Character Names

6385463When writing stories, finding character names offers the author as much decision making as naming your first born child. You want your characters to be memorable, realistic, and where people won’t make fun of them because of their names.

When naming your character consider the following;

  1. Names are often tied to an era. Jennifer or Ida determine the time period those names were made popular. Joyce, Marge, and other names are perfect for grandmother types, while Trisha or Natalie are for younger generations.
  2. Names imply heritage and culture. A first/last name that is Italian, German, or Spanish opens up all sorts of possibilities to add cultures, heritage, and language to characters.
  3. Names tie into identity. If a character’s name is Allison, she might go by Al or Alice. I know one Allison who also went by Alamo for fun. This determined her playfulness with her name. Someone who insists on being called by their full name also speaks more of their personality.
  4. Middle names also offer a character’s family. For instance, in my family, boys often receive their father’s first name. Middle names are often given in honor of someone the parents’ knew or wish to honor. I knew a guy with the middle name of Youngblood who had parents that admired a hockey player by that same name.

Names speak so much about ourselves, so with choosing names, consider your character’s background and how you will incorporate more depth and dimension to them.

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