1. peachalulu
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    peachalulu Contributing Member Reviewer Contributor

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    When you think a characters name is sexy and nobody else does

    Discussion in 'Character Development' started by peachalulu, May 24, 2012.

    Anyone ever caved to the masses concerning a characters name? I've named one of my hunks Edgar and gotten some yuks ( and yucks ) about it.
     
  2. Cogito
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    Cogito Former Mod, Retired Supporter Contributor

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    Nope. Stick to your guns. You can't please everyone, and you'll drive yourself ibbidee ibbidee ibbidee nuts trying.

    EDIT: On the other hand, if I had named a romantic character Adolph, I might listen to the reactions and make the change. :)
     
  3. Mckk
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    Mckk Moderator Staff Supporter Contributor

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    I did change my MC from Heinrich to Will, because every single friend I asked hated the name Heinrich - even the one German girl I asked didn't like it (so it's not only national prejudices speaking). She informed me that Heinrich sounds like someone's grandfather :(

    It's a pity, cus I actually quite like the name Heinrich. But then again, I'm not really one of those writers who spend hours and hours on a character name - I tend to simply choose whatever sounds good to me, so changing a name wasn't too emotional for me. I did refer to my MC as Heinrich for a long time still afterwards, but mostly only because I'd changed it to Josh - to please the masses - and I actually didn't like the name Josh.

    And maybe because I didn't like the name Josh, soon I wrote my MC into this whiney, emo, ungrateful bastard who hated everyone and is spiteful and bitter and generally a horrible, immature jerk.

    Which is how he got his third transformation and became Will. A name I actually liked. That's the important thing I think - YOU must like it as the author. Please the masses if you want, but the most important opinion is actually your own and no one else's!
     
  4. mammamaia
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    mammamaia nit-picker-in-chief Contributor

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    i'm sorta leaning toward what cog had to say on the matter in his first sentence, but 'edgar' is to me what 'adolph' is to him and really would not turn me on!... can't imagine why you'd think it's sexy... unless of course, you'd had a cosmic-class lover by that name... ;)
     
  5. Gonissa
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    Gonissa Contributing Member

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    Sexy is as sexy does. Names have little to do with it. Except for Adolph. That's a pretty unsexy name.
     
  6. Fivvle
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    Fivvle Contributing Member

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    Want to know a REALLY unsexy name? Englebert. Or Bartholomew.
     
  7. MissRis
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    MissRis Contributing Member

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    This might just be me, but Edgar seems really close to Edward ("Twilight"). I'd fear if you are writing any sort of YA paranormal romance then I would be weary of the potential comparison. I also think of King Lear. Edgar was the name of Gloucester's bastard son, but I don't know how many people would make that connection.

    I don't find the name particularly appealing, but that's just me. And that is solely on the name. It's going to be how the character is described and what they do to make them particularly attractive. I would have never thought Edward would have been a sexy name before Twilight. Now all I think is RPatz (Yum! Yum!)

    If you like it and find it fits, keep it. My MC's name is contentious and people love it or hate it. But it really doesn't change the reading experience for them. It's something they just get used to.
     
  8. Northern Phil
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    Northern Phil Active Member

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    What's wrong with Edgar, absolutly nothing I say.

    What you have to remember with a lot of names is they naturally get shortened.

    So Edgar would naturally become Ed. You could also use nicknames as a way to distingrish characters, for example his parents would call him Edgar, friends would call him Ed and really close friends who were being a bit playful could call him Eddy or even Eggy.

    Just think about it, ok.
     
  9. Cogito
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    Cogito Former Mod, Retired Supporter Contributor

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    So sayeth the Bard. Now THAT'S a name problem, to put matters in perspective.
     
  10. peachalulu
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    peachalulu Contributing Member Reviewer Contributor

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    I never thought of that! I picked out the name for a story I wrote when I was thirteen - it's a mammoth surreal epic that's been put on the back burner for now. I got the name from Wuthering Heights cause I thought it had tremendous sex appeal - especially when you say it - Edgrrrrr.
    Good suggestions! But I hate using nicknames. I think it comes from the inadvertent buffonery caused by some action novels I read - Each character seemed to have six different names -first name , last name , army title , lovey-dove endearment , nick name , code name , I could never keep them straight.
     
  11. madhoca
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    madhoca Contributing Member Contributor

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    When I needed a good male lead's name a while back, I Googled 'what makes a name sexy' and turned up some research from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Apparently vowel sound is important, with (for men's names) a front vowel sound, like the 'e' in Edward, or the 'a' in Matt. Your name, Edgar, was actually on the list of sexy men's names, so obviously the researchers agreed with you! For what it's worth, I don't think it's yuck, I think it could work. In fact, I can feel it growing on me...
     
  12. kamikazepilot42
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    kamikazepilot42 Member

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    I'm not sure how to feel about this.

    Sincerely,
    Josh
     
  13. ithestargazer
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    ithestargazer Active Member

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    Interesting thread. I don't mind Edgar but it does bring to mind J. Edgar Hoover. That's the thing with names. Some of them become so ingrained in your mind as being related to a celebrity or a famous person in history (like the unfortunately unsexy Adolph) that they take on certain connotations.

    It's impossible to please everyone so I think it comes down to what name you envision for your character.
     
  14. Fivvle
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    Fivvle Contributing Member

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    Well, the name "Edgar" reminds me of the butler in Aristocats. Anybody seen that movie? Well anyway, that butler was sexy as hell. Another good one would be Humperdinck, you know, from the princess bride. His curls... were magnificient - and only became accentuated in their beauty by his name.... Humperdinck.
     
  15. The Blood Countess
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    The Blood Countess Member

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    I'm a sucker for foreign names. I remember reading a story in the ninth grade to where a major character was named Hasheem. A girl sitting a few seats down from me turned to her friend and said, "Ew, the hell kind of name is that?" I myself enjoyed the rhythm. Anything containing the high "i's"(sounds like the double E's in the word "see"), the sound of "th" and the sound of "sh" steals my attention. I once used the name "Bathsheba" in a short story for a school writing contest and my friend thought it was the strangest thing she had ever heard. I recall her saying it sounded "Grandma-ish".

    Needless to say, my taste in names is seen as distasteful. I'm sure I'll see a few icks from readers.

    Some of my favorites: Nicolae, Cleo(Greek male's name), Nicu, Ector, Blithe, Mikha, Adhira, Lecter, etc.

    They aren't half bad. c:
     
  16. chicagoliz
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    chicagoliz Contributing Member Contributor

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    I don't think it's the name that makes a character sexy. It's his personality, actions, thoughts, feelings, etc. Make the character sexy and the name will become sexy.
     

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