Brenda W. Clough over at Book View Café makes mention of the Beyond the Mist naming contest (although she links to the announcement at SuperversiveSF rather than here), and has this to say about it:
I would never in a thousand years do this. A contest to name the protagonist? A character with whom I am going to be spending the next year of my mental life, whose every dream, digestive upset, sexual encounter and trauma from birth to grave I am going to invent out of whole cloth? I would never hand over such power to anyone; I shall reign like Alexander, and I shall reign alone.
You can’t pick the name for your hero off a list.
She is right, of course. I would never normally surrender control of such a pivotal character-molding parameter and guard my creations with absolute care. So what has happened to my sanity in this case? My response:
Before anyone asks, nobody else suggested to me that I do this, I have been planning it for more than six months and first suggested the idea to the editor of the journal three months ago. He gave the go-ahead, and here we are.
It is a risk, and I wouldn’t do it for any other venue, but I have faith in the intelligence of Sci Phi Journal‘s readership (a journal dedicated to philosophy and science fiction is going to attract intelligent readers). My faith seems to be justified- I had a placeholder name in mind, but the very first (and currently winning) entry suggested a name that I would happily use instead.
I expect most of the entries will come in after Issue 6 is out, and if someone can come up with something better, great.
I look forward to reading what else Sci Phi Journal’s fine readership can come up with. Don’t disappoint me!