Juin Charnell

Naming characters

If you’re like me, sometimes a characters name will come to you easily. It fits like a glove and you know it’s the right name. But what happens when you have a large cast of characters and you don’t want to use a friends name, even if nothing “bad” happens to him/her.
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What I do and I’ve never run into a situation where I’m stumped for names any longer is to save obits. I know it sounds kind of morbid at first. But I keep a running list of names from the obit section. I reassign the first and last names of course. But I have an endless supply of names. I do not keep the pictures, because I am deciding what my characters look like.
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I know some people use baby books. But this didn’t work for me because it only list first names. With my method you also have last names.
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And to take it a step further, I use a birth-date and astrological book to make sure that some character traits are really in line with the birth-date I give a character. Can have a character with a birthday in July become a super talkative Cancer or a character with a June birth-date as a stubbornly introverted Gemini. Those seem like minor things especially if you are writing a character with a specific birthday that is part of the story but the person who has that birthday or studies astrology sees it, they will think you are less than authentic with other parts of your story where you want their trust.
Happy writing.

Category: writing

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