Anonymous asked in Arts & HumanitiesBooks & Authors · 2 years ago

Choosing an old fashion name for a character without getting into old lady sounding territory?

Hi, hope you all are having a good weekend. I going to be writing a romance novel about an actress, who is sort of the it girl in Hollywood at moment, and she has a love affair with the director she is working with. The story is set in modern times (2017/2018). The actress is haft French (her mother) and half American (her father). She has just turned 30 years old in the story.

I want to try to give her a name that is not used by a really big celebrity (for example I don't want to name her Taylor, Kim, Jennifer, Kylie, Haley etc.). I also don't want the name to sound pretentious or snooty.

I wouldn't necessarily call it a problem, but I keep picking old fashion sounding names for her and I don't know if the reading audience will attach to her as much or be interested in reading the book if I give her an old fashion name. For example, I suck on the name Beatrice but I know a lot of people think that name is an old ladies name.

So to get to my questions. a) I was wondering if you like the name Beatrice or you think it's an old ladies name. b) down below is a list of potential other names for this character, if you could tell me which ones you like or hate or think are too old ladyish or too pretentious, that would be great. Thank you all so much in advance.

- Beatrice

- Aimee

- Sasha

- Annalise (particularly wondering if this name sounds pretentious)

- Annaleigh (on-na-lee)

- Agnes

- Daphne

- Maxine

- Nicolette

- Estella

- Gemma

3 Answers

  • 2 years ago
    Favorite Answer

    I totally understand wanting your totally awesome character to have a totally awesome name. You've got some great ones picked out!

    Beatrice - My personal favorite. I think using Bea as a nickname would be SO cute. I think the way you portray your character could really change the old lady feeling some people get from the name Beatrice. Let her define the name.

    Aimee - Cute! I get more of a "country girl moves to the big city" sort of vibe from this one, though.

    Sasha - Love. Sophisticated and classic while still young enough to not sound like a grandma.

    Annalise - Pretty, though perhaps slightly on the pretentious side. I think you can make it work though.

    Annaleigh - Cute, but I wouldn't know how to pronounce it so your readers might have trouble. I thought "anna-lee."

    Agnes - Out of all of these, this one sounds the most like an older name to me.

    Daphne - Love!!! Definitely one of my favorites on the list.

    Maxine - I like this one! Classic but spunky. Cute!

    Nicolette - Not a huge fan of Nicolette. To me it sounds like a bad mixup of Nicole and Claudette... But perhaps seeing an awesome character with this name would change my mind.

    Estella - Very classic but still young and posh. Love it! However beware of other literary associations. Stella from A Streetcare Named Desire and Estella from Great Expectations. That doesn't mean you can't name your character that, though! Plenty of people have the same names.

    Gemma - Also one of my favorites. Love it! Definitely sounds like a celebrity name to me. Not old at all, but still seems really sophisticated and not too popular.

    My favorites are Beatrice/Bea, Sasha, Daphne, and Gemma. Good luck with your story! It sounds awesome so far.

  • Tina
    Lv 7
    2 years ago

    Five pre-raphaelite names for you: Cecily, Gertrude, Magdalen, Margaret, and Rosalys."

    but personally I would call her Sally and change it if I thought of something better.

  • 2 years ago

    You are wasting time for no good reason. A majority of readers will look at her name and then continue with reading the story. Whether her name sounds old-fashioned or pretentious is irrelevant. Pick a name and get to writing.

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