Naming Names

cropped-lou-pub-2.jpgI’m particularly touchy about people getting my name right. I know its only a label, but it’s MY label. And in my case, I have good reason for people to get it right. After all, I wouldn’t want anyone to confuse me with an underwear model, would I? Yep, that’s why the ‘G’ is there (and no, it’s not for G string).

For all I know, Louise Cole the model may be really upset at being confused with a poet, but that’s not where I’m going today.

For this week’s creative writing excursion I thought we’d take a look at the name game.

Below, I’m going to describe three characters, I want you to give them names. And when you’ve done that, see if you can weave the three of them into a *short story.

So, think about the age of your characters, gender, occupation, hobbies, social status, and consider what names might be appropriate for the era they’re from (you can look up online which names were popular at a particular time). Of course, there are always exceptions to rules, and that might be where the core of your story lies.

Here are your three characters:

1 A shy, deep thinking androgynous child of ten years of age, with a lisp and a propensity for blushing when lying.

2 A tall, ungainly woman with long grey hair, glasses, a loud voice, and an obvious disregard for her personal appearance.

3 A short, heavy-set young man with strong opinions and a thirst for fame and fortune at all costs.

These people could be neighbours. Or members of the same bird-watching club. Or strangers in a queue for the bus. Or they may have met at a church fete two years ago. Or they may be in line awaiting their COVID-19 vaccine?

You are the writer, give them names and create a story for them. Just try not to unnecessarily confuse them with underwear models, unless there’s a really good tale to be told there…

*The HE Bates Short Story Competition is now open – for short stories of up to 2,000 words, deadline April 5th. I still value my win in that contest in 2015. The prize was (and still is) a satisfying £500. I documented that occasion in detail here.  

If you are new to me, read more about what the point of all this is here