1. du59
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    du59 New Member

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    Help With Character Names

    Discussion in 'Character Development' started by du59, Jul 10, 2013.

    I'm working on a piece right now and I need help with the names of one of my main characters. The piece is set in the near future following an apocalyptic scenario tears apart society. I can't decide how to name one of the characters. A basic description of him would be that he is a wanderer, traveling from the East Coast to the West. Along the way he helps people return to a stable way of life. The two names I have floating around are John Stacey and Kurt Winters. Kurt Winters sounds stronger and I could heleasily use that name to work in some dramatic flare, but John Stacey just has a certain ring to it. Any input anyone can give is greatly appreciated.
     
  2. chicagoliz
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    chicagoliz Contributing Member Contributor

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    Either one is fine. Whichever one you choose, he will grow into the name.
     
  3. Lea`Brooks
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    Lea`Brooks Contributing Member Contributor

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    Names are important to me when writing. If I get the name wrong, I can't progress until I find the right one. In the novel I'm currently in the middle of, I changed the main characters name probably a dozen times. So if you find the one you pick now isn't working, you can always change it.

    However, I like the name Kurt but I like the ring of John Stacey better. To me though, John is a softer name. So if you want more of a hard character, Kurt is better. But I don't really like Winters. It just doesn't vibe right to me. Nestor and Perry could work as a last name and they both mean "traveler" if that was something you were interested in. I always like throwing in hidden meaning behind my names. Makes it more important, I guess.


    Good luck!
     
  4. nhope
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    nhope Contributing Member Reviewer

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    Buy a baby names book or google the origin of the name you want. There are good books and sites that tell you names popular by era, area, along with the strength and meaning of names. You'll be amazed at what you learn.
     
  5. TerraIncognita
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    TerraIncognita Aggressively Nice Person Contributor

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    Play around with both names. Write a few scenes with each and see which one you feel suits the character best. :)
     
  6. maskedhero
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    maskedhero Active Member

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    Any name works, but you could try to infuse meaning through your names. That's why we had "Shepard" in Mass Effect, and other deliberate name choices.

    A John does imply an everyman though.
     
  7. Kita
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    Kita Senior Member

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    I find names to be crucial to my characters. They help give a certain impression I believe. Name generators can help as you can simply look for a name that appeals to you though I believe it helps for a characters name to have meaning. For example I have one called Bjorn. It's a norse name meaning bear. I chose it because he is a big guy who is more than capable in a fight. Also the norse name connects to his melee weapon which is a war axe at his waist. Out of the two you proposed, I personally prefer Kurt as a first name though I am unsure about the surname. John has it's merits too, being quite a common name it could fit a character fairly well.
     
  8. Rimuel
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    Rimuel Member

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    Just as someone else here had suggested, I'd look at a list of baby names and their meaning before deciding.
     
  9. Luna13
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    Luna13 Active Member

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    Play around with both names. If you decide you dislike it, you can always do a search/replace and change it.

    And remember, whichever name you choose will feel like the "right" name for you character to your readers, because it will be the only name for him they have ever known.

    You also shouldn't forget that a person's name is completely irrelevant to their personality. The only personality it reflects is that of the parents. If your character's parent are prominent in the story, keep that in mind and choose the name based off of what you think they would choose for their son.
     
  10. Thom
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    Thom Member

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    Seeing as he is a man willfully(?) helping others, John is softer and more friendly, and could have a biblical tone if you go that way.
     

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