In the kind of books I write the hero is usually the strong, silent type - with a job that tends to fly somewhere under the radar, or even on the wrong side of the track. Not revealing too much is a given - it's taken as a virtue. Which is not a problem, except when they are not even willing to talk to me.
I'm currently kicking around ideas for a trio of connected novellas that centre around a house and a government department that isn't black ops, but might be classed as the darker end of grey. (No, not that kind of grey.)
And three books gives me three heroes - a nice place to be, you might think - and it is, once I can get them to talk to me. And they could start with a name ...
Many authors will tell you that getting the right name for a character is important. The wrong choice can make the whole book feel uncomfortable. I don't know why, it just does. Trust me on this. And which is why I have a problem - as my three guys are being particularly difficult about names - as in not being willing to tell me what they are. Mr X, from Book One - naturally, it has to be Book One - is being especially evasive. He's begun to make conversation - not with me, but with the dog - but there's no hint of a name. I've tried explaining that at the very least he could part with name, rank and serial number - even the enemy gets that - but he's not buying it. And really, I'm not the enemy. Although if he has any idea of some of the stuff I'm planning to put him through, he might not be convinced on that. But he's not going through the mill as much as the hero in Book Two who has given me a first name - Lex - but nothing else. Number Three? For him I have a last name - Kelvert. He's the buttoned-up, back-room type, so it might take a while for anyone to use his first name, so I'm OK with that at the moment. Romilly, his heroine, knows what it is, as they go way back to school days together, so she might tell me at some stage.
All this is going on in my head at present. It's a bit busy in there at the moment with three sets of characters tramping around. Actually, make that four, as there is also a full length book in the mental works too. And I'm fighting the hero on that one, as he's emphatic that his name is Charlie and I'm not sure I can work with that.
None of this is on paper yet and it's not likely to be until someone starts talking
I'm not going anywhere until I get a name ...