Join Free! | Login    
   Popular! Books, Stories, Articles, Poetry
Where Authors and Readers come together!


Featured Authors:  William Pusey, iPhyllis Jean Green, iAnthony Dalton, iDiane Hundertmark, iGina McKnight, iDave Brooks, iAllen Smith, i

  Home > Publishing > Articles Popular: Books, Stories, Articles, Poetry     

John Howard Reid

· + Follow Me
· Contact Me
· Books
· Articles
· Poetry
· News
· Stories
· Blog
· 481 Titles
· 270 Reviews
· Save to My Library
· Share with Friends!
Member Since: Feb, 2008

John Howard Reid, click here to update your pages on AuthorsDen.

Featured Book
Flowers from the Grave - audio book download mp3
by Wendy Laing

Is this stranger really a ghost? Is he a friend to Inspector Jane Doe or is she about to be his next victim?..  
BookAds by Silver
Gold and Platinum Members

Naming Your Characters
by John Howard Reid   
Rated "G" by the Author.
Last edited: Saturday, October 23, 2010
Posted: Saturday, October 23, 2010

  Print   Save    Follow    Share 

Recent articles by
John Howard Reid

214.93 Dollars. Is This a Record Price?
TITLES TO AVOID How to use Hollywood Classics Title Index
BAD TITLES 2 more outsiders
BAD TITLES: 3 To Avoid
RIGHT NAMES and titles for stories, poems and novels
Give YOURSELF an Edge!
Exactly the right title for your book, poem or story?
           >> View all

I'm sure every author realizes that naming his or her characters is an important element in both novels and short stories.

Naming Characters

This becomes even more important of course if you are aiming at writing a series of stories or novels around a central character.

The more original your name, the better, so long as it is not too outlandish – unless of course your intent is humorous.

Like Walt Disney, I've always been interested in characters with alliterative names: Donald Duck, Mickey Mouse, Horace Horsecollar, etc. 

I am particularly drawn to Mickey Mouse. I find the M-M combination most appealing. I employed it for Micaela Morris in my book, "Micaela Morris in Jo's Heaven".  

Therefore it was a little disappointing to discover there were actually two or three well-known people bearing the Michaela Morris name. And this was in the U.S.A. alone!

So for my detective, I determined to use a name that was not in any way outlandish, but that seemed reasonably common, and indeed almost as normal as Butler and Greene.

Yet I required a name that also initiated a pleasingly virile association.

And even importantly, of course, a name that embodied all the above qualities, yet was absolutely unique.

After many tries, I finally came up with Merryll Manning. I Googled the name. There was no Merryll Manning in the entire world.

Now of course there is "Merryll Manning: Trapped on Mystery Island", "Merryll Manning: The Health Farm Murders" and "Merryll Manning: Beachfront Holiday".

My own Merryll Manning website can be found at

(Incidentally Goodreads are conducting a Giveaway for "Merryll Manning: Beachfront Holiday". To enter, you can click the prominently displayed Goodreads box located close to the top of the above Merryll Manning website). 


Web Site: Merryll Manning

Reader Reviews for "Naming Your Characters"

Want to review or comment on this article?
Click here to login!

Need a FREE Reader Membership?
Click here for your Membership!

Reviewed by Joyce White
Hi John, I agree names should be simple and easy to mouth, pleasing even. I think names should be a metaphor for their personalities
the scarier, the weirder the name. I just read a book where the names were so hard to understand, I had to keep regrouping to keep the characters in my head. Oh, well, nice article. You can find another review at I'm reading Mexican Autumn, enjoying names like Hippy Harper. My best, Joyce
Popular Publishing Articles
  1. Being a Children's Book Author in Today's
  2. Writing Advice From Mark Twain
  3. Get Published - Know Your Markets
  4. AD's Dorien Grey interview
  5. Kathy's Hook Up - For Your E Book
  6. Three Reasons Why Writers Must Get to Know
  7. Get Published - Narration - First or Third
  8. Chiki Sarkar and the New Crop of Indian Ed
  9. The Naughtiness of Plagiarism
  10. You and a Writers Conference

Are You Still Submitting Your Work to a Traditional Publisher? by Edward Patterson

With the new and exciting world of Kindles and Print-on-Demand (POD), Independent Publishing is becoming an enticing choice and a viable alternative to traditional publishing...  
BookAds by Silver, Gold and Platinum Members

I Have A Reason To Smile by R.E.E.S Blogs Linda Smith, Publisher

This book is about Poetry. Many different kinds of fables, short stories about life experiences, laughter, drama, children, humor, love, inspiration and some urban styles of poetry..  
BookAds by Silver, Gold and Platinum Members

Authors alphabetically: A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z

Featured Authors | New to AuthorsDen? | Add AuthorsDen to your Site
Share AD with your friends | Need Help? | About us

Problem with this page?   Report it to AuthorsDen
AuthorsDen, Inc. All rights reserved.