Take the 2-minute tour ×
Writers Stack Exchange is a question and answer site for authors, editors, reviewers, professional writers, and aspiring writers. It's 100% free, no registration required.

If I reference a character, whom, for the current context is given a label, such as "The Skull", should I include the word "The"?

The following snippet should clarify my question:

Our mission is to assassinate an elite member of a crime syndicate. In my clan, he is known as "The Skull", a title reflective of the image that covers his head. The Skull ...

Should the initial label be the "Skull" or "The Skull"

share|improve this question
add comment

2 Answers 2

up vote 5 down vote accepted

If you're tipping so far into melodrama that you've called your villain The Skull, then embrace it and capitalize "The." You can even make a bit of gallows humor out of it and have the protagonists joke about whether Jack The Ripper or Winnie The Pooh were named for him, whether he stole the idea from The Donald, etc.

share|improve this answer
add comment

What do the bad guys' buddies call him when talking to him? "Good morning, The Skull, how did you sleep?" Or is it, "Good morning, Skull, how did you sleep?"

Even more telling, is how his buddies refer to him in the third person. "I hope The Skull tells me to make coffee." Or, "I hope Skull tells me to make coffee."

Also telling is how the bad guy introduces himself. "Hello, I'm The Skull." Or, "Hello, I'm Skull."

If "Skull" is more like a title (e.g., Boss, Colonel), then it's definitely lowercase "t". Example: "I'm making coffee for the Skull. What's that, Skull? OK, Skull. The Skull wants you to make him some scrambled eggs."

share|improve this answer
add comment

Your Answer

 
discard

By posting your answer, you agree to the privacy policy and terms of service.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.