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Name Finding Tips

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Sun Sep 18, 2011 5:11 pm
Adriana says...

Well, usually the names just appear in my mind, totally without explanation. But when I can't decide I look at those baby names sites.
My favourite is
The site is all written in Portuguese, so even if you need any help you can e-mail me or something...
(The first thing to do is click in the "lista de nomes" box)
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it, but it's also true that we don't know what we've been
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Mon Sep 26, 2011 1:53 pm
quaintrelle says...

Great! You know in writing a lot of stories, you should have a lot of names stocked n your mind. Haha. So I literally write the names I like and randomly thought about and keep them for future purposes :)
khalepa ta kala.

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Sat Oct 08, 2011 5:27 am
amygabb says...

I look up the top ten most popular names in the year my character would have been born --- yes, I know it involves some math. I find that the names are more realistic that way. Of course, disregard this if you are writing futuristic stories... :shock:
Life is not about how you sing in the sun, it is about how you dance in the rain.

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Sun Oct 09, 2011 9:15 am
Niebla says...

If I can't decide on a name, I look on baby name sites or flick through the phone book (what else? :wink: )

I usually struggle with last names more, so if I have a first name, I'll use a random last name generator online. You can type in the name and each time you press a button it will generate a last name after the first name- it's really helpful because they're always quite random and unique and you can see how well the full name fits together.

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Tue Oct 11, 2011 11:09 pm
tinny says...

I use a tip that I picked up on from No Plot? No Problem!, which is to harvest names from spam email. In my junkbox at the moment I have a Lyn Susannah.
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Wed Nov 16, 2011 4:07 pm
Omnom says...

LOL if you don't wanna do a website, just do random stuff like sounding out random things or do something like throw a spoon down stairs and see what sounds it makes, that is usually what I do.
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Thu Jan 05, 2012 7:08 pm
ArahAkachi1 says...

This may not help, but I usually just put a single letter and then start adding random letters until they make since. One of my character's name in my novel is Valkaryot. So try that if you'd like.
Writing your name can lead to writing sentences. And then the next thing you'll be doing is writing paragraphs, and then books. And then you'll be in as much trouble as I am!

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Mon Jan 21, 2013 7:50 pm
BrooklynWriter says...

I usually like a name that means something about my character, so I Google "Names that mean..." And results from Yahoo answers are the most helpful.

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Fri Mar 15, 2013 3:34 am
Cspr says...

My two favorite sites? Behind the Name and its sister, Behind the Surname. Both are awesome. They have lists of most popular names by year, names from around the globe, etymology explanations, etc. Their links sections is awesome, too. The Medieval Names Archive is particularly awesome, and Encyclopedia Mythica is pretty addictive.

I tend to choose names that 'suit' my characters, dictated by (1) their country of origin or their parents country of origin (be it real or fantastic), (2) meanings, and (3) what sounds right.
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Tue Apr 02, 2013 12:15 pm
Amily says...

I don't like to think over this issue for too long. Frequently, I take the names from the circle of people I know, taking into considerations the associations raising inside of me when hearing the name.

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Sun Apr 07, 2013 11:03 pm
bashland says...

I usually use I peruse what I want to the name to mean, and pick accordingly.
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Mon May 27, 2013 6:10 pm
RayRayxxx says...

Hey, it sounds strange but baby name websites usually do the trick. Try
they're good as they categorize their names into different sections and it's good if your looking for unusual names.
Another thing you can try is searching "names that mean..." into Google. For example, if your character's distinctive feature was her beauty you could search "names that mean beautiful".
Hope that helps xxx

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Mon Jun 24, 2013 2:41 am
SushiSashimi333 says...

I just read a bunch on manga and when I find a name that I like I make sure to make a note about it on my computer. Sometimes I look online, I shall definitely be adding this page as one of my sources.

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Wed Jul 10, 2013 1:40 pm
StoneHeart says...

I have TWO ways of getting names!

If I need a real, human, already in use name then I go to the credits of a movie. I'm never disappointed.

If I need a fantasy name then I throw random words together and then narrow down my ideas.
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We are masters of our silences, and slaves of our words

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Wed Aug 07, 2013 7:10 pm
ShadowVyper says...

The main genre I write in is fantasy, so what I generally do is take a name idea I find from here, and rip it apart and rearrange it, until I find a name that I like.

I read (some) of Tolkien's Silmarillion, and found that using things like: Rond, bor, lian, and dior, as prefixes/suffixes are incredibly handy. Thus, my characters Myrond and Liandior were easily named, but still have unique names. I sometimes take names I find in that generator, and add these suffixes to them.

Sometimes I just take 'real' names, and play around with the spelling, swapping out random letters until I get a spelling/pronunciation I like. I wanted a character named Patrick, but his name looked out of place, in my fantasy novel, so I played with it until it evolved into Patrikk. Same with my Will getting dubbed Wylsim-- similar, but more fantasy-ish.

This site is my best friend, when it comes to last names. It adjusts the last names it suggests, depending on what you put in as a first name-- so you don't end up getting a suggestion for Zynyk Smith. Elsewhere on that site is a generator for first name suggestions-- which I also use quite a bit. They're far, far, more normal than that first site-- while still (mostly) unique.
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