Questions tagged [naming]

Questions about creating and using names.

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9
votes
6answers
2k views

Naming Side characters

So, basically, how do you name side characters? I get that you should give the main characters meaningful names, but finding suitable names for all of my characters is distracting and time-consuming. ...
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1answer
45 views

Character name trademarks and copyrights [duplicate]

I've had some characters for a while for a comic I'm wanting to write, and until now I never thought about name copyright and trademarks. After looking it up, quite a few of my characters have the ...
2
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3answers
78 views

When is it better to use a real life versus a generic fast food company name when talking about a regional chain?

So, I know that questions regarding the usage of real-life company names has been brought up before, but this is a really weird example that I've run into that doesn't seem covered by the previous ...
1
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4answers
169 views

Should I use pre-existing names for mythical creatures, or make up my own names?

I'm researching about different mythical creatures for my book, and I want to use Nymphs in it, there are different types of them such as mountain nymphs and sea nymphs. In Greek mythology they have ...
29
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13answers
7k views

Is there a more modern version of “Acme”, as a common, generic company name?

Yes, Acme is an actual company name used by many real companies - bricks, bikes, food, real estate, etc. But more relevant to this point, it has also been used for ages for fictional purposes - not ...
2
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2answers
25k views

How to create a good name for a fictional nation in my story?

I really have problems giving the military nation of my protagonist a unique, but also serious name that fits into the whole military nation thing. So here are my questions: What makes a name sound ...
6
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5answers
989 views

Should I name my characters based off of their personality? [duplicate]

So I'm writing a book, and in my book, I have a habit to name every one of my characters based on their personality. My main characters, Luna and Cyrus mean sun and moon, but not only are they soul ...
2
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4answers
492 views

Is thematic character naming off putting?

Is naming a character to go with a theme or setting of a novel off-putting for the reader? Does this pull them out of the story? For example: A character named digit in a cyberpunk future or one named ...
5
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5answers
382 views

When naming a character, is thematic naming or realistic naming more important?

Or is there a way to strike a balance between thematic naming and realistic naming? Thematic: When the name relates to the character directly. Example: someone who only wears black clothes has the ...
1
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2answers
95 views

In a Novel, What is the Proper Way to Refer to a Group by Their Self-Styled Label?

In a novel, what is the proper way in US English to refer to a group by the character's self-styled label? For example: In a novel, assume a group of software coders are working on an extremely ...
0
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2answers
131 views

My Middle Name Is Amara And I Want To Add It To My Book [duplicate]

I'm writing a series that has to do with vampires. My middle name is Amara, and I personally find that name really, really pretty. I wanted to add it to my book as the name of the main character but I ...
1
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2answers
68 views

Can I use the name of a character if they have totally different traits? [duplicate]

I'm writing a 7 book series and I wanted to use the name Roth in my series. However, I've seen this name used before in The Dark Elements series by Jennifer Armentrout. If my Roth is a totally ...
5
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2answers
4k views

How do I create a good naming system for the magic system in my Fantasy novel?

So there is a magic system in my novel, and I'm struggling to give each power its own name. Each power is paired with another, and the names must sound similar, only with a twist. Criteria for a ...
11
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4answers
2k views

Dealing with annoying quirks: Long names

In the story I am currently writing, the culture has an obsession with unique names for each individual person. For some poor saps, this means ridiculously long, quintuple-hyphenated names. Of course, ...
15
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6answers
839 views

Is it better to avoid names with a difficult pronunciation in Middle Grade fiction?

Many languages are written using Latin letters, but often these seemingly familiar letters aren't pronounced in the way that we are used to. For example, an English speaker might read the name ...
12
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10answers
2k views

Character with two names

I have a character with two names. Well not two distinct names, but rather two forms of the same name. My story is set in the later Roman Empire, but the characters are Romanized easterners living on ...
6
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7answers
2k views

How late in the book editing process can you change a character’s name?

