1. fantasywriter
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    fantasywriter Contributing Member

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    The Name That Fits

    Discussion in 'Character Development' started by fantasywriter, Jan 11, 2009.

    I'm beginning my first Sci-Fi story, and I'm having trouble with the names. I feel bad for starting another name thread, but the Ultimate Name Thread really isn't working for me. :)

    I thought I'd go with more modern American names for some reason. I don't know if that's a good idea for Sci-Fi, but I came up with a few names anyways. Now I'm just struggling to find the perfect name. I thought I'd ask your opinions, just to see if I was heading in the right direction. So, let's see. . . .

    I've got an 18 year old male. He is adventurous, brave, quick-tempered, and hard headed. Here are some names that I feel may go well with his personality based upon the way they sound:

    First Names:
    Christian
    Ryder
    Pax
    Holden

    Last Names:
    Willis
    Miles
    Ryder
    Holden

    And I have a 25 - 30 year old who is disciplined, wise, cautious, and tough.

    First Names:
    Carter
    Ian
    Jamison

    I'm settled that his last name will be Hawke.

    Any opinions would be greatly appreciated, and if you'd like to request a name for me, that would be helpful too!
     
  2. Leaka
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    Leaka Creative Mettle

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    Christian Ryder <----Sounds kick butt

    Pax Holden <---Sounds nerdy and intelligent

    Ryder Willis<----Sounds cool

    Jamison Hawke<---They click and sound awesome together
    :)


    I always like the name Jalias for sci-fi.
    Jalias is pronounced Jai-llis, so like saying Jail with a lis at the end.

    Hope I helped in some way or another.
     
  3. Etan Isar
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    Etan Isar Contributing Member Contributor

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    Fore the second character, Ian Hawke has the best sound in my opinion. The other names seem a lot like surnames, and imo, don't fit quite as nicely as Ian.

    On the first, I can't say I liked any of the first names in particular: they remind me of action hero names except for Holden which I'm biased against because I hate CitR. Willis is my favorite of the last names. The others seem oft-used, and "ryder" is the last name of several characters from various action novels. But that's just my opinion, greatly colored by my various biases. None of those names are necessarily inappropriate for Sc-Fi.
     
  4. Leaka
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    Leaka Creative Mettle

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    Oh and:

    Lexus

    Lexi

    Lex


    Uhioh [pronounced U-a like saying the alphabet A,B,C,D....so its just U A]

    Tutsuo[pronounced Tut-sue-o]

    Xander

    Xeres

    Xerin

    Xavier
     
  5. Rei
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    Rei Contributing Member Contributor

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    Nothing wrong with using generic American names as long as it's realistic.

    On the thought of using the perfect name that fits the characters, I refer you to Gundam Wing. One of the characters in that show grew up essentially without a name and then took a code name for the mission that the show was about. In one of the very last scenes he says "I have once again become nameless." His friends tell him he should keep the name he adopted because, "Names are things other people give you, so there is no point wasting time worrying." If it's a believable choice, it's not a bad one.
     
  6. Cady36
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    Cady36 Member

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    I like "Pax Ryder". I found it interesting that almost all of your first names were also last names, and vice versa.

    I really like "Ian Hawke" but he sounds like a superhero or spy to me ("Bond...James Bond") rather than wise and cautious. Jamison Hawke is good, but sounds sort of swashbuckling, so I guess I'd have to go with Carter.

    Actually, though, most of those names didn't seem American to me - lol - they seemed like they would be from the UK, or possibly from Canada. That's just me, though :)

    Cady
     
  7. wonderxwhy
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    wonderxwhy Member

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    Hahah, if you want to be semi-ironic: use Pax. Considering your guy is quick tempered and hardheaded, and Pax means "peace." (In latin, I believe).

    If you want him to be associated with the tempermental guy in The Catcher in the Rye, name him Holden, because thats the name of the main character in that book. It's quite fitting actually...

    Personally, I like either Holden Ryder or Christian Ryder.
    It sounds very action-movie-esque. Which fits your "brave, adventurous" personality trait.

    Oh and I definately like Jamison Hawke. It sounds pretty insightful to me.
     
  8. Rei
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    Rei Contributing Member Contributor

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    What's the difference between a Canadian and American name? We're both countries that were built on imigration from all over the rest of the world. Besides, technically there are very few actual "American" names unless you consider First Nations peoples.
     
  9. Cady36
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    Cady36 Member

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    Well, she said she was going for "more modern American names" and then gave that list, so I am using her term.

    From the UK, I've met 1 Christian, 2 Miles and at least 4 Ians (and none from the rest of the list)

    From Canada, I've met 1 Christian, 2 Ians, 1 Holden, 1 Carter and 1 Miles. I also know more people in Canada with French names than I do in the U.S.

