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Discussion What's in a Name? | How do we name our Original Characters and why?

Discussion in 'Fan Fiction and Writing Resource' started by Ewok Poet, Nov 11, 2017.

  1. GregMcP

    GregMcP Force Ghost star 5

    Jul 7, 2015
    Got a few? Sure.
    I've got a serious minded older Master, with a well established underworld network.

    And a few ancient Sith Lords that'll get little mentions if I can think up an interesting backstory.
    Findswoman likes this.
  2. Gamiel

    Gamiel Chosen One star 8

    Dec 16, 2012
    May I ad those names to my canon post of spacer names?
  3. Lady_Misty

    Lady_Misty Jedi Grand Master star 4

    Mar 21, 2007
    You have my permission.

    Sent from my iPod touch using Tapatalk
    Gamiel likes this.
  4. Cowgirl Jedi 1701

    Cowgirl Jedi 1701 Jedi Grand Master star 5

    Dec 21, 2016
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  5. Sith-I-5

    Sith-I-5 Force Ghost star 6

    Aug 14, 2002
    Miami Vice. My favourite cop show and cultural icon of the 1980s, grabbed out of the air to name a pretty Chiss girl flirting with patrons in a military bar.

    My protagonist pilot, on whose lap she was sitting, got to say: "Your surname is never 'Vice'; what were your parents, metalworkers?"
    Last edited: Dec 19, 2019
    madman007, CernStormrunner and Gamiel like this.
  6. CernStormrunner

    CernStormrunner Jedi Grand Master star 4

    Jul 6, 2000
    May I ad those names to my canon post of spacer names?

    right on
    Last edited: Dec 20, 2019
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  7. CernStormrunner

    CernStormrunner Jedi Grand Master star 4

    Jul 6, 2000
    ohh i have a few lists:

    The Seven Sins:
    Darth Ravenus - Lord of Gluttony
    Darth Avarus - Lord of Greed
    Darth Lecher - Lord of Lust
    Darth Covetus- Lord of Envy
    Darth Furi Lord of Wrath
    Darth Lethargi - Lord of Sloth
    Darth Vaniti Lord of Pride


    The False Sith: a cult of Sith pretenders that rises up after the death of Palpatine:

    Darth Eglon - Lord of Corpulence, the Lore-Keeper
    Darth Zabas - Lord of Obsession, the Seer
    Darth Zheris - Lord of Dismemberment, the monster maker
    Darth Naras - Lord of Poison, the alchemist
    Darth Agon - Lord of Agony, the Interrogator
    Darth Sekhem - Lord of Violence, the Warrior
    Darth Squalus - Lord of Filth
    Darth Sevyr - Lord of Severing
    Darth Lacera - Lord of Lacerations
    Darth Callus - Lord of Callousness
    Last edited: Dec 23, 2019
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  8. CernStormrunner

    CernStormrunner Jedi Grand Master star 4

    Jul 6, 2000
    Darth Vinnulus - Meaning: delightful, sweet of voice

    Darth Callidus - Meaning: cunning, sly, crafty

    Darth Avernus : Avernus was believed to be the entrance to the underworld, and is portrayed as such in the Aeneid of Virgil. The name comes from the Greek word aornos meaning "without birds", because according to tradition, all birds flying over the lake were destined to fall dead.

    Darth Kallos: Double meaning, Kallos is latin for Beauty, sounds like Callous

    Darth Mephitus: "offensive in odour"; "noxious"; and "poisonous".

    Darth Summanus: Lord of Hell, Monarch of the Night, The Terror that Walketh in Darkness

    Darth Stridulum: to make a shrill creaking noise by rubbing together special bodily structures —used especially of male insects (such as crickets or grasshoppers
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  9. moosemousse

    moosemousse CR Emeritus: FF-UK South star 6

    Oct 3, 2004
    Is it bad that most, if not all, of my names are from random name generators? The book I was going to write for NaNoWriMo was going to have names based on pasta and pasta dishes. The main character was called Fett Uccine.
  10. Sith-I-5

    Sith-I-5 Force Ghost star 6

    Aug 14, 2002
    @moosemousse - Fett Uccine sounds awesome. And probably tastes even better.

    Any drinks bottles or food packages nearby, are often grabbed for quick name inspiration, and I just hope the name is not too recognisable.

    Sometimes I will go to the ingredients, or foreign translations, for inspiration.
    WarmNyota_SweetAyesha likes this.
  11. madman007

    madman007 Jedi Master star 4

    Aug 22, 2007
    I've had a mix of references where OC names are concerned with my fan fics. In the beginning I made them up myself. I would look around my desk and find brand names but I would spell them backwards. In my very first fan fic story I made up a species that was Kroger spelled backward = Regork. Lately, I have been using a name generator but using my own spin on the names given.

    Why Did It Have To Be Her? Commander Oloth Zimnaht is an anagram of Mara Jade's creator, Timothy Zahn.

