November 4, 2013

NaNo Day Four

Word count: 12,457 as of yesterday at 11:13 PM
Song of the day: "Story of My Life"~One Direction (So addictive!)

Let's talk about symbolism.  Authors can use anything from characters' personalities to word choices to the tiniest plot device to convey symbolism.  A character's name is one of the easiest ways to do this.  My Ophelia is named Violet LaFleur.  I've always been fascinated by the scene where Ophelia goes crazy and hands out flowers to Laertes, Claudius, and Gertrude.  There is so much symbolism in her choices.  For example, she gives Gertrude rue and reserves some for herself, as well.  Rue typically stands for regret/repentance and infidelity.  Obviously, the repentance and infidelity are for Gertrude, while the regret is for Ophelia herself.  But it's little things like a name where you can do so much.  

If you're just writing a basic contemporary, names might not mean too much.  But in fantasies, deep-thinkers, and sci-fi, they can mean a whole lot.  Katniss is named after an important plant.  America Singer (The Selection) was so named because her mother knew she was going to be a fighter (although, her last name is a bit cheesy).  Miri from Princess Academy is named after a flower that has a symbolic meaning.  And that's just skimming the surface of symbolism in characters' names. Can y'all think of any to add?

Shakespeare in general is full of symbolism and parallels.  It's exciting and fun to rediscover these as I work my way through perhaps his greatest play.

1 comment:

  1. My character is Ihana which means 'lovely' in Finnish, it explains that she's beautiful..!:)

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