Site Meter Vamps and Scamps: What's in a name?

Friday, October 28, 2005

What's in a name?

I've been trying to come up with names for characters in a new book and man is is hard. Names are important aren't they? I agonized over naming my children... never been particularly fond of my own name and I do think that my kids like their names well enough although I named my first son Ryan Michael (love that name) and I thought it was fairly uncommon and sheesh it turned out to be a mega popular name that year and I never did figure out why.

Tim is my second son's name...very traditional and yet I don't hear it much. It fits him...Timothy Patrick and he loves his Irish heritage so he likes his name, too. David Jay is my sixteen year old's name.... he was supposed to be called DJ but he didn't like that so he became Dave...not Davey and he doesn't like being called David. Very strong name...traditional and yet not too common so I'm happy with my choice although I told him once that I had thought about naming him Murphy after an uncle that passed away while just before he was born and he told me Murphy was soooo cool and was miffed that I hadn't name him that.

When I finally had a daughter I realy had a hard time. I knew with three brothers she would likely be rough and tumble and they boys were all athletes so I knew something too girly wouldn't fit and yet I finally had my girl so I didn't want a name that wasn't really feminine and since all the boys had Irish names I wanted to follow that theme. Cara really suits her (Irish for friend and my mom and I are such good friends that I so hope that Cara and I will have the same relationship) so the name was perfect. She seems to like it which is nice, too. The only downfall is everyone wants to spell it with a K.

So how do y'all feel about your name? Would you change your name if you could?

Do the names of characters in a book draw you into the story... make you have a better impression of who the characters are? Make you like them less or more?

Give me your thoughts!



Judy F said...

My given name is Judith Ann. YIKES. Don't really like it. Judith just isn't me just seems too formal, now Judy or Jude are ones I like. Funny thing is only my really close friends call me Jude and it bugs me if someone that isn't a close friend calls me Jude. Weird I know.

Now in a book names don't bother me to much unless I have no clue now to pronounce them. So if its a difficult name to pronounce when I read I just refer to them as the first initial. LOL

Anonymous said...

I think names should suit the character in a book. You cant give a wimpy name to strong personality character. I think that authors have an instict for that,so far I havent come across any character in a book that his or her name dont fit them like a tee.
Naliny I love my name now. I didnt when I was in school. I was target for many jokes because it was so hard for everyone to pronounce my name!They change it to mean ones! I like it now because its not very common,and love the meaning of it. Altought I love my nickname too. My brother gave it to me when he couldnt pronounce it as a baby! LOL To my family and close friends Im Niny but at work Im Naliny.

Lisa F. said...

My name is Lisa Joanne and I never really like the Joanne until my husband (then my fiance) would call me Lit'l Jo. I began to like it so much I kept it as my middle name instead of my maiden name when we married. We jokingly and lovingly call each other names all the time, especially when we're happy or exasperated with each other, like Abner or Bernard or he'll call me Gladys. When our middle child was 4 or 5 somebody asked him what his Daddy's name was and he very seriously said "Bernard". We still laugh about it.

Names are important, especially because kids can be cruel with their teasing, but more important to me is teaching a child that their name was picked out especially for them by the two people who will love them unconditionally and that their name is something to be proud of. Having a strong sense of who you are will go a long way towards healing the hurts of childhood teasing.

LuAnn McLane said...

Judy most of my closest friends now call me Lu istead of LuAnn. I had wanted the fun of picking out a cool pen name but my first editor talked me out of it and I suppose part of me wanted my real name on my books. If I get pubbed in YA fiction I will have a pen name... most likely Lucy Lane not only to keep my sexy stuff seperate but to have a fun sassy name that sounds younger. LOL

Annalee Blysse said...

Name is important to me... I remember some of the cool ones. I remember some of the ones that didn't sound quite right as I read better.

Stacy ~ said...

My given name is Stacy. Not even an exotic Anastasia - just Stacy, which most people spell as Stacey. I also get called Tracy a lot - lol. It's used by men and women, so I also get Mr. on some of my mail. I do get called Stace by a lot of people, and it doesn't bother me at all. I like it in the sense that it is not a common name - I'm usually the only Stacy anywhere I go.

I do have a close friend Cynthia and she hates being called Cindy, or even Cyn. I respect that. I think others should, too. After all, it is her name.

I believe names are really important and make us individual. I think people need that separate identity, so I'm not a big fan of people who name their kids Jr. I totally understand the reasoning, but I think it gets to be confusing. If the dad is John Michael, then if you want your son named after him, why not Michael John? Just my opinion, and hopefully not one that will offend.

I think there are a lot of great names out there that aren't used much. If I have kids, I would want them to have names that are not as common, but are also not so bizarre that they get made fun of.

Jana said...

My name is Jana & it's Hebrew in origin. It means "God's gracious gift" and since I was adopted, it has doubley spefial meaning. My parents didn't know it's meaning when they chose it, but that just means that Jana was SUPPOSED to be my name.
My daughter's name is Shandi. We wanted something special & different but not way out there. I think we chose well & she loves her name. It's a great conversation starter for her. People always want to know where it came from (for the record, it's a KISS song title) and yes, we have discovered it's even an drink in England. However, in name listings it's always listed as a boy's name, just spelled with a "y". She recently had to write a paper over her name & after reading it, she's happy she has a unique name. Of course it fits her, because she's unique too.