    Mary Jane Skyler - For the purposes of this trilogy, I had to find a common Earth name but keep the same initials as Mara Jade Skywalker. Ironic since some consider Mara a "Mary" Sue anyway.

    Traits Of Descent: Skarce Voxan - I needed a name of a villain that struck fear in people. I played with the word scar and thus my mysterious assassin was born.

    The Aperion Principle
    Drexal "Drex" Connick
    Nika Jordana
    The above two names were helped by a name generator but I mixed and matched what it gave me. I felt the Jordana was similar to Organa.
    Dr Bose Kenzeel - Sometimes I come up with these names by happy accident. This name for the sinister scientist came to me without me realizing the last name sounds like "conceal", which has a lot to do with the character.

    Krun Li
    These are the names of the leaders of the pirate/religious group named after a ghost. Made them up on my own.
    Last edited: Jan 4, 2020
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  12. Kit'

    Kit' Manager Emeritus star 5 VIP - Former Mod/RSA

    Oct 30, 1999
    In USJS Eena explains that all her siblings names start with E. It’s a family joke from real life carried over to that fic as my younger siblings names all start with A. When my little boy was born his name started with E. My sister then had a baby and his name starts with E. I fall pregnant and my dad points out that according to this new family tradition his name should start with E too.

    So that meant that when I name Eena and her siblings (all 14 of them) they ended up starting with E. It’s now part of the world building. Families name different generations with the same letter.

    Also I broke the family ‘tradition’. Baby 2’s name starts with an R.

    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
    Last edited: Jan 6, 2020
  13. madman007

    madman007 Jedi Master star 4

    Aug 22, 2007
    Can't believe I forgot this name.
    Once in a while I feel the need to honor real life victims by immortalizing them in my stories.
    Best example is the 9 year old Christina-Taylor Green, who was shot to death on January 8, 2011 along with U.S. Representative Gabrielle Giffords in Arizona. I just realized Christina would have been graduating HS this coming year. :(
    In my epic Agharta, I had a 9 year old character who loved studying the Jedi without having Force potential herself. I gave her a Star Wars name Ristina Tai-Lor and she wore a green tunic. ^:)^
    Ewok Poet, Sith-I-5, Kit' and 2 others like this.
  14. devilinthedetails

    devilinthedetails WIP Month Champion star 5 VIP - Game Winner

    Jun 19, 2019
    I admit that I tend to draw on a lot of real world inspiration for my names because I lack the creativity to invent my own:p

    Chen Yile: Chen is a common East Asian surname in Taiwan, Singapore, and China (especially in Guangdong, Zhejiang, Fujian, and Hong Kong). Yile means pleasure-seeking, joy, and happiness in Chinese. Chen Yile also happens to be the name of one of my favorite Chinese gymnasts, so you could say this name is a hopefully subtle nod to her. With Chen Yile the character, I followed the Chinese convention of the surname, Chen, going before the given name, Yile, so Chen is her surname, and Yile is her given name.

    Chen Linlin: The daughter of Chen Yile. For the explanation of her surname (Chen), see above, and for why her surname appears first, also see above. Linlin is Chinese for the somewhat poetic phrase "beauty of the tinkling bell." Linlin also happens to be the given name of one of my favorite balance beam workers of all time, the Olympic gold medalist Deng Linlin, so I chose to name little Chen Linlin partially in her honor.

    Alcide Cesare: Alcide is the Italian form of Alcides, which means "strength" and is itself a Latinized form of a Greek variation of the hero Herakles. Cesare is the Italian form of Caesar. Alcide Cesare is a candidate for political office in my story, so I figured it was appropriate to have a name alluding to leadership.

    Renza Osanna: Renza is the Italian short and feminine form of Lorenzo, which in itself is derived from an ancient Roman cognomen. Osanna is the Italian form of Hosanna. It was also the name of a fifteenth-century Italian saint and mystic. I just thought the combination of these names sounded cool and fit the culture. She is from the same world and culture as Alcide Cesare.

    Darius: Roman form of a Greek name borrowed in term from Persia that means "possessing goodness." Again, I just liked the sound of this one and felt it worked for the culture.

    Catia: An Italian diminutive form of Caterina, which in term is derived from the name Catherine, meaning "pure." Another name I liked the sound of and felt fit with the world I was building.

    Alessa Piera: Alessa is the Italian short form of Alessandra, which in turn derives from Alexander, meaning "defender of mankind." I thought this name was appropriate for someone who advocated and protested for the rights of her people in my story. Piera is an ancient Greek city and a municipality in Catalonia.

    Lazzaro Quintino: Lazzaro is the Italian form of Lazaurs, which means "my God has helped." Quintino is the Italian form of Quintinus, which is derived from the Latin word for "fifth." Another name I liked the sound of and thought would fit the world I was creating.

