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Old 12-04-2011, 09:21 PM
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What's in a name?

It appears that everything is in a name. I keep trying to come up with a name but I never like any of the ones I develop. They just aren't right. So I need some help Coming up with a name. Which is not to be confused with needing help with how to make names. That I do well, I just don't like any that I come up with.

I have a short story to tell but every time I try to write it, I get caught afoul of the name for the protagonists. My protagonists are an entire race of fine sized fey-like creatures that are humanoid in form and come in five flavors. They are slightly elemental/magical and as such they can either control/create fire, water, air, earth, and force magic.

They are a bit warlike and so the human name for them will be "Thegs" after the word thegman which is an archaic word for hired soldier. Obviously, they wouldn't find the name endearing so anything along those lines wouldn't be helpful.

Thanks for all submissions and the member whose name I choose will receive credit for the name in the short story.
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Old 12-04-2011, 11:14 PM
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How about 'Vyf'? Rhymes with 'life'.

Its Afrikaans for "five", and its short like most words groups use to refer to themselves. I'd have it literally mean "people"
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Old 12-04-2011, 11:24 PM
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Ah...yes, it seems too few authors really take the excruciatingly tedious time to sift for the name. An objectively esthetically pleasing name which also suits a particular esthetic, uniquely apt and also fluent. Bold yet smooth, like a good cup of coffee!

Without knowing too much about what you're looking for, I might recommend some older fey-related terminology...pronounced 'she'sidhe, perhaps, or seelie? Or, playing on the elemental theme, they might all together be known as aethera?

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Old 12-04-2011, 11:49 PM
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Is there a particular naming convention you are using for the rest of your story? For example, are you drawing on Germanic roots, African roots, English roots, etc. primarily? And do you want the name chosen to have a linguistic justification, or simply a name that sounds appropriately fitting?
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Old 12-05-2011, 10:25 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Arucard View Post
Is there a particular naming convention you are using for the rest of your story? For example, are you drawing on Germanic roots, African roots, English roots, etc. primarily?
Not particularly. Germanic or English would be fine because I have a classic medieval setting in mind.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Arucard View Post
And do you want the name chosen to have a linguistic justification, or simply a name that sounds appropriately fitting?
I would like the first to be true but it's not necessary and the second is an absolute.

Thanks for the extra thoughts.
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Old 12-08-2011, 08:02 PM
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Names I'm making up from nothingVreen
Vintalis
Vrintalon
Vintalon

Vrelen
Vrellen
Hytthian


More to come....
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Old 01-02-2012, 12:28 PM
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It seems you have a taste for two and three syllable names whereas some people like their one syllable names quite a bit. Have you considered using a name that is more of a description? Ex: I once had a character named "Shadow-on-the-Sun".
Do you already have a specific role for this character, as the sound and feel of a name can often reinforce that idea?
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Old 01-03-2012, 07:52 AM
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Deerlinga
Welchnog
Tansice


No language backing (though they could probably be tweaked to get there), just some thoughts.
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Old 01-03-2012, 12:04 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MeekSandwich View Post
It seems you have a taste for two and three syllable names whereas some people like their one syllable names quite a bit. Have you considered using a name that is more of a description? Ex: I once had a character named "Shadow-on-the-Sun".
Do you already have a specific role for this character, as the sound and feel of a name can often reinforce that idea?
Human - That's what we have named ourselves. Even as I think about the structure of this word, it seems more strange. That's just a stray thought but it's relevant in some way.

What I'm trying to name isn't a character but instead a whole race. Now, I think it important to factor in that these creatures are human-like but not human. They would have evolved alongside humans but not dependent upon them. There may be some cross-over in regards to DnD and common languages but I had thought I'd divorce that a bit. So, any strange combination of phonetic syllables will work as long as they "roll off the tongue" while reading them. It's an aesthetic that I realize is different for each person but I don't trust my own a lot of times when I create new names.

What if we derived from a different real world language. Like Latin. Vegrandis populus - Tiny People. I like the Vegran portion. Maybe even the Vegra.
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Old 01-04-2012, 12:18 AM
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I was looking around for interesting inspiration for your name and ended up looking up the word "man" on wikipedia. This led me to the word "were", which also means man, and then eventually to the word aevum, described as having proto-Indo-European origins and having to do with time, generations, age, etc. Of the other forms of the word (plural, etc) most of them sounded like they would roll off the tongue well so perhaps it would be worth looking into (http://en.wiktionary.org/wiki/aevum
Perhaps also consider using part of a word (hu-man) in order to create your word. Perhaps ferun for a race considered similar to, but more savage than men. Maybe a name like this is merely what men call this other race. Perhaps it's this consideration that made me think that aevum (although I usually shy away from the ae- syllable) would make an interesting name for a race.
I suppose my last thought is to think about how other races seen this race you've created. Perhaps think about other fantasy creatures (faeries, gorgons, yuki-onna, etc) and apply a name similar to that to the race.
Hopefully this helped some
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Old 01-04-2012, 12:39 AM
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Vegran sounds a little too much like a person who professes to eat no animal products...
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Old 01-19-2012, 07:10 PM
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Shamakeen

I was driving through Pennsylvania and this city name jumped right off the green sign, "Shamokin" and it hit me as a pretty good name. A little change-around and I call it good.
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Old 01-19-2012, 10:34 PM
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I used to live near there. I always wanted to say, Shamokin pot! Pennsylvania is full of interesting names. I remember my confusion well when I first heard of the city, King of Prussia.
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