    In the U.S. I've met 1 Christian and 2 Willis's (my ex brother-in-law and his father)

    Never known anybody with the names Jamison (unless you're talkin' whiskey ;), Pax, or Ryder.

    Another example of how names differ between the U.S. and the UK: I've known one "Jack" in the U.S. I've met 3 from the UK and 2 from Canada, that I can think of off the top of my head. I know we're talking adults, but Jack is the most popular new boys name in the UK (has been for a couple of years, apparently.) In the U.S. "Jack" as a baby name is number 38.

    If I started reading a book where the characters were named Miles, Ian and Christian, I would usually assume it was British until I hit the word "color" instead of "colour".

    The same can be said for me of some women's names, e.g. Megan, Priscilla etc. (never personally met an American Priscilla).

    So if she's going for modern American names, well, I have met more people with those names in the UK and Canada then I have in the US, and I've met a lot more people in the U.S. And I see similar patterns in the names people I've met from Canada as I have in the UK. So yep, they strike me as UK names, or perhaps Canada.

    *shrug*

    Cady

    P.S. The other thing that hit me as not sounding very American was "Hawke" but I love that last name, so who cares? lol

    Edit: Really, how common a name might be depends on how far in the future this scifi story is set. Assuming that it is 18 years in the future, and checking the Social Security name database for popular names right now, so the kid would be 18 in 18 years (These are given Name, Ranking for that year, number of people named that out of 100000):

    Ryder #217 79.5/100000
    Holden #382 36.4/100000
    Paxton (no Pax) #560 20.8/100000
    Christian #22 634.5/100000

    Assuming your older guy is 10 years older:

    Ian #70 260.9/100000
    Carter #204 77.2/100000
    Jamison #666 12.3/100000 ("Romeo" was more popular! lol..."Elvis' was #726. Poor kids.)

    The SS Name database allows you to look up name popularity in the U.S. by year; it's really handy (so you're not naming someone in an historical novel a name that didn't exist back then, for example.) http://www.ssa.gov/OACT/babynames/

    But when it gets down to it, unless it *is* set 18 years in the future the names could be anything. Heck who knows, maybe in 100 years, modern boys names will be "Letterman", "Ss2350" and "Harry" :p

    C.
     
  10. fantasywriter
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    fantasywriter Contributing Member

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    Thanks for the opinions, everyone!

    I'm really leaning towards either Christian Ryder or Pax Ryder for the younger guy and either Ian Hawke or Carter Hawke for the older one.

    Actually, I came up with that one myself. lol

    The only reason I said they were modern american-ish (lol) is because I took those names from the most popular baby names of 2008 list on babynames.com :)
     
  11. Chief_Rocka
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    Chief_Rocka New Member

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    My exact feelings.
     
  12. Rei
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    Rei Contributing Member Contributor

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    That's who you've met. But ever heard of the Acadians? Lots of French names in New Orleans.
     
  13. Leaka
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    Leaka Creative Mettle

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    :)
    Now we are kick butt.
     
  14. Cady36
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    Cady36 Member

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    That's a good site. The one problem with their "popularity" lists is that it doesn't have anything to do with what kids were actually named - lol. They derive their popularity lists from lists that their members create of their favorite names. (That's why I gave the link to Social Security.)

    According to that site, Aidan (or some variation thereof) has been the most popular baby boy name for the last six years running. According to the Social Security administration (which hasn't compiled 2008 yet), the highest Aidan has ever ranked in that time is 39th in 2003. (In 2007 it was 54th as Aidan, 306th Adan, 772nd Aedan and 598th Aydan).

    However, since the babynames.com is simply a list of names people *like* and are considering, I find the names a lot more interesting than what people are actually naming their kidlets!

    I do like your narrowed down list of names!

    Cady
     
  15. Cady36
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    Cady36 Member

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    Yes. My husband has an Acadian ancestor from New Brunswick :)

    Fantasywriter asked:
    I said:
    I'm not sure what else I'm supposed to base an opinion about how a group of names sound to me personally other than on my personal experience. ;)

    But after you questioned me the first time, and after I answered, I did stop and do some research. (Hence the edit, with the SS info and the popularity of those names). e.g. in 2007 "Carter" was the #33 name in British Columbia, #20 in Alberta, #18 in Nova Scotia. In 2007 in the U.S. it was number 80.

    If asked for an opinion about something, I'm going to base it on my personal experience, especially if it's something as subjective as "do these names work for these characters?" with the statement that she was going for modernish American names.

    I don't know. They're names. It's a fiction story. lol.

    Look, I get the impression I offended you in some way, and whatever it was, I apologize.

    Cady
     
  16. Atari
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    Atari Active Member

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    I like the names Trigger, Blaze, Isaac, Sky, and Jaster.
    Leaka's suggestions are heroic, though.
     

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