Do you have a nickname?
What does it say about you? What does it mean to you? Think about who gave you the nickname and how it made you feel, or what it says about your personality. What does it say about the relationship you have with the person who gave you the name?
Typically, we give nicknames to people we like. It’s a way to make that person feel special. I have one friend who calls me Mick. That’s not my name, but one that I cherish because it comes from someone who cares about me. My mom calls me Chell. No one else calls me that. That nickname is more than just a name. It’s about my relationship with my mother and only my mother.
Do you use nicknames in your fiction? If not, you should consider using this technique. Have your male character give his love interest an endearing nickname and it might create an “awww” moment with your readers. It’s possible the name will make your character more likeable too.
Shortly after I started dating my husband, he nicknamed me the RANDOM SUBJECT GENERATOR. He said it was difficult to follow my conversations because I kept switching topics. It’s kind of embarrassing, but true. I switch subjects without notice and my mind goes a mile a minute. It’s like I want to hurry and say what I need to say before I forget the thought.
It’s who I am. (Thus RANDOM Writing Rants.) But anyone who knows me knows that I’m a little ADD with my topics and so the nickname says something about my personality too. It’s also a cute thing between my husband and me.
In my Young Adult novel, WILLOW, Trae Truman’s friends call him TURBO. His grandfather had given him the nickname when Trae was little because of his hyper-fast golf shots. His grandfather said Trae’s shots were turbo-charged and the TURBO part stuck, so by the time Trae gets to high school and makes the golf team, his peers call him TURBO. That name means a lot about his personality too, because he’s the type of guy who doesn’t always think through his decisions. He’s a little impulsive.
Think of movies. What are some of the nicknames in your favorite flicks. Do they work? Why or why not?
What are some ways you can add nicknames to your novel?