Welcome back Everyone,
Last week I wrote a post that emphasized the importance of the name you choose for your characters. That post really sparked my creativity and had me asking: "What are the best ways to find great character names?"
Todays post will go over my top five character naming resources.
My first stop is always Pinterest.
There are just so many pins that focus on names, and though most of these have a focus on naming babies, they are still a great resource for writers.
After all, our characters are our babies.
Other languages are another great source to tap for great character names.
This is especially true if we are shaping our fantasy worlds after countries that already exist. In those cases searching for popular names from that country will reveal some awesome choices we might not have already considered.
But that's not the only way to use names from other countries.
All countries have beautiful and fascinating names that hold secret meanings. A quick google search of the characteristics we'd like the name to imply, such as strong queen or coward, will help us discover endless possibilities.
BABY NAMING BOOKS
Mom's love spending weeks looking for the perfect baby name. Publishers know this and are always willing to provide some excellent books filled with name ideas. The coolest thing about these is that all of the work on finding out what the names mean have already been done for us.
Writers can just collect a few and have a library of names to work with.
Have you ever been driving and spotted a street sign with the coolest name. Snag it and use it for your WIP.
I use this method a lot, though I tend to use it more when I am trying to find good names for places; such as cities, rivers, and major landmarks of my fictional world.
Another method, though perhaps a bit "out there" compared to the others, is to look through cemeteries for name ideas. I heard about this method through the writer grapevine and haven't had the chance to use it yet, but I can see the potential. Especially for those who write historical fiction. Finding a cemetery with people buried in a certain time period might be a bit harder than it sounds but it could lead to some very authentic names.
The number of ways to find great names for characters is probably as infinite as the number of writers in the world. So, if these methods don't work for you, don't sweat it. I'm sure you'll be able to find the perfect name for your characters with one of the many resources out there.
What is your favorite way to find great character names? Have you tried any of the above sources?
I'd love to hear about it in the comments!