BioBooksAwardsComing NextContactBlogFun StuffHome

Thursday, September 18, 2014


I always seem to see tweets and retweets to blog posts where other writers talk about character names. And every time I've clicked through, I end up amazed that these authors all mention choosing their characters' names. Am I the only one who doesn't get to pick?

That might sound like a complaint. Believe me, it's not. I'm happy that I don't have to pick character names. The one time I got stuck with that (and it was only one time for one character), it was torturous. How did I know I had the right name for her? What if I chose the wrong one and her character doesn't come alive for me? With these worries, I ended up spending week after week looking at thousands and thousands of names.

But seeing all these blog posts where the authors pick the names just makes me curious. Are there other authors in the same boat as I am? Does anyone else have the character come in and say their name?

With that one exception I mentioned above, this is how it always happens for me. The characters tell me who they are. Oh, sure, sometimes I'll get a vague "My name starts with an R," but they still ultimately say, "yep, that's it" when I finally stumble across the right one. I appreciate that confirmation.

I've had characters choose names that I don't like. I used to argue with them, but I don't any longer. They always get their way and it just wastes time.