…or the elaborate one, depending on whether or not you like fancy names. That isn’t to say that fancy names can’t be short, but the ones that I usually think are fancy happen to be long. This can apply to first names, middle names, or surnames. For example, I would say Adaraschia is a fancy name (made up by a griffin and a dragon you must remember), but I wouldn’t say the same about my surname, Wingit. Even though it is pretty cool if I do say so myself, and I have been known to “wing it” in my approach sometimes;D

So, what makes us choose certain names for our characters? Marcellus Dragonquill is a name I chose for one of my characters. I chose Marcellus because I think it’s an alchemist name (this is probably influenced by Angie Sage’s Septimus Heap books) and the surname Dragonquill just had a pleasing combination of consonants and vowels. Another great name in that vein is Pendragon, which is very satisfying both to say and to write. Another one of my name creation examples is Hanovar. He is an elinvyr (a creature I made up when I was looking through one of John Howe’s art books and found a sketch of one of his zodiac themed creatures) which is basically a creature that looks human but has a deer skull on its head. I think I’ll make variations of the elinvyr. Yes… *whips out Awesome Note and quickly types in ideas* Now that that’s taken care of, I’ll finish with my explanation of Hanovar’s name. As far as I am aware, Hanovar is not an actual name. Wait… I’ll just check and see if it is. I must know!

*silence*

Well there’s a town called Hanover, but there’s nothing on “Hanovar”. Poor elinvyr.  Again, I shall be autocratic about it and declare that I shall get Hanovar’s story published so that it will all pop up at the top of a Google Search! I made the name up at the exact same time I thought up the name for his species. I was thinking of Howard as a name for him, but it seemed too…familiar. And seeing as my bad guy had a V in its name, I decided that his name must have a V in it, not a D. If I knew how my mind came up with these ideas, I’d probably make a name generator of some sort for people to use. As it is, I can only guess at how my mind works. Which might be a good thing, seeing as it would prevent me from possibly stopping good ideas from coming, which would be bad. Very bad.

The last name I have chosen to use would be Adackle. This character is not a made up creature or human. He’s an adlet, which I’ve mentioned in a post that will be released on Halloween in all likelihood. Once it’s posted, I’ll link to it in this post (if I remember). Adackle’s name…. well, I have to admit that if I think of it, I might have been thinking of the word “shackle”, the start of my own name, the beginning of adlet, and hackles. Don’t ask why, but they seemed to blend into the perfect name for a leader of an adlet pack. :D Especially seeing as adlets are cannibalistic, and let’s not forget vampiric. As a friend of mine said, (hi Damari! :D) they’re essentially werewolf vampires/vampiric werewolves. Which is, admittedly, amazing. If you’re into those sorts of myths of course.

So, how do you choose your character names? Through what arises at the moment, searching through a book of names, the meaning, or careful thought? I have to admit that I use a blend of those methods, and what just feels right as a name.

What approach(es) do you take to choosing character names?  I’d love to hear from you!  Leave your feedback and/or comments below – let’s get a dialog going, people! :D

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