Wednesday, October 17, 2012


As I described in a previous post, choosing a name for a character in a book requires care and consideration.   The name should be suitable to the age of the person and although there are more women engaged in what used to be traditionally male jobs (and that's a good thing!)   we've probably all met someone whose name did not seem suitable to their occupation or station in life.   Remember the Johnny Cash song, "A Boy Named Sue" and the reason the boy was given that name?  

Do we grow into and become our names?    Or does someone whose name seems wildly inappropriate to them  realize that at some point  and start to use their middle name or abbreviate their given name in some way, or adopt  nickname.

There's an interesting website for both authors looking for just the right name for a character and for parents searching for the name that will fulfill all their expectations even if their infant turns out quite differently.  Here's the link:  Baby Name Wizard .  For prospective parents there are search possibilities by first letter, by style, by era and even by location (in the U.S.)   For authors there's  a well-designed scrolling graph where you can search alphabetically by the decade going back a hundred years + and find the ranking of names.   It's one of those websites where an hour can go by before you realize it as you search your own name and that of your friends, relatives and enemies.

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