Namesss

Am I the only one who finds naming incredibly difficult?  I’ve gotten past naming people, mostly by combining character names from things I’ve read in the past, but I’m getting to the point where I need to name THINGS.  Like the nation I’ve created, and the states (counties? proviences? see my issue????) that make it up, and the cities within it, and even the things within it that I’ve made up that aren’t real. For example, there is magic in my book (THE DISCUSSION ON MY NERD-DOM HAS BEEN CLOSED), and the way the magical system works is that you extend your “self” (soul?) past your body and use it to impress your will onto the world around you.  You can even break off those pieces of your soul (thanks, J.K. Rowling!) and have them do your bidding while you go about your day.  But what are they called?  And is it a different name when they’re still connected to you than when you break them off?  This is why I’m a terrible writer – because I always run into questions about my own work that I don’t actually know the answer to.  Pout.

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3 thoughts on “Namesss

  1. As far as place names be they nations, cities, or any other subdivision you should probably (if you haven’t done so already) think about the type of places they are and who lives there and why(are they farmers? traders? are they “civilized”?, are they known for something in particular?, etc.). It seems like a great opportunity to build back-story and context. There are plenty of historic cultural pathways to mix and match if you wanted to use them as inspiration. But if you want to stay away from even the hint of any connection to reality then it really doesn’t matter as long as you have some kind of reasoning or thought pattern that the reader can easily key into to identify variations in place.

  2. Give things time, you cannot rush names and titles for things even though you may want to know them RIGHT NOW. I know it’s aggravating but sometimes I think as writers we don’t get things right away because we are not ready for them. Writing a character’s story is a commitment and you have to be ready for the long haul in the grueling, but amazing writing process. Don’t give up on naming things, but step back and focus on another aspect of the story for a while and when it’s right, you will know what to say, what to call people and places and things.

  3. Thanks to you both! Jesse, I’m definately going to spend some time in the coming days/weeks writing some history and geography information so I have a basis for my names and an understanding of how my country is going to work together. Moonstonemaiden, thanks for reminding me to take my time and not get so hung up on the little things…sometimes its physically painful for me to skip past a name or write in a filler…I feel like it needs to be perfect when it comes out of my head!

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