Aryneth Building: What’s in a Name?

I know I’ve mentioned it in passing before, but for those of you reading my blog that might have been wondering, Aryneth is the world on which most of my science fiction and fantasy tales take place. Its history even has a bit of a steam-punk Western chapter, as well, but it is a world I have been building since I was in grade school. These days, I have an interesting relationship with it because, while my high school years were passed in full development of this fantastical place with a grand history, college did a good job of trying to shove a lot of that back. Now, don’t get me wrong, I loved my school, but there is a definitely turning-up-of-one’s-nose on genre fiction in the literary world of academia, and so I tried to throw my focus into things that might be more suited for a university palette.

Ultimately, it was a good thing. It pushed me beyond my comfort zone and helped encourage me to be a more diverse writer. After all, the only piece I’ve gotten published so far were definitely not genre fiction, and I sincerely believe they’re also two of my best written stories, too.

But now, especially with trying to rewrite Serpent in a Cage, I’m trying to reconnect with all my Arynethian roots, especially in starting to sketch again. So many of the details reveal themselves in my little scribbles of characters and places. So, since I don’t really have anything else to talk about today, I wanted to just talk a little bit about Aryneth and world building details that make the place more real to me and perhaps is just me being a great big dork.

Lately, though, I’ve been digging the naming structure set up for Battarack men. One of the lead characters of SiaC is Locke Mandrake Battarack. As the son of a Battarack leader, his name follows a traditional naming scheme of having his father’s name as his middle name. His father, Mandrake Battarack, was actually the third son; therefore, he has a more diminutive single name. Locke’s first born son ends up being Nolan Locke. His third son is simply Drake. (There is an exception to this: Locke and Aelis Maria have a son who does not survive, born after Nolan, whom they named Jack Hederrick, out of respect for a friend who died; they names their first daughter, Megg Serene, in quite the same fashion). Drake’s son is named simply Launce, as the immediate heirs to the leadership of the Battarack throne goes to Nolan’s sires (although the events of history go more with Launce!). Locke got the double names because his father, though he was the third son, took the leadership by the time Locke was born, so Locke was known to be the next leader, a very important part of SiaC.

For some reason, having this simple tradition implanted into the stories always makes me feel satisfied and pleased. I’ve been thinking about it a lot and wanted to share it in general like a little moment of pride that I’m creating something with traditions in. And it’s that feeling that carried me through the heaviest of creation time for Aryneth, and I hope to have some of that back again. “What’s in a name?” Quite a lot, really.

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