1. Lea`Brooks
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    Lea`Brooks Contributing Member Contributor

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    Struggling to name my MC

    Discussion in 'Character Development' started by Lea`Brooks, Jun 14, 2013.

    Hello all!

    So I've recently come up with a new novel idea. Turns out, I'm great at coming up with new ideas but horrible at executing them! lol Anyway. Normally, I do way too much research and not enough writing. So naming my characters is usually really easy because I have their entire past, present and future planned out. This time around, I'm determined to just write my first draft and not waste so much time researching and planning. So all I have on my current character is her past and partial future. So! I'm having a hard time naming her.

    It's a YA fantasy novel, as are all the stories I write, about a 18- or 19-year-old girl. Her parents were awful to her -- so awful, I'm debating whether or not to throw in a flashback where they tried to kill her when she was younger. So MC steals money from her parents, packs up, and runs away to Florida or California or somewhere beachy. She finds a slightly run-down apartment complex that is full of young men and women (21-25 mostly) who have also had a rough go at life. Their mutual struggles bond them together and make their relationships unbreakable. Being hardened by life, though, she still has this "whatever" attitude. When her friends go to parties, she seldom joins them. When a man shows interest in her, she completely shuts him down. She never leaves the complex except to work and likes it that way. The rent is also cheap and by the month, so she can pick up and leave whenever she needs to. Somewhere along her journey, she acquires a fake ID. The ID makes her 22-years-old with a completely different name. She uses her fake ID to land a job at a beach-side bar as a waitress, and it's there that she is found after both her parents die in an accident. It's this point that I start the story.

    So! I need a name for her. I care very little for her birth name, as that isn't the name she's going to go by. I figured I'd make it something childish and girly, like Katherine or Cynthia. lol It's her chosen name that I care more about. I don't want it to be too manly (i.e. Jaq or Billie) but it definitely needs some edge to it. I don't want it too girly (i.e. Anne or Haley) but it needs to read feminine. Tomboy-ish. And my brain just isn't working.

    The first name that popped into my head was Val as a nickname. But I HATE Valerie. So that name's out. lol So preferably a name with a nickname, short, sweet, to the point.


    Any ideas?
     
  2. peachalulu
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    peachalulu Contributing Member Reviewer Contributor

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    Madeline - Maddie
    Cassidy - Cass
    Caroline - Cary
    Amelia - Mia
    Felicity - Floss
    Alexandra - Lex
    Ashley - Lee
    Kimberly - Ember
    Hazel - Haze
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  3. chicagoliz
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    chicagoliz Contributing Member Contributor

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    You said you don't care about the birthname, only the nickname, and then said you thought of Val, but don't like Valerie. Well, if you want to go with Val, you could still go with that. Her birth name could be something like Valentina, or Valentine. Her parents could have named her something goofy like Valor or Valencia.
     
  4. Lea`Brooks
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    Lea`Brooks Contributing Member Contributor

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    Actually, what I'd originally planned to do was make her chosen name something ridiculous from a TV show or something. lol

    I have a scene in my head.. MC's parents die, right? Well some guys travel down to where she's living to find her and bring her back to claim her inheritance. But she doesn't want to go, so she runs from them. At some point, she has her fake ID out and the guys looking for her are nearby and snatch it from her hand. They read from it, her full (fake) chosen name and laugh at her. And she says, "So I like [insert tv show]. So what?"

    I pulled Val from Valyria of Game of Thrones. I thought of changing her name to Valyria Stark or Valyria Snow. I wanted it to come off as if she didn't have time to choose a really good name, so she said the first thing that came to mind, which happened to pull from her favorite book/tv show at the time. I worried though that it would push the boundaries of ridiculous. But now that it's typed out, I kinda really like it. lol
     
  5. huntsman40
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    huntsman40 Active Member

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    Firstly, a nickname doesn't have to have anything to do with a person’s name, so you can always give her a nickname that isn't related directly to her name.

    If you are stuck on names either Google girls names and see whole sites devoted to names of women, or if you still can't pick one just give your character any name and start writing. It's not like you can't use find and replace in Word to change it later when inspiration hits you.
     

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