About the Aleph Series
A bit of background on the Aleph Series, answering questions about the how's and why's of my world of Weres.
I've always been a fan of fantasy, science fiction, and paranormal. Long before the genre paranormal existed, I lived on the stories of Greek and Roman mythology. I've always been a voracious reader of just about anything I could get my hands onto. My normal day in school meant walking into the library, grabbing whatever was sitting on top of the shelf, checking it out, reading it that night, and repeating the cycle the next day. With such a variety of books over the years, my stories will always mix things up and cross over genres.
After several years of reading different kinds of paranormal, my mind took off by itself. Many of the stories about werewolves or vampires made them just a step above monsters. My brain didn't like that. It came up with a reasonable explanation - one that was science based... and it went from there into a whole world and stories that are interconnected. In my world of Weres, magic does not exist. The exact How's of a shifter's ability to shift is just something that science hasn't figured out yet. With discoveries about quantam physics, quarks, and string theory, magic doesn't need to be real... unexplained natural phenomina is perfectly suitable. I mean, for millenia, colds, flus, viruses, and bacteria were thought to be punishment from the gods, or from God, until science figured it out. So it is with my world, Weres know they're shifting is science based, and even that it's viral based - they just can't tell you why. Yet.
Knowing that my world was science based, as a firmly religious person, I didn't want to make any of my stories godless or athiestic, so I put just enough in that there is a happy mix of the two. I do not believe that science and religion are mutually exclusive. We humans don't like things we can't understand, or can't control, and an entire sub-species of human, the Weres, would not be an exception. Having to hide among humans, it made sense to find a population that, throughout history, has had to do the same. For me, it was logical that the Jewish people, would be a perfect symbiotic partner for Weres: a flip flopping history of proctection and hiding throughout the centuries.
Using this relationship as a vehicle, I decided that the Regional Alpha's family would have a Hebrew name, a visible reminder of a shared history. I've always admired King Solomon - in his youth - and decided that his name was strong enough to be used for my Regional Alpha. But keeping with the Hebrew, aleph is their letter equivalent to alpha in Greek. A fitting name for a werewolf alpha and his family.
There's nothing really awesome about her name. Llewellyn is the last name of a neighbor kid when I was in high school, and I always thought it sounded cool. Jamie - Jameson - is the name of the heroine in many of the stories in my head starting way back in high school. The Aleph Series is just the first time, in publication, that it's been used.
Who doesn't just love Mr. Darcy? Yep, that's where it came from. As for Pederson (pronounced peh der son; not peed erson)... blame my brain for making his name complicated. I liked the way it sounded.
I have family members whose last names could be first names, and a guy in my school some years when by Todd, and other years, David - I still don't know which was his middle name and which was his first name. But I thought it was cool to have something interchangeable.
Being fully Jewish, born and raised in Israel, he needed an immediately recognizable as Jewish. And Rasmussen... I've known a few. Whether or not it's a popular last name in Israel *shrug* but it is in the U.S.
Sarah and Jethro Aleph
Sarah's name just happens to be Biblical, that wasn't planned, she picked her name. Jethro, and his father, Adam, continued honoring the Jewish partnership by having their names from the Old Testament. Jethro was the father-in-law of Moses.
Stevens is what I came up with first, when writing Solomon Aleph, because Marines use last names when talking to or about each other, and that just hit right during the scene when Jamie is in her wolf form. It wasn't until I decided to make a bad guy out of him that he needed a first name. Alan is a basic name. And with his last name, sounds normal. Which he isn't.