Naming fiction characters – Are you stuck?

Did you ever start writing a story and just got lost in the flow of words? The story is all laid out in your mind and the scenes are coming out perfectly and then suddenly BAM! You have no idea who this character is, or what to name him?

Yesterday my article on how to name a fiction character was published on Conscious Talk Magazine, and I’m going to share it here with you.

Also, to those participating in the coming NaNoWriMo next month, here’s something that will help smooth the way for you.


Fiction Writing: How to choose fitting names for your characters

Giving the characters of your book fitting names is often a very frustrating process. One that, unfortunately, every writer has to go through. Imagine a nursery full of babies. All the countless names. Now imagine that nursery full of adolescents, children, elder men and women, throw in some pets. The writer will have to enter that nursery, clipboard and pen in hand….



23 Replies to “Naming fiction characters – Are you stuck?”

    1. As long as it works for you. but keep in mind that you have to give fitting names for each character, or explain why you gave the character a weird name. for example, in the article i talk about this guy named John who was born in japan. Isn’t it more fitting if i named him Hiroshi?

      Liked by 1 person

  1. Tiger Woods – a professional golfer (a wood is a type of golf club)
    Prince Fielder – a professional baseball player.
    Martin Short – an actor who is uncommonly short for a male.
    Thomas Crapper – a toilet manufacturer and promoter of the flush toilet.

    Liked by 2 people

  2. What a great idea-and so helpful! I have a problem sometimes of picking a name for a character and really identifying with that name, but then realizing that for some reason I need to change it. Perhaps it’s too similar to a character’s name in the book I recently read. Perhaps it’s too like the name of someone I know who might take offense. It’s very hard to let go of a name once I choose it. However, I get annoyed with authors who choose names for their characters that are similar, like they all start with the same letter. That can get confusing!

    Liked by 2 people

  3. Love the article. It’s so true, naming your characters is so difficult. I usually name them based on people I know and then change it as I go along. I agreed with what you wrote about naming two characters with similar names. I did that once, and it later confused the h#$k out of me.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Ugh! This is very helpful. The most annoying part of writing my book was naming the characters. You give some very good advice here. I’d add going to an online site for specific country/year to find accurate/appropriate names.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. My go-to for naming characters are Behind The figure and figure source. Personally, I do consume a portion of sport with this orbit of the written material unconscious process, but it can be slippery 😉


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