Finding names

Finding names

Many considerations affect the choice of characters’ names. Are they memorable? Do you have too many characters whose names begin with J? Is the name appropriate for the age and birthplace of a character. I tried to consider the first two questions. For France, I could only work with birthplace. But for those writing about American characters,  US Social Security offers great help if you can figure out the year in which your character was “born.” The Social Security website lists the top 10 baby names, both male and female, for years starting more than 100 years ago at

Listed below are the most popular names for characters born in 2015. Compared to the list of favorites over the last 100 years, NONE of the girls’ names is in the top 10 traditional, and only 3 of the boys’ names-James, Michael, and William–are among the top 10.  So if you’re just starting an epic novel and you write slowly, here are possible names for characters born in 2015. All but three will be distinctive for 2015!


1 Noah Emma
2 Liam Olivia
3 Mason Sophia
4 Jacob Ava
5 William Isabella
6 Ethan Mia
7 James Abigail
8 Alexander Emily
9 Michael Charlotte
10 Benjamin Harper

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