1. InKd23

    InKd23 New Member

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    How to add the character name, if at all.

    Discussion in 'Character Development' started by InKd23, Jan 22, 2017.

    Hello all, I'm new here and to writing. Having not written a story or anything really substantial since school.

    I'm in the process of writing a short story from a 1st person point of view but can find no easy way of introducing the characters name.

    I was wondering if you have any tips on how to go about it, or whether the name needs to be included at all as it's more about the events and what happens to him as opposed to who he actually is.

    Thank you all for your time.

    Rich
     
  2. BayView

    BayView Huh. Interesting. Contributor

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    Is there dialogue? You can have another character call the MC by name. This could just be remembered dialogue, if your character is alone. (My mother always said, "Holden, slow down! The world isn't going anywhere." Little did she know.)

    What's your narrative voice? Sometimes first person narrators introduce themselves. (My name is Jane, and this is what happened to me the day the world ended.)

    When you read other short stories with first person narrators, how do those authors handle the MC name? You can get good ideas from them!
     
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  3. InKd23

    InKd23 New Member

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    Hi, thanks for taking the time to help!

    My narrative voice is like self reflection. Pretty much a thought process, almost like self discovery.

    Thoughts about what has happened, the timeline in which happened and consequences thereof and then the realisation of what has happened and why.

    There's no 'open' speech just him and his thoughts if that makes sense, which is why I'm struggling to work out how to go about it.

    Will take a shifty at some 1st person short stories and see what they can lend me though, thanks for the suggestion.
     
  4. sprirj

    sprirj Senior Member

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    Name tag in clothing... Diary....smart phone....note on fridge.....a nickname and the story behind it
     
  5. ChickenFreak

    ChickenFreak Contributor Contributor

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    When I was young, I thought that it was exciting to be named after the patriarch--I was Charles Bradford III, heir to the Bradford name. Then Charles Bradford II embezzled three-quarters of a million dollars from Gibbs Pharmaceutical and was whisked away to prison. That's when I started calling myself Chuck.
     
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  6. Iain Aschendale

    Iain Aschendale Aunt? Supporter Contributor

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    If your story is mostly internal, you may not need a character name at all. On the other hand, I have a habit of talking to myself when I'm alone, and even under my breath when with others and I make a mistake. In those conversations, I do tend to address myself in the third person, such as if I were to spill something while reaching for something else (which just happened a few minutes ago :( ) I might say, "Oh, nice job Iain, anything else you want to throw at the floor?". Of course, I don't call myself Iain when I'm cooking, but when I'm writing or editing, I will berate that name.
     
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  7. No Heart

    No Heart Member

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    I agree with Iain's point that a character name might not be necessary depending on the nature of the story. Sometimes it might even add to the point you're trying to get across if your main character remains unnamed (it can add an air of mystery or a sense of personal connection for the reader). Further, there might be circumstances in which adding a character name might detract from your story, especially if you need to break an otherwise consistent flow or tone to get the name in there.
     
  8. Shadowfax

    Shadowfax Contributor Contributor

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    What does it matter whether your MC has a name, or not?

    One first person short I wrote the MC was perceived as being male, while I had imagined her as being female. But, it didn't matter from the story perspective, the actions and thoughts could just as easily have been either sex. Unless there's something that you want to pin down by using a name (and lots of names are used almost interchangeably nowadays!) don't sweat it.
     
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  9. newjerseyrunner

    newjerseyrunner Contributor Contributor

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    Like iain, I constantly talk to myself in the third person, and I do it a lot when I'm trying to motivate myself or working out.

    My steady jog had become a labored shuffle. I felt the familiar burning in my quads as the gradient continued to climb. Come on, Alex. Push this hill. Left. Right. Left. Right. I raised my chin and focused on the top of the hill.
     
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