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January 27, 2014


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Mysti Berry

Scrivener makes it easy to create lists of all kinds of things--char. names, hair color and eye color (my favorite to change half-way through), and store it all in one "project."

The only problem is, I have to make sure my fiction writing doesn't get to be too much like technical writing, or my dialog turns into "click More...."


Good idea to keep a character list. I tend to gravitate toward similar sounding names, like those that end in the "ee" sound, i.e. Ashlee, Britney, and Casey. I also have to be careful that the name fits in with the age of the character. Google is great for finding names that were popular the year a character was born.


I can look back on historical records to get names appropriate to the time frame I write (1880s). The problem is, if I were to be truly "authentic," half of my male characters would be named "John" or "William," and half the women would be "Mary" or "Anna."
More about historical names of old tomorrow... :-)

Michael A. Black

Yikes,I pity those future writers who research what names were popular in our era. Can you imagine what they'll find? It's Apple and her other sister, Apple.

Margaret Lucke

Enjoyed your stories of suspects' names and aliases. Andronicus Roister is too good for you not to use it in a book sometime.

Naming characters is an art. Like you, I keep lists of all their names, carefully alphabetized. I keep thinking that one day I'll make a master list of all of the character names I've used, but that may be a bit too obsessive.

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