I am on the last edit before I send my book to beta readers for the first time, and I'm not sold on two of my characters names since they sound similar. One is Zeidric, with the "ei" ...
18
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7answers
28k views

Characters with no names

I've got a few short stories going, and I've foregone naming any of my characters. It started because I just didn't have any good names in my head and I was going to take care of it later, but now I'm ...
0
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5answers
256 views

Can I use they/them pronouns in a medieval style fantasy novel?

I'm writing a book and I'd really love to include a person with they/them pronouns. However, the novel takes place in a sort of medieval style fantasy world, and I don't think anyone would have used ...
0
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1answer
174 views

Two of my characters have the same names as two characters in a comic book/show. Should I change one of them?

So I'm currently starting to write this idea that I've had in my head for a long time and a couple of months ago, I realised that my main female characters have the same names as the main female ...
14
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11answers
13k views

Inventing names for Sci-Fi characters

How can I invent names for fictional characters in a future-setting Sci-Fi story so they won't be connected to any existing culture? I considered the following options: Invent some random names. ...
2
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1answer
164 views

Should a fantasy book only have fictional names?

My book is totally fantasy, full of made up countries and places, all with fictional names I created, but most of my characters have real names. Some are English, others are Asian, and some are even ...
2
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2answers
174 views

Referring to groups and unnamed individuals from groups in a screenplay

The following extract is from a screenplay I'm writing. I could really use some advice on how to format it, particularly around referring to groups of people and an unnamed person from a group. Bob ...
8
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6answers
2k views

What are good resources to get fantasy names?

I have trouble coming up with fantasy names. I've used random name generators but they weren't very helpful. Is there a website that would have fantasy names or Norse, or Celtic names?
0
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1answer
108 views

Can one of my POV characters have the last name Thibodaux and get published?

I live in Louisiana, and names with french origins are very common here. So we all know how they're pronounced. I'm worried that a publisher will want me to change the name as it may not be so obvious ...
2
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1answer
74 views

Introducing secondary characters

The dilemma I find myself in is introducing secondary characters. Say, this character - a family relative - only exists fleetingly in my story. The first time I introduce the character, I mention it's ...
3
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7answers
2k views

How to name characters of unspecific nationality and race?

I am writing a generic story. I have a setting that is not tied to a specific region on earth, though the story certainly does occur on earth, and there are numerous references in the setting that ...
41
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14answers
12k views

Do hard to pronounce names break immersion?

I have a character in my book named Jiolluav (with the correct accent, Zholl-you-of or /ʒōl-'yoo-äv/), and I've written my entire "novel" (it's a work in progress) using this name. When I asked a ...
4
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1answer
135 views

How can I learn about the aesthetic rules behind composing new names for things?

This is kind of difficult for me to describe, so let me lead with an example. Suppose I tell you there's a creature named Humbarum and another named Axratax. I'll ask you to start imagining what they'...
18
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11answers
7k views

How can I make names more distinctive without making them longer?

In the point-of-view culture in my story, all of the women in priestly families have two-syllable names beginning with vowels. (There are reasons for this, but they're completely unrelated to my ...
4
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5answers
2k views

Writing a character that has many names

So one of my main characters uses three different names throughout the story. There's his nickname Warlock, his name Andreas, and his shorthand name Dre. Warlock is probably used the most, enemies ...
5
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2answers
504 views

Using accent marks in Fantasy novels

I'm wondering what are the basic ways that accent marks should be used when coming up with fantasy names of people, places, etc. Sorry if this might be a little vague of a question.
3
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5answers
151 views

How to show a character with multiple personalitites?

To preface this, I have seen the question multiple personalities characters speech in text and I feel that my question is different enough, to warrant a separate question. In my book, a character has ...
9
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4answers
5k views

What are some good strategies to use when naming a fictional city?

