For me, choosing a name for a character is one of the most nerve-wracking things I have to do. I worry that I’ll get it all wrong, that they won’t fit their name, that it will sound stupid.
Besides, thinking up all those names all by yourself (especially if you want to use names from cultures other than your own) is nearly impossible.
Here are some of my favorite resources for naming characters:
Nameberry is like my one stop shop for first and middle names. They have handy lists of names which is great if you’re looking for something specific? Say Colonial Names for Boys or Girls? How about Mermaid Baby Names? Or Saint’s Names? You get the idea – if you need categorized name suggestions, this is the site for you.
Behind The Name
I also love this site. I use it more for naming secondary characters or even background characters. It’s easy to go to the randomizer, choose a nationality or ethnicity and have the site generate a name. I just keep clicking until I find a name that…er…clicks.
I also love looking at their lists. A couple favorites are the list of Scottish names and Irish names, simply because a handful of these appear in my own heritage. One neat feature that I enjoy is the ability to look at a name and see a list of its usage in other cultures. I chose the Scottish name Christie (which is masculine and not at all how I have heard it used here in the States) which is the diminutive of Christopher and has a nice list of uses from other places. It was this feature that helped me with my family tree making and led to the Scottish ancestry of my main family.
Using these sites has saved many of my characters from having really dull and overly modern names. Hoping they can help you too!