Friday, February 10, 2012

Blankity Blank Blank

How do you name your cities? Your world? Your....everything?

I'm working on building my fantasy world. And yes, it makes me feel Oh, So Powerful. Some might say, however, that I'm a tad bit behind since I'm on, mmmm....revision #4? And I don't have the world completely pegged down. I know, right? How can I not have thought of these things, yet?

Well, I know the story. I have a semi-good (read really really horrible) draft done.  

And I need more names. Cities, creatures, forests, landmarks, people, etc. I've only just barely named all of the different magics. (I know....that only makes sense to me. Magics? Plural? Yeah....I've come up with a really awesome magic system. At least, I like to think so!)

I'm curious what others do you name things? Do you pick a name out of the air that you fancy? Do you flip through a baby name book, close your eyes and point? Do you research on-line? Ask your psychic? Use the next word said on TV? That could make for some unusual names..... "Hello, my name is The Clapper." or "Look there, it's Chia Pet Forest." or even, "Say now, is that creature over there a Snuggie?"

"Ahhhhhhhh! It's a Blue Snuggie of Death! The creatures that only attack humans who have completely given up and decided to go ahead and look like their couch! Run for your life!!!"

It's safe to say I will not use that method for naming things.

Or maybe you use Name Generators? After consulting this site, it looks like my villain should be named Gustave de Wynter. Okay. I already have my villian's name. I think.  But, I also learned I should start going by the trendy name, Rhiatany. Interesting.

So, anywho, I've left a lot of things blank in my manuscript. Or, well, no...I don't usually leave them blank. But I'll fill them in with things like BIG CITY. That's original, right? 

Or today as I wrote a scene where the MC knows what the original plan was and he needs to share it, I typed this...

{okay….here we need to put The Plan Obsidian had for Jasper…what is it? I don’t know, but I should probably figure it out at some point…}

I'm not sure why I put "we need to". Apparently there's more than just me in this head of mine. Hmmmm....that would explain some things.

heh heh {awkward laughter}

So, what do you do? How do you find the perfect names? 


  1. Hello, I'm a fellow Campaigner. I sometimes find great names in the word verification gadgets on blogs ;-) Other than that, it's up to my Muse. She usually knows quite well who she wants a character to be.

  2. I base my worlds on other cultures and use words from whatever the language of that culture is using a dictionary of the language and looking up the names for words like forest or lake or witch or warrior prince and using that word. Makes it easier to come up with names.

  3. Isn't lots of your world built around stones? Maybe look at the Latin names of the stones or colors in another language.

    Maybe this is why I haven't returned to my fantasy project yet...

  4. *Stopping by from the Campaign to say 'hi'!
    I find my names using online name sites, and my kids' yearbooks (changing them around before I use them, of course!) Also, I use the phone book a lot for last names.