Writing Fantasy || Characters 2 – Names

Giving my main characters names helped me to organize their files on my ‘secret’ Pinterest boards and also I didn’t feel as rude when I talked to them. (Admit it, you do this too). I have a secret board for each of my main characters, which I’ll make public when I’m ready to publish my novel. You may choose to do things differently, but if you’re a beginner at this fantasy novel-writing thing like I am, bear with me and decide the best process for you as you gain experience.

Roy from 'The Kingdom' by Benjamin T. Collier
Fantasy Writing. Naming your characters.

Choosing Names For Your Fantasy Characters   #WritingFantasy   #FantasyNames

One site to go to for naming inspiration is Name Generator but I’ve found watching the credits from shows and movies to be especially inspiring, especially if the show was filmed in a place similar to my story world; such as Vikings, an historical drama filmed in the rugged terrain of Ireland and northern Canadian wilderness, and Shannara Chronicles, a post-apocalyptic fantasy based in the 6th millennium and filmed in New Zealand. The actors and production crew quite often have interesting native names.

Reading and researching old books from the countries or regions which have influenced your setting can be a big help too. Consider the character of Heathcliff in Wuthering Heights. Heath means ‘an area of land covered in heather or similar low dense shrubbery’, and Cliff is ‘a high steep rock or precipice’. Heathcliff is a perfect name for the dishevelled and tortured romantic hero living on the English moors.

Another way to create unique fantasy names is to pair the first name with an Occupation for your characters.

 

Here Are A Few #FantasyNames To Get You Started:

First Name (Occupation) Surname

Penelope (Courier) Donkeyrider

Dugan (Thief) Bagsnatcher

Ventrice (Cobbler) Shoemaker

Tola (Blacksmith) Axegrinder

Roland (Brewmaster) Winemaker

 

People can also be named for the place they live:

First Name and Surname

Jon Greenwood

Alex Steephill

Lara Cragbottom

Beulah Wortbog

 

Yet other characters have more obscure names such as Mark Twain, the renowned author and humourist. He was born Samuel Clemens but used the pen-name Mark Twain, which means the second line on the side of the riverboat, which Twain worked on as a young man. The second line (mark) was 12’ and the safe depth mark for the boat.

So have fun with naming your characters. A brainstorming session with friends could generate a lot of names for you – and a lot of beverages snorting out of the nose (always a good party trick). What else could influence your characters’ names?

 

What name would you give the character in the title picture?

Leave a comment. I’d love to know what name you came up with.

Till next time, I hope you are blessed,

Lynne

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