1. Lea`Brooks
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    Lea`Brooks Contributing Member Contributor

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    Character name help....

    Discussion in 'Character Development' started by Lea`Brooks, Mar 24, 2015.

    Do you think we could make a sticky thread for helping with naming characters? I always feel so silly making another thread just for one wee little question.


    Anyway. I'm writing a YA fantasy novel. Some of my names are made up and a little strange (Dymnsi, Jolvis, Preithos, Arlynon) and others are really plain (Serenity, Lila, Naomi). Mostly, how they get their name depends on who they are and where they were born.

    I have two characters, twins, that I'm trying to name. The girl (born second) is named Echo. I absolutely love it. I think it fits her perfectly in every way. Now Echo, obviously, means something repeated. She was born second, the mother didn't know she was having twins, so she's an "echo" of the first child.

    But her bother, I'm struggling to name. I want his name to sound similar to hers, but still have a meaning related to who he is. I've come up with four options:

    Icha (pronounced itch-uh) means first born.
    Ichabod means happy, but I could call give him the nickname Icha and pronounce it ick-uh instead of itch-uh.
    Ochen (Ochin, Ochan, Ochun) means one of twins.
    And Ika (pronounced Ike-uh) means first.

    I love the meanings for all of them, but I also like how similar they sound to Echo, which is important to me. Echo and Icha, Echo and Ochen, Echo and Ika. They all look well together.

    A little about my male twin.. He's very stubborn. Kind of withdrawn, doesn't care about much, doesn't want to do much. Thinks his sister is annoying and dramatic. lol Basically a teenage boy. I haven't decided on his age yet, but he'll probably be close to 15.

    Any opinions? :) Thanks!
     
  2. peachalulu
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    peachalulu Contributing Member Reviewer Contributor

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    Hard to erase Ichabod Crane from mind. I remember a few years back I'd read a romance story in which a side character was called Kermit and couldn't stop the green frog from coming to mind.
    Ochen sounds interesting.
    Proteus also means first. Of course you'd be stuck with jokes of him being a pro - lol.
     
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  3. ZYX
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    ZYX Member

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    Icha and Echo look nice with the vCHv pattern, but the " ch " having a different sound kind of throws me off and readers may end up pronouncing it as Ika if it isn't explained. Ochen is cool. I like Ika best, I think it sounds best with Echo ( they're both two syllables with a K sound ) and it looks nice with her name as well.
     
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  4. AlannaHart
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    AlannaHart Contributing Member

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    Proto and echo?
     
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  5. Kirish
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    Kirish New Member

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    I'd go with Ika, just because of the pronounciation thing ZYX already mentioned.
    Ochen would be nice too but does it sound similar? I have never heard it so how is it pronounced? If the "ch" is similar to the one in "cheese", it would be hard to hear a connection between the two names. (Well, at least to my ear, how trustworthy is that?)

    By the way, I like the idea of "echo of the first child". It's very original but at the same time it does make sense. :)
     
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  6. Ivana
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    Ivana Contributing Member

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    If you want to relate to Greek mythology, I suggest the name Pan. From the Wiki: "... Longus’ tale of Pan chasing Echo’s secret voice across the mountains."
    She is also known to be in love with Narcissus, but his name is too long and too famous. :)
     
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  7. Lea`Brooks
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    Lea`Brooks Contributing Member Contributor

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    Honestly, I hate the pronunciation of Icha. I would much rather it be eye-kuh instead of itch-uh. Because I do love the look of Echo and Icha together. And if I knew people would pronounce it eye-kuh, I'd use it. But I've been really trying to avoid names that are too hard to pronounce.

    I don't really like the look of Ika, honestly. I just like the sound. Plus, Ika is technically a girl's name.. And now that I'm looking at it again, I think it may be too close to Ikea for my comfort.. lol

    Ochen, I'm starting to love. According to the website I found it on, it's pronounce "aw-chin." Which I hate. So I googled how to pronounce it, figured out it's also a Russian word and is pronounce "oh-chin." I would prefer "oak-in" because it feels better with Echo. But I still like it, either way. And yanno, if it ever gets published and people just start calling him "oak-in," maybe I'll just let them be incorrect. :p


    Thanks everyone! Your input helped me greatly.


    Also: I truly LOVE the idea of Proto and Pan. But I'm worried Proto is too futuristic sounding for my world (like proton or something). And I also loved Pan.. I'm a big greek mythology buff, so much of my story is influenced by it. And the boy I'm trying to name is a shapeshifter, so having the name of the god of flocks would be pretty awesome. But I still really wanted a name that sounded similar to Echo's. I even tried looking up names that CONTAINED Pan.. lol Cause I thought, maybe he could hate his name and go by Pan instead.. But it just doesn't work. :( Thanks for the ideas though, guys!
     
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  8. Catrin Lewis
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    Catrin Lewis Contributing Member Contributor

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    "Ochen" does seem to be the best of what you've explored above. Though see below.

    Because--- ouch!--- Icha and Ika make me think "Itchy" and "Icky." And "Ichabod" is actually Hebrew for "the Glory (of God) has departed." Not what you had in mind . . .

    In Russian the word "Очень" (Ochen) is an adverb meaning "very" or "very much." I suppose you could do something with that, but it might take some work.

    If you wanted to keep with the Greek and the birth order meaning, he could be called "Aechos" (Ήϰος), which means "a sound," pronounced "Ay-koss," in contrast to his sister's Echo (Ηϰώ), pronounced "E-koe." Though I like keeping the gutteral ch in Aechos, myself.

    (Note this isn't 100% linguistically correct: technically "Ηϰώ" should be pronounced "Ae-Choe". But I think it would be close enough for your purposes.)
     
    Last edited: Mar 29, 2015
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  9. Lea`Brooks
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    Lea`Brooks Contributing Member Contributor

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    Thank you so much! Aechos is so much better than Ochen. And, I have another character named Aeron so the "Ae" spelling is something I've already used, so it wouldn't look out of place. But Aeron is also a very minor character, who won't get mentioned very often, so I wouldn't have to worry about the reader confusing them. :D

    Thanks again. That was very helpful. :)
     
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  10. Catrin Lewis
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    Catrin Lewis Contributing Member Contributor

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    Yes, it's always so much fun to help other people with their writing and avoid tackling one's own . . .:supercheeky:
     
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  11. KaTrian
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    KaTrian A foolish little beast. Staff Supporter Contributor

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    Aecheos sounds like a sneeze to me 'cause my mind doesn't pronounce it Ay-koss. Although my Finnish-speaking part of the brain can also hear it as "Ae-koss," it's just that when I'm reading it in English, my brain stops pronouncing things as they're spelled and comes up with weird pronunciations.

    Would Echo and Eka be to close to one another? Maybe. And Eka might also look like a girl's name. Incidentally, Eka means 'first' in my native tongue.

    I used to know a horse, a mare, called Ika, which is why I wouldn't have used it. :D And maybe you're right, it's a bit like Ikea. :D
     
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  12. AlannaHart
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    AlannaHart Contributing Member

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    ένας means one. Enas and Echo?
     
  13. jannert
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    jannert Contributing Member Supporter Contributor

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    I liked Ochen when I first read it. I think it's a great name ...and while it will make sense paired with Echo, it will also stand out on the page. The two names are very different, when reading them. They might sound similar when saying them out loud, but this is a book, right?
     

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