Gimme Shelter (and win one of my books)

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If you’re near Wilmington, NC Friday evening June 26th, stop by Two Sisters’ Bookery between 4 and 7. I’d love to meet you!

There is a setting in my work-in-progress, The Lies We Told, that I need to name. You, my readers, have helped me name both books and characters in the past, so I’m turning to you once again for inspiration. If I use the name one of you suggests, I’ll send you an autographed copy of The Courage Tree

Here’s the setting: Picture a backwoodsy area of coastal North Carolina. In real life, there’s a (much nicer) area called Holland Shelter on a tributary of the Cape Fear River. I like the word Shelter, which fits both the locale and the storyline. So I’m looking for “_____ Shelter”. 

_____ Shelter is actually a peninsula of sorts. Like Holland Shelter, it’s on a tributary of the Cape Fear but that’s where the similarities end. _____ Shelter  is attached to the mainland by a long, very narrow strip of land, so that when the area floods and that strip is underwater, _____ Shelter becomes an island, cut off from the mainland. If you don’t have a boat, you’re trapped until the floodwaters go down. And of course, my characters don’t have a boat.

The house in the picture (a real house I snapped on a recent trip to the area) belongs to one of the characters who lives in _____ Shelter, so you get an idea of what life is like. Not great. πŸ™

The situation is scary from a pyschological perspective and to a lesser degree, from a physical perspective. But it’s also an emotional story. As is usually the case with my books, there’s a little bit of everything! So the blank in _____ Shelter should be a word that evokes trouble and mystery, with a healthy dose of poignancy.

I look forward to your ideas, and may the best ______ win!


  1. Julie on June 23, 2009 at 10:35 pm

    Oh, another fun game …
    Haint Shelter (as in, the southern colloquialism for ghost or evil spirit)
    Deadman’s Shelter
    Hangman’s Shelter
    Crook’s Shelter
    Crook Shelter
    Lonesome Shelter
    Lost Souls Shelter
    Spinster Shelter
    Reaper’s Shelter
    Shadow Shelter
    Hushabye Shelter
    Defiance Shelter
    Last Mile Shelter
    Lost Isle Shelter
    Mercy’s Shelter
    Infant Isle Shelter
    Yonder Isle Shelter

  2. Jenni Graham on June 23, 2009 at 10:54 pm

    I know I already replied via twitter, but wasn’t sure if you wanted the response here. My suggestion is “Tribulation Shelter.” I know it’s fairly obvious, but at the same time…. it’s just fitting.

  3. Denise on June 23, 2009 at 11:25 pm

    Restless Shelter
    Floating Shelter
    Devil’s Shelter
    Troubled Shelter
    Satan’s Shelter
    Breaking Shelter

  4. Donna Riddel on June 23, 2009 at 11:28 pm

    What about Raven’s Shelter? Or something else that evokes Edgar Allen Poe (=trouble & mystery)? Poe’s Shelter? Nevermore? Bleak Shelter?

  5. Lindsay on June 23, 2009 at 11:30 pm

    For some reason the only thing coming to my mind is “Willow Shelter”. I can’t get past that one to think up anything clever πŸ™‚

  6. Denise on June 23, 2009 at 11:33 pm

    Mine aren’t as poetic as Julie and Donna’s. Lol
    Heartbreak Shelter
    Misery Shelter
    Anguish Shelter
    Stormy Shelter
    Placid Shelter

  7. Denise on June 23, 2009 at 11:35 pm

    Demon’s Shelter
    Spirit’s Shelter

  8. Doreen on June 23, 2009 at 11:57 pm

    Isthmus Shelter
    Preservation Shelter
    Vulnerable Shelter
    Peril Shelter
    Precarious Shelter
    Salvation Shelter
    Wispy Shelter
    Haunting Shelter
    Good luck, Diane!

  9. Liz on June 24, 2009 at 12:05 am

    Hope view Shelter
    Moody Brook Shelter
    Moody Shelter

  10. Kerry Struif on June 24, 2009 at 1:03 am

    Tidal Shelter
    Random Shelter
    Shrouded Shelter
    Dunes Shelter
    Shelter Grove
    Secluded Shelter
    Dark Shelter
    Boondocks Shelter
    Shuttered Shelter
    Blind Shelter
    Secret Shelter
    Crumbling Shelter
    Backwater Shelter
    Remote Shelter
    Sad Shelter
    Soiled Shelter
    Spoiled Shelter
    Forsaken Shelter
    Spectral Shelter
    Suspicous Shelter
    Indian Falls Shelter
    Lost Shelter
    P.S. I absolutely loved your book The Secret Life of CeeCee Wilkes. I couldn’t put it down! In fact, I found myself saying, “Don’t do it!” to CeeCee, willing her not to follow the path she was on. Great writing! I went out and bought as many of your books as the bookstore had. Good luck with the new one!

