A couple years ago, after Asylum released, an interviewer asked me about the title. What importance does it carry? I loved this question because I did put a lot of thought into the title. It has a great deal of meaning beyond the definition of the word.
Asylum has a double meaning. We know the phrase "insane asylum" which can have a pretty bad connotation to it. The word is used for haunted houses and other frightening experiences. But it also is defined as a place of safety and refuge - a sanctuary. So with the Straightjacket experience, the word asylum came to mind. And of course, I'm all for happy endings. Without trying to spoil the ending for the readers, the main characters, following all the harrowing events, end up in a place of safety. They find their asylum.
The same goes for Poison. There is a double meaning behind the title. While the obvious reference is to Thaed, the villain that influences the entire story arc of The Crown's Call, it also refers to the lesser villain, Velius. His internal demons lead him further and further down a dark path until he reaches the proverbial point of no return.
I also toy with this in the names of the characters. In my ears, they sound pretty exotic and cool, but they have meanings as well.
Gaultier is a name meaning "strong ruler; commander of the army."
Lassiter is my little tribute to Firefly. (If you don't know that reference, watch the show! You won't regret it.)
Marcella is a name meaning "warlike; strong."
Velius is a Roman name meaning "concealed."
Hanileh is a variation of the name Hannah, which means "favor; grace."
Thaed is an anagram of the word "death."
Raum is chill-inspiring. In demonology, he is the great earl of Hell. It is said of him, "He loves children and will target their souls." Raum translates from German to mean "space; room; chamber." Gives me the willies!
Many of my minor characters are also named according to their station. Castus, for instance, translates from Latin to mean, "chaste; innocent."
I enjoy adding this extra layer to my writing. Not only do I end up with some really neat names, I also learn something. The detail is gripping for the readers. When I tell people what certain things mean, they are blown away. It resonates on a totally different level.
Asylum is full of these extra tidbits, too. In fact, that's where I really began to employ this technique. Name meanings, language translations, and anagrams. It's intriguing! At least, it is to me.
Award-winning sci-fi author * Christ follower, wife, and mom * broadcast content producer. And yes, I am a real duchess. http://amzn.to/2eLTlH3