Friday, June 29, 2012

Creating My Fantasy Novel

I've been researching a 3rd W.I.P. the past several weeks. I have my outline, I've drawn my map, assigned climates and cultures to the separate peoples, created the religions, and many, many other details that go into world building. Now I need to choose some names for the main characters.

In the other two novels I am working on(books 1 and 2 of a trilogy), I used Old English, Danish, and Russian for character names. This time, some of my main characters are from a large island nation. So I am trying to decide between Egyptian  names or Indonesian. I don't necessarily match a type of culture(Middle Eastern) with the names of specific languages(Arabic) we know on Earth. So though my island might have a more Hawaiian feel, I don't want to use Hawaiian names. 

If it makes no sense to you, that's alright. This is my fantasy novel and one of the little idiosyncrasies I have. *grin*

So this made me wonder...How do YOU decide what types of names to use? Do you just pick random names you like or do you go with a similar language for all your names within each groupings of people you have? I'm getting close to actually beginning the writing process of creating this novel. (Research takes forever when I have so much fun doing it.) How long does research for a new novel generally take you?


Elise Fallson said...

For me, names are so important. They provide the reader with a lot of information and special care should be taken in choosing the right name. I settled on character names early on by scanning lists of baby names over the net. I thought it was pretty easy until a few months ago when I realized I had to change one of them. It was so hard changing one of my character's name after so long that I ended up blogged about it. Interestingly enough some people can continue working on their wip without proper character names and use for example, 'Mr. Bad Guy' as a temp name until they come up with something suitable. I can't do that. I have to have the name right away. One thing is for sure, if you have different nationalities in your new wip, you'll need names that make sense. Good luck with the research, it can be a lot of fun!(=

Jamie McHenry said...

Names are the toughest part for me. So tough, in fact, that I don't add them to the manuscript until around the fourth draft or so. Like you, I try to stick with names from a particular culture, but even then, matching the name to a character's traits isdifficult, so I make up a few here or there.

fairbetty said...

Ugh... names are the hardest part for me. I usually have one REALLY good character name and then a bunch of really uninspired ones. In my WIP I have a GREAT MC name, and one mc named for a friend who wanted to be included... and then I'm ... eh... not so attached to the other names. I spend a lot of time on fantasy names websites looking for something... anything... and not really finding what I want. Sigh.

Sabrina A. Fish said...

My MC's name was Luc for the longest time, despite the fact that my story is completely fantasy...meaning NO sci-fi elements, people would still compare it to Star Wars. So it had to go. I was sad about that, but I grown to love Ruark so much, I now can't imagine him as any other name.

Sabrina A. Fish said...

I go off instinct on this one. I look within the culture I want and will get that 'feeling' when it is the right name. And I have no idea for how else to explain it.

Thanks for stopping by, Jamie.

Sabrina A. Fish said...

I enjoy looking for names. Instinct is a big part of what I rely on for this. I hope the process gets easier for you, my dear.