1. The Byzantine Bandit
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    The Byzantine Bandit Member

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    I had an idea

    Discussion in 'General Writing' started by The Byzantine Bandit, Jun 1, 2013.

    For a story I'm writing, I wanted to name some of the characters after what they're supposed to represent. I want to make the names seem kind of Old Englishy/Germanic/you get the idea. If I look up the Old English for their defining characteristic on Wiktionary/Google/whatever, does that make me have to provide an acknowledgment? Thanks!
     
  2. Alesia
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    Alesia Pen names: AJ Connor, Carey Connolly Contributor

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    I don't think so because Old English is still English, therefore not copyrighted or owned.
     
  3. ProsonicLive
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    ProsonicLive Senior Member

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    no, names, even very old ones and their meanings are public domain.
     
  4. TerraIncognita
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    TerraIncognita Aggressively Nice Person Contributor

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    No you don't need to. As said before names of people are not copyrighted!
     
  5. Burlbird
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    Burlbird Contributing Member Contributor

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    Don't be so frightened! If you go through writing, as with anything else in life, in constant worry of consequences, you are wasting precious creative energy and time that is better spent on actual work. You want your antagonist to have eyes of your highschool crash - who gives a damn! Write it down! WHEN and IF you ever get to publish it, then worry about whether she's gonna get angry. And even if she does - it's an art form, not a personal attack!

    When it comes to acknowledging your sources - fiction is not an academic form - you don't need to make footnotes, endnotes, and the whole critical apparatus. It's always nice to acknowledge other people: but in the form of "Special thanks to XY" or "I've learned about this subject/this historic figure/this type of animal behavior/this football club from reading this book/talking to this guy/watching this film etc" It is NICE but it's not in any way OBLIGATORY! If someone gets angry because you used his words or his name on your story - he's a jackass - people should be happy they inspired somebody's work! And don't be AFRAID somebody would break into your computer, read your notes on your unfinished story - and take offense! - because he'd be an offender for breaking in in the first place :D
     

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