I have recently run into a problem that is somewhat progress-stopping. I have run out of names.
See, I’ve got these rules when I name characters. They have to be A) not the name of any major character in one of my fandoms, B) Not the name of someone I know actually in real life (to make sure if anyone ever reads what I’ve written, they don’t get offended), and C) Easily pronounceable, and D) Not a name I’ve used before. That cuts back on a lot of names. Like a lot a lot.
And I mean, I could use baby name websites. I like nameberry.
But still, I don’t like scrolling through lists on baby name websites. Baby name books, however…there’s just something ten times more satisfying about flipping pages than clicking on a link. Anyways, that’s what’s on my Christmas list. I actually think I freaked a couple of people out.
But I like names that have some depth to them, and bring an image to your mind when you read them. Take the MC of my NaNo novel, Skyler Fey Lockheart. Her first name is boyish and has a slightly more modern feel to it. Fey is short and has a more feminine feel to it. I got Lockheart from a SteamPunk name generator.
But when I combined those three names I got an image of someone. A girl. Slender and short, with slightly wavy chocolate-brown hair and green eyes. A slight temper, smart and outgoing. Not as ladylike as is proper in her time period.
Those are the names I look for. I can spend hours just writing out different combinations of names until I find the perfect one, the one that hits me in the face with an image, and immediately.
I had tried Skyler, Fey, and Lockheart in so many different combinations before I thought to put them together. But as soon as I did it felt right, and the image it brought to my mind was so startlingly clear I knew that that was the name I was going to use.
When naming go for the name that gives you an image. One that feels so right, so perfect, you don’t know how you didn’t think of it before. Bring up your favorite baby naming website or book, have a blank piece of paper and a sharpened pencil, and go for it!