    Gian Ilario: Gian is the Italian short form of the name Giovanni, itself an alternative of John, meaning "God is gracious." Ilario is the Italian form of Hilarious, meaning "cheerful." Also Ilario might be a Game of Thrones reference for the enjoyment of my fellow Game of Thrones fans. ;)

    Meeno: A Persian name meaning "heaven" or "paradise."

    Sui Jinnan: Sui is a Chinese surname, and Jinnan is a Chinese given name (though I've never been able to find out the meaning, I confess). Sui is the surname of the Chinese gymnast Sui Lu, and Yao Jinnan was another favorite Chinese gymnast of mine, Sui Jinnan is named by combining the names of these two great gymnasts.
    Ewok Poet, madman007, Kahara and 2 others like this.
  15. Kahara

    Kahara Force Ghost star 4

    Mar 3, 2001
    Kept meaning to come back to this thread, because I love names and naming characters. Though sometimes, the name does mean "nothing else fit so I used a fantasy name generator and then maybe tweaked that name further". :p

    Anyway, it's nearly midnight and who needs sleep, so here are a few too many OC names and my vague recollections of how they were chosen.

    Inder Barrett - His last name is meant to be pretty ordinary-sounding, in or out of the GFFA. Inder is another form/transcription of Indra from Hindu mythology. Not very directly related to the character, but he does have hidden depths and so a hefty mythic name seemed to suit him.

    Xenon Bramer - Xenon means "foreigner" or "guest" from Ancient Greek -- in his case, he's definitely felt more like a foreigner for much of his life. Bramer was listed as meaning "hornet" in German (I think), and there's not much deeper meaning but they're pretty cool insects!

    Zarza Karmazyn - Zarza means "blackberry bush" or "bramble" in Spanish -- so far as I know it's not a common personal name but it seemed to fit her personality. Karmazyn means "crimson" in Polish -- again not a surname that I know of, but it seems suiting for a Sith Lord. And it matches that "z". ;)

    Aika Lesedi - Aika is a name used in Star Wars already, though this Aika is no relation to Aika Lars. Picked because it sounds similar to Aikaterine, a Greek name with a really interesting and complicated range of possible meanings. (See here for more: Lesedi is a female name used in the Tswana language, and it means "light" -- which may seem a bit contradictory for her character. In her case, I was thinking more of clarity of perception than Force alignment! (Although, also, her family name does come to her from a relative who was once a Jedi. So...)

    Dzidra Lun - Dzidra is a female name used in Latvian that means "clear", as in clear weather, according to at least one source on Behindthename. It fits her in my mind, though it's hard to explain why since she's not always outwardly sunny. :p At least some sites list Lun as an Irish male name meaning "strong", which also works for her since she's a very active kind of character.

    Triaen Odon - Like a lot of the characters in Shark Kibble, he has an alias that references a real-world shark species. Triaenodon is the genus name that includes the whitetip reef shark, Triaenodon obesus From what I remember, triaenodon specifically means "trident tooth".

    Jarl Ombyrne - Originally from Norse mythology ( -- it seemed to suit his imperious attitude. Ombyrne is remixed from the French word ombre (, which has a nice range of dark and shadowy meanings.

    Qalydon - Kind of derived backwards from the canonical planet name and vague references to a "curse of Qalydon" associated with the New Sith Wars.

    Arik Satu - Arik comes from a remixing of a name in his dad's family, and it's also similar to Eric/Erik/etc. of Scandinavian origin, which means "ever ruler" according to Behindthename. Which is pretty much my go-to source. I also must give a shout-out to ladyofdarkstar from, who used the name earlier (I think) and might have gotten it stuck in my brain. (Her fanfic, Perspective, is an excellent dark retelling of the Thrawn trilogy from an OC POV.) Satu is a female name meaning "fairy tale, fable" in Finnish, and that might give a clue as to the Legends EU character who this alias-last-name alludes to.

    Lydia Shelvay - Last name from the canon character who is her mother. Her first name refers to the Ancient Greek name of a region in what would now be Turkey. ( Chosen because it fit the kind of archaic sound that others in her family (Elena and Corwin) seemed to have in their names. At least, to me those names sound a bit old-fashioned in English. Although Elena is (as far as I know) very current in Spanish and many other languages.

    Inahki Sunil - Inahki comes from Iñaki, which is the Basque version of Ignatius (Latin, unknown origin but often translated as "fire" Some of the earliest appearances of Zeltrons in the old Star Wars comics gave them names like "Bahb" and "Jahn", so this is following that theme a little. Sunil comes from Sanskrit and means some combination of "good, very" and "dark blue" according to Behindthename.

    Tamir Zelenus - Tamir is a male name meaning "tall" in Hebrew, which seemed to suit his way of standing out of a crowd -- if not physically, then at least in personality. :p And Zelenus is a mishmash of various Slavic words and surnames meaning "green" (ъ) with Silenus, who was a satyr associated with Dionysus and with woodlands in Greek mythology. So it refers a bit to the foresty
    side to his character.