WriterDojo S3 Ep18: What’s In A Name? (The Importance of Character Names)

What’s in a name? Quite a bit, it turns out. This week, hosts/authors Steve Diamond and Larry Correia return to the studio to discuss the importance  of character names, some methods of selecting them, and some of their  favorite examples.

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This week’s episode is sponsored by Jack Wylder’s *An Illustrated Guide to AI Prompt Mastery*
The history of art is the history of civilization itself. With the rise of computers, it wasn’t long before humans began to explore using them to generate artwork. Using artificial intelligence to generate random artwork within set parameters began back in at least 1973 and has slowly been growing in complexity and ability. Recent breakthroughs have resulted in millions of eager users now racing to create their own art with this new technology. The ability to make anything can be daunting for new users, though. Where do you even start? How do you make stunning images like you see online? What inspirations do you draw from and how do you put them together? This book is intended to serve as a handy reference guide for users, both new and more experienced. An Illustrated Guide to AI Prompt Mastery is a valuable reference to this fascinating new field that is emerging.

Available on Amazon: https://amzn.to/3EXqrSd (affiliate link)

WriterDojo S3 Ep19: Third Person Narrative
WriterDojo S3 EP17: Intro To Marketing (with Jack Wylder)

5 thoughts on “WriterDojo S3 Ep18: What’s In A Name? (The Importance of Character Names)”

  1. Great ep as always, guys 🙂 And you’re quite correct, names are important, and often put across a great deal about a character before they ever open their mouth or take any actions.

    I’m planning out a sci-fi novel at the moment that’s going to be parts Noir, cyberpunk dystopia, and positive future sci-fi, where the main character is a detective working for a shady government entity on Mars named Harry Harkness.

    The general idea is that this area of Mars is a joyless hell-hole and Harry is a decent guy trying to do good in a bad world. But since family isn’t really a thing here (the state handles basically everything, which should be chilling enough by itself), his childhood was spent reading illicit banned comic books filled with heroes and adventure, and that’s how he ended up being a decent person in a world where decency ain’t much of a thing.

    Harry Harkness was the name of the comic book hero the protagonist most resonated with, hence why he calls himself that now.

    He also has a sister (not blood related) called Octavia, again from the comics, but I also wanted a name that put across some of the themes of the work, including loyalty, nobility, and humanity, which will be important in this book (look up Octavia the Younger for who this name is based on).

    Names are important 🙂

  2. Space Mutiny MST is a classic.

    What about theme naming in serious works? Is it too obviously “fictiony” thing for unrelated characters to have thematically related names?

  3. Dresden’s full name:
    Harry Blackstone Copperfield Dresden – shoutout to the fact his in story father was a sleight of hand magician, not a real magic user
    the Dresden part comes from the Dresden bombing

  4. I’m sure my ILOH thinks carefully about every story element; I’m just here to cite another guy’s work featuring such attention to detail!

    Years ago, Keith Richards was promoting his new book, “Vowel Movements” on NPR (which I listen to specifically for Click & Clack, the Tappet Brothers).
    Not only did he astonish me with the ability to be articulate, given his appetite for controlled substances, he revealed two details about how the Rolling Stones have been successful.
    First, he was focused. He said, “What I do, love, is write songs for Mick Jagger to sing.” I wish *I* had such a clear view of my job.
    Then, he told us all that he and Mick went over every phoneme, not just every word. If they’d used a different vocal in “Miss You” it would have tanked.

    Details matter!

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