Posts Tagged ‘vladimir nabokov’

One of the reasons I like love Vladimir Nabokov’s works so much is the attention he gives to “the details,” such as the names of characters. Now while I’m not making any comparisons between 1: The Intern (first book in the SINS07 series) and Lolita, I did spend some time tweaking the names of characters and places (as I always do with all of my writing material — if the names aren’t right, nothing is).

1. SUZIE Q (Intern #1)

Yep, directly as a result of listening to “Suzy Q” on repeat — I like the song, I like the beat, I like the guitar licks. I just wanted the girl’s name to be musically/lyrically linked to a rock-n-roll song :) [it’ll make more sense once you link the lyrics to the first page in the book].

2. CHESTER TAYLOR ADAMSKI (Intern #2)

Because I was playing around with his name being “Chester T., and his nickname being “Chas-ti-ty” (he’s referred to as “Chester” mostly, throughout the book), since the theme/concept of Book 1 in the SINS07 seven deadly sins series is “lust” after all.

I changed his name to Chester Evans (based on feedback that the last name “Adamski” was “too weird”), then I changed it back again. I thought it sounded more interesting / better suited the character (no offense to any “Chester Evanses” out there).

3. JO.ZEE (21 year old dance instructor/choreographer)

A.K.A. “Josh/Joshua Zee” — I thought adding the dot in the name was a contemporary touch, like Will.i.am and Linkin Park’s song, Figure.09. Probably subconsciously influenced by a dance student I knew, whose name incidentally, was Joshua. Damn, he was really hot.

4. FUNKY FUNKY (night club)


— Image from Atlanta Exchange.

A dance battle takes place at a club called Funky², in the book (the club is first mentioned in Chapter 2, when the interns are on their way to their hotel). There’s a real club in Seoul called Club Funky Funky (a small club which combines a live band with a DJ who plays anything from rock and funk to hip-hop).

5. TRESOR ACADEMY (Hairdressing Academy)


— Image from Toni & Guy HK.

Trésor means “treasure” in French (mentioned in the book too). This is really a fictitious version of the Toni & Guy Academy, which I practically visited on a monthly basis during my late teen years. They were/are really good.

6. ROXETH (Setting / City)

City Nightscape
— Photo by MARKNKL.

Roxeth is actually a real place (in the UK / 5 seconds’ research on Google will tell you where exactly). I liked the sound of the name (something cool, and a little bit edgy). The cities in my writing projects tend to be generic/fictitious cities, instead of the actual names of the real places. I feel there’s more room for variation/reader interpretation, that way.

P.S. I grew up in Singapore (the picture above), so every urban city is always going to have an element of “familiarity” to me, heh.

7. LYSISTRATA MUSEUM (Site of Internship)

I had to always check the spelling of “Lysistrata” at first. It’s a play written by Aristophanes.

* Side Note: The whole idea of the museum internship was influenced by some blog posts I read by a museum intern.