Welcome Lori Green, author of contemporary romance SUGAR B’s BACK IN TOWN, available from Lyrical Press at 30% off during the Christmas Bash!
LORI: In Sugar B’s Back in Town, the story existed because the name Sugar B. Johnson popped in my mind and wouldn’t leave. I played with a lot of ideas but then one day she was there: an adult movie actress returning home to a small Southern town and falling in love.
BREATHE: If you wrote in another genre, would it affect the names you picked for your characters? Why do you think this is?
LORI: I’m completely inspired either by a character name or a title. If I don’t have one of those two firmly entrenched in my mind then I can’t write.
In fact, I had a title come to mind: Captain Caboodle’s Oodles of Noodles and it completely said space opera to me. Now I need to make the rest of it as clear.
BREATHE: What is your favorite character name—either your own or somebody else’s? Why do you like this name?
LORI: My favorite character name was Lucy. She was in the first completed novel I wrote and she just delighted me. I’ve wanted to use the name again but every time I try… well, I can’t.
BREATHE: Do you feel a character’s name affects the way you write him or her?
LORI: I use a lot of friends’ and family’s names when I write. It allows me to assign certain characteristics to the character that frees me as a writer to use and evolve.
In Sugar, the mean girl’s name is Hamdi and that was taken from a beautiful woman I know with a beautiful soul and gentle demeanor. I told her I was going to make her the bad girl since she’s such a good girl in real life.
BREATHE: Are there any names you absolutely will not use for a character?
LORI: I won’t use my parents’ or siblings’ names. I don’t have a reason why, I just can’t.
“There’s a Chinese restaurant in Jones that ain’t bad. Maybe we could go there some Sunday?”
Like a date. The words hung in the air in front of me and I felt like I could examine them from any angle and they’d still be there, looking just the same. A date. A man and a woman who like each other going out as a couple and sharing a meal. Or maybe a man inviting a woman to a small apartment and making her a meal.
“I’ve never had a man make me dinner before.”
“They too busy buying you diamond rings?”
I knew he was teasing but there was something inside me that felt stuck. “Jerusalem, there’s some things–”
“You got a past, Sugar.” He laid a hand on top of mine and I saw softness in his expression that made me quiet, deep inside. “I don’t know everything about you but I know you got a mouth on you when you’re cussing out chickens and a crazy side that likes a bowl full of fish eyeballs. That’s all I care about.”
“I think I might be pretty broken.” It was the greatest truth I could share with him.
“I don’t know anyone that ain’t,” he answered, “and quite a few that just don’t care anyway.”