Naming Characters: Who are you?

Naming a character might be a bit like naming a child. Except in this case, I already know the character intimately because as the author, they are someone I’ve spent a great deal of time creating and thinking about. I know their personality, their likes and dislikes, their strengths and weaknesses and how they’re going to grow. So when it comes time to name this inspired character, the name has to suit them. At least in my opinion.

One of the first steps I take when naming a character is compiling a list of names from various name generators and naming books. I look at meanings from a certain culture or language group so the names are consistent. I do this for most of my characters. Once the list is compiled, I try to choose the name(s) that best suits the kind of story I’m writing along with the world the characters find themselves a part of.

Sometimes characters don’t have a name when I first start writing, or their name gets changed. In this case, there are usually a few options and until the character is more ‘solid’ their name adjusts. But it’s a fun process and when the name settles on the character, it feels right. It’s a moment that becomes, ‘nice to meet you, __________.”

Over the next few days, I’m going to talk about some of the characters in my novels and how their names came about.

(Picture created with Canva)

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