their father, so no Lord “Somebody” for my hero. He’s simply Mr. Preston, but his brother’s peearage grants him access and acceptance by the Upper Crust.
His middle name is Aubrey. It suggests a soft underside to me. I like it, but not enough to make it his first name. For that, I want something more solid. More substantial.
I’m torn between James and Richard.
The trouble with James is that is ends in “s”–always problematic when you start adding possessives later on. And I’m not wild about “Jim” for short. “Jamie” is already irretrievably claimed by Gabaldon’s Jamie Fraser. I won’t go there. Readers would hate it.
Richard is a good strong name with plenty of hard consonants, something I appreciate in a hero’s name. “Rick” sounds a bit modern for 1857, though. I greatly fear “Dick” was the diminutive of choice for Richard then. I can’t have a hero called “Dick.”
What do you think? Do you have a different suggestion?