  11. Margo on June 24, 2009 at 8:01 am

    This isn’t easy but here’s what I came up with:
    Chanting Wind Shelter
    SpiritDream Shelter
    MercyWind Shelter
    Whisper Wind Shelter
    Echo Moon Shelter
    Falling Pine Shelter
    SpiritDream Shelter
    Moon Fog Shelter
    Last Run Shelter
    Back Bay Shelter
    Sacred Moon Shelter
    Edgewater Shelter
    MoonWind Shelter

  12. Margo on June 24, 2009 at 8:16 am

    Fallen Bay Shelter
    LunaBlu Shelter
    LunaWind Shelter

  13. Reggie on June 24, 2009 at 8:34 am

    Penitent Shelter

  14. Margo on June 24, 2009 at 9:42 am

    Heartbreak Shelter

  15. Margo on June 24, 2009 at 10:35 am

    SandyCoffin…don’t know where I came up with this one…
    Diane, maybe if I could read your manuscript I’d come up with something better (lol) (-O: (-O: (-O:

  16. Jodi on June 24, 2009 at 3:29 pm

    Crow Shelter
    Whirlwind Shelter
    Tempest Shelter
    Widow’s Shelter
    Outbreak Shelter
    Fray Shelter
    Eternity Shelter
    Phantasm Shelter
    Phantom Shelter
    Fantasia Shelter
    Sorcery Shelter
    Incantation Shelter
    Apparition Shelter

  17. Diane Chamberlain on June 24, 2009 at 3:37 pm

    Kerry, I’m so glad you loved CeeCee!

  18. Diane Chamberlain on June 24, 2009 at 3:40 pm

    What a great bunch of names for my shelter. I think I may have painted a bleaker picture of the place than it deserves, though. LOL. Haven’t decided yet, so feel free to keep thinking. the one that has made me laugh out loud so far is Boondocks Shelter. πŸ™‚ I’m not using it, but I just thought it was pretty funny.

  19. Denise on June 24, 2009 at 3:50 pm

    Refuge Shelter
    Hermitage Shelter
    Palisade Shelter
    Hideout Shelter
    Haunted Shelter
    Spectral Shelter
    Wizened Shelter
    Mystery Shelter
    Mercurial Shelter
    Tranquil Shelter
    Celestial Shelter
    Homeless Shelter (haha just kidding)

  20. Joan Wanamaker on June 24, 2009 at 3:57 pm

    I’m thinking:
    Hollow Shelter
    Endless Shelter
    Phoenix Shelter
    Endurance Shelter
    Heart’s End Shelter
    Blissful Shelter
    Life’s Valley Shelter
    Shallow Shelter
    Whispering Dew Shelter
    Phoenix Rising Shelter
    Hopeful Bliss Shelter
    Blue Bayou Shelter
    Lovelorn Shelter
    Timeless End Shelter

  21. Denise on June 24, 2009 at 4:00 pm

    Helter Shelter (haha)
    Eternal Shelter
    Bottleneck Shelter (I’m grasping)
    Damnation Shelter
    Astral Shelter

  22. Diane Chamberlain on June 24, 2009 at 4:22 pm

    “Homeless Shelter”!!!! LOL!

  23. Jodi on June 24, 2009 at 4:47 pm

    Oh…also –
    Ghoul’s Shelter
    Casket Shelter
    Squall Shelter
    Trance Shelter
    Pulse Shelter
    Black Hole Shelter
    White Light Shelter
    Witch’s Glare Shelter
    Dream Catcher’s Shelter
    Hell’s Whisper Shelter
    Drifter’s Eye Shelter
    …okay that’s enough of me. πŸ˜‰ Good Luck, Diane! I recently discovered your work…and haven’t gone a day without reading one of your books.

  24. Diane Chamberlain on June 24, 2009 at 6:07 pm

    Jodi, this is a virtual hug for being a faithful reader! {{{{{{Jodi}}}}}}}

  25. Patty Rumaker on June 24, 2009 at 6:18 pm

    Forgotten Shelter
    Unforgotten Shelter
    Sinking Shelter
    Battered Shelter
    Sunken Shelter
    Desperation Shelter
    Weeping Shelter
    Isolation Shelter
    Tearful Shelter
    Howling Shelter
    Molting Shelter (Blue Crabs hard vs soft shell – the process is dangerous for them)
    Tidal Shelter
    Dying Shelter

  26. Robyn Lee on June 24, 2009 at 6:26 pm

    Storms of Life Shelter
    Life’s Stormy Shelter
    Teardrop Shelter
    Flowing Tears Shelter
    Magical Shelter
    Winds of Tide Shelter
    Rare Winds Shelter
    Rainy Days Shelter
    Moody Blues Shelter
    Green Acres Shelter
    Sandy Dunes Shelter

