Writing Journey #4- Changing Names

A LONG, LONG TIME ago, in a galaxy not unlike our own, kind of faraway, I wrote a story that I never finished. I had the idea of a three novel trilogy. I wrote and finished the first two books, and by the time I got to the final installment of the series, I was burned out. That, and I felt like it wasn’t going the right direction. I decided to set it aside for a few years. Life went on, and I slowly started to rework the ideas. It’s come so far that the books I had intended to write have evolved into something that hardly resembles my original idea.

I LIKE TO THINK that it’s been growing and maturing into something more meaningful, and less cliche. It’s a fantasy story. Originally, just your standard fantasy, where a group gets together to fight evil. There were elves, and knights, and kings, and magic. But I wanted to change it up, and do something different, since the fantasy genre has already been done to perfection by the likes of J.RR. Tolkien and J.K. Rowling.

WHEN I ORIGINALLY came up with names for my characters, I pulled ideas from whatever I thought sounded cool. I didn’t give any thought to race or location, or if a certain people had names that went together. I just thought that if it sounded cool, it worked! Never mind that two characters in a single clan or tribe were named Jeff and Ragnarok. Those weren’t actual names that I used, but you get the idea.

I NOW FEEL THAT names should have the same idea, the same context, as the rest. They should sound like they belong in the same world, and occupy the same space, to give them a sense of unified diversity. With my example of Jeff and Ragnarok, there wasn’t anything that made it feel like they even came from the same area. So, I decided to change that.

THUS, I DECIDED TO GO BACK and rework every single name in the book to fit a standard naming idea. I’ve been looking up various parts of the world, and have been trying to piece together names that fit in a global sense. Or something like that? Mainly, that they go together, and sound like they’re from the same neck of the woods.

LATELY, I’VE BEEN LOOKING up a lot of baby name websites. It may be odd to say, but I was able to focus in on a certain region, say Sottish or Spanish, and find names that all went together. I started cherry picking names that I felt were a good alternative, or similar, to ones that I had originally came up with.

NOW WHILE I WANTED names that did indeed sound like they were from a specific region, and belong to a certain group of people, I also wanted to keep my own twist. From what I’ve posted so far, my world is based on Writers, Artists, Creators, Chefs, and Musicians. So, I wanted the last names to reflect this. I thought it’d be pretty neat to have them named after something that has to do with their specific race. Hopefully, it comes out okay. I guess we’ll see if this writing journey ever ends with me ever finishing this.

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