Wednesday, October 26, 2011
Question of the day-What's in a name, anyway?
Four more days till Keepers goes live!
As we count down the release for Keepers, I've been answering questions that readers have regarding the series. One of the most asked questions has been about the name Kailmeyra itself. Where did it come from?
As a teacher I research everything. And so when I started thinking about what to call Gavin's land, it was no easy task. I didn't want to name it something obvious like Admeil, which is Hebrew and literally means "God's Earth" or "man of God". I didn't want it to be hard to pronounce, like Celestynka, which is Latin and means "heavenly, or divine".
No, Gavin's land had to be a word that had not been seen before. It had to be something that wasn't so simplistic people would scoff (like Utopina :- ). And so I started mixing words and meaning together to create something from the ancient language. It's the only word we'll ever know from the Alfar world, and so I wanted it to be special.
The word Kailmeyra is an amalgam of various meanings. The first half, "Kail", was created when I added two words together. "Kai" is taken from the welsh name Cai. It's a name of feminine origin meaning to rejoice. Caelum is the latin word for sky or heaven. Originally the name was spelled Cailmeyra, but there was some debate whether readers would naturally make the beginning syllable a hard C and so we changed it to K. The Second half of the word is a bit more complicated.
Meira is a Hebrew name meaning to shine or shining. Meilyr is Welsh for prince. As the first half of the word held a feminine origin to symbolize Nora, I thought it only appropriate, the second half represent Gavin. The most important factor of this word, however, is the inclusion of Myrrh. Myrrh is a spice that is, at times, as valuable as gold. It has been used for thousands of years for everything from the Egyptians embalming the dead with it, to Kuwaiti's ingesting it to help lower blood sugar. However, the most famous story of the use of Myrrh was as a gift from the Magi to the Christ child.
And so I combined these meanings and came up with the land Kailmeyra. It was my intent that it be a place of purity, where evil didn't exist, more valuable than silver or gold. A place that rejoiced just for existing. A place worthy of love.