Valor of the Healer

Which spelling looks best?

Those of you who’ve beta-read Lament of the Dove for me or who have been following my posts about the edits to it may recall that among the various bits of feedback I’ve gotten (both from Carina Press’ editor and from beta readers) is that it was a bit unclear as to the distinction between the nation of Adalonia and its smaller neighbor which it absorbed, Alendar. It was suggested to me that I rename one of them in order to help make the place names more distinct, and I’ve been thinking about that. Alendar is I think the one I want to rename, given that I’m less wedded to that name than I am Adalonia.

That got me to thinking. A lot of the names in this story are mutated versions of Gaelic names, but some of them were inspired by Norse-style names–like ‘Vaarsen’, Kestar’s last name, and a couple of other surnames of minor NPCs. So when I looked up what various place names in the real world are in Scots Gaelic, I was surprised to see that the Scots Gaelic for Norway is ‘Nirribhidh’.

That immediately grabbed my eye. If I finagle that around a bit the same way I’ve done other names in Lament, I may be able to come up with a replacement name for the unfortunately conquered nation of Alendar. The question is, what altered spelling would look best?

This is where you all come in. Tell me, o Internets, which spelling you like best? I do want this general idea of names and I think I prefer these vowels–they help create a different look than ‘Adalonia’ when reading, and a softer sound when I say it aloud. It’s also something that sounds in-universe like it might have been derived from an older Elvish name, which is appropriate given that the folk of Alendar have always been friendlier to the elvenkind than the Adalons have.

If you’re looking at this post on LJ or Dreamwidth, please click over onto the original post on the WordPress blog to vote on the poll. Otherwise, drop your vote in the comments!

What spelling should I use for the replacement name for Alendar?

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