I've read a lot of the questions on here concerning naming characters and deciding on whether to use a fictional city. I have already decided to use a fictional city in the piece. But, my problem with ...
1
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2answers
160 views

Characters with apostrophe names

I have created a world, and one of the cultures has mainly apostrophe names - Vax'Ildan, Vex'Ahlia, Soih'Ym... How would this work grammatically - possessive and nicknames, in writing? (To forestall ...
2
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2answers
108 views

Character name change

In my story I am writing in third person, my character is kidnaped and finds out his real name towards the end. Do I start referring to him with his real name or the name I used previously?
1
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3answers
155 views

Would it be bad taste or honoring to name a Starship after historical places, ex: Pompeii?

In my book, Earth is gone and are all the counties and a majority of the population and cultures. A small population is left and they make a home on another planet. Now, just under 200 years later, ...
3
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2answers
2k views

What are the copyright limitations for adopting a fictional character's name as your Pen Name?

I wanted to use 'Dumbledore' as a part of my pen name. But I was told that by doing so I might, I just might subject myself to suing by J.K. Rowling (if she intends to). Is that true? Can't I use ...
3
votes
1answer
61 views

The seller or the trader [closed]

I'm having difficulty choosing the seller or the trader when describing a character. He is selling things at a flea market and I personally prefer the seller, the sound of it. As English is not my ...
1
vote
2answers
81 views

How do I refer to an unnamed protagonist in third-person narration? [duplicate]

I am writing a story about a man who doesn't know his past, or his name. I have to reveal his name later in the story. Until then, how do I refer to him or narrate his dialogues? My story is in third-...
1
vote
1answer
116 views

Hierarchies and Role Titles - How do come up with them

I'm looking to see what everyone has used in the past to come up with hierarchies and position titles for your novels. For example, instead of using "President", "Prime Minister", "Pope", "Bishop", ...
20
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5answers
10k views

Current events may have ruined a name I was going to use

In the middle-grade series I'm working on, there are two organizations: one led by the antagonist, and one that opposes them, which the protagonists join. In the setting of the series, a very small ...
8
votes
5answers
587 views

What are some standards in naming a software/hardware version?

I am wondering if how we name a version of a spacecraft differs from how we name a version of a software. For software, I usually see things like "2.0.32.32" or something like that and sometimes they ...
2
votes
3answers
126 views

I'm having a bit of trouble fleshing out a character

I am having a bit of trouble getting into the head of one of my characters. He isn't one of the main protagonists, but he is allied with them. He is the husband of the leader of the group the ...
1
vote
2answers
191 views

Will naming a character Sindri make it too obvious that he isn't trustworthy? [closed]

I am writing a middle-grade series where a character is introduced early on as a supporter of the protagonists. He is enthusiastic at first, but grows more and more pessimistic as he realizes that ...
0
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3answers
5k views

Screenplay format: Can character names be shortened after the first mention?

For example: TED DIBAR, (40s) swings his cape to the side, as he approaches Felix. Do I need to continue to use the character's full name, or can I shorten it in subsequent mentions?
1
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7answers
215 views

Where to take names for characters?

Where to take names for characters? This is not about names, themselves. This is only about source for them. For examples: Cassandra, queen in post-apocalyptic age of my fantasy world, has name of ...
2
votes
7answers
345 views

Help! Character naming similarity

Okay so I am coming up with ideas for a potential story. I am naming my strong female protagonist and I looked up some character names. I like the old german last name Stark, it fits with my character ...
1
vote
3answers
209 views

Thinking About Fantasy Names

One of my favorite parts of writing is naming my people/places/systems. I look up synonyms of common words and add prefixes, or base things off of Latin roots, or just pull some cool letter ...
0
votes
2answers
46 views

Proper use of first-last name in a obituary?

I have to write my fathers obituary. I am not sure when it is proper to use a full name. We have kids, grand kids, and great grand kids. Are there rules or guidelines for using full names and what ...

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