  27. Betty Savage on June 24, 2009 at 7:11 pm

    Usher Shelter (as in Fall of the House of…)
    Quaver Shelter
    Quail Shelter (with double meaning)
    Madcap Shelter
    Key Shelter or Shelter Key
    Islet Shelter
    Freshet Shelter ( my favorite of mine)
    Snare Shelter
    Snag Shelter
    Squall Shelter
    Savage Shelter (couldn’t resist)
    Torrid Shelter
    Gibbet Shelter
    Dole Shelter
    Dolor Shelter
    What fun! Haven’t had my thesaurus out since I retired…good luck, Diane…

  28. Julie on June 24, 2009 at 7:20 pm

    Thought of a few more with your clarification! Don’t think I see them anywhere.
    Hideway Shelter
    Hidden Shelter
    Hidden Isle Shelter
    Isle of Tears Shelter
    Hallows Shelter
    And Homeless Shelter and Helter Shelter are hilarious!!!

  29. Lindsay on June 24, 2009 at 7:56 pm

    I came back to add “Whispering Shelter” and I see someone put “Whispering Dew Shelter”, I like that one too. Some of the others that stand out for me upon a quick glance include: Falling Pine Shelter, Fallen Bay Shelter, and Green Acres Shelter— but that’s just a couple because there’s sooo many here for you to consider Diane πŸ™‚ Good Luck finding the name that feels right for the story

  30. brenda on June 24, 2009 at 10:25 pm

    Diane-I just left the West Coast-Wash.-flew back to Florida-leaving in a day or so for California–but had to take time to check your site…
    Why not Shelter Island–not cutesy…not out there…like Sullivan’s Island…Edisto Island-even though they are not true islands?????
    NOT PLEASE NOT GREEN ACRES-that is the name of my street, and I don’t like that name-you would not believe the jokes. I live in nothing like G. Acres.

  31. Diane Chamberlain on June 24, 2009 at 10:58 pm

    Welcome home, Brenda!
    I’m going to leave this blog post up for a couple more days because I’m off to Wilmington, NC tomorrow to do a little TV, radio, and booksigning. Then I’ll have a chance to seriously sort through all these great ideas! As I skim them, though. . . .I’m starting to think some of them would sound better as “Blank Point” instead of “Blank Shelter.” But don’t worry. If I end up using your idea with “Point” instead of “Shelter”, you’ll still be the winner!
    Meanwhile, if any of you are in the Wilmington, NC area Friday between 4 and 7, please stop by Two Sisters’ Bookery and say “hi”!

  32. fran kling on June 24, 2009 at 11:09 pm

    decaying shelter

  33. Anna Adam on June 25, 2009 at 1:26 am

    Could only think of the one! πŸ™‚

  34. Denise on June 25, 2009 at 9:04 am

    Don’t know if these have been given:
    Spyglass Shelter
    Women’s Shelter πŸ˜›

  35. Margo on June 25, 2009 at 10:15 am

    Wish I were going to be in Wilmington…
    Diane, I think it’s hard to come up with something that flows easily with the word shelter, but I can understand wanting to use the word if it fits the story…I think ‘point’ might have a few better options…however, here are a few more names:
    Somewhere Shelter
    Squak Shelter

  36. Margo on June 25, 2009 at 12:39 pm

    ShadyPoint Shelter

  37. Janet on June 25, 2009 at 1:59 pm

    My first immediate thought was:
    Precarious – and I see someone else was with me on that…
    I also liked ~
    Seldom Shelter

  38. Joan Wanamaker on June 25, 2009 at 4:31 pm

    Ok a few more πŸ™‚ I like this:
    Nightfall Shelter
    Bittersweet Shelter
    Break Point Shelter
    Breaker’s Shelter
    Breaker’s Point Shelter
    Legend’s End Shelter
    Fastway Point Shelter
    End-Of-The-Road Shelter
    Soulful Shelter
    Sinner’s Shelter

  39. RobynL on June 26, 2009 at 4:55 pm

    Pine Falls Shelter
    Dawn’s Shelter(as in the time of day)
    Light Beams Shelter
    Loneliness Shelter
    Heartbreak Shelter
    Blue Waters Shelter

  40. I. Leach on June 26, 2009 at 5:25 pm

    I love your books. I just read “Secrets She Left Behind” How about the name Ivy’s Shelter

  41. Christy on June 26, 2009 at 6:03 pm

    Don’t know why I came up with this but it was my very first thought…
    Staid Shelter
    I think it would also work with Point.
    Good luck choosing! You have LOTS of great options!
    ~*~ Christy ~*~

  42. Margo on June 26, 2009 at 7:16 pm

    I promise, this is the last idea (lol) (-O:
    H aven Shelter (letter ‘e’ missing or hanging low
    and crooked after the H)
    H aven’s Shelter (same thing with the letter ‘e’)

  43. Diane Chamberlain on June 26, 2009 at 8:31 pm

    Margo, that’s very clever! I’m working on selecting the winner and hope to get the post up tonight.

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