Wednesday, January 18

Trending Names

The other girls have talked about the trends in publishing--especially romance--so I'm going to talk about names.

You know what made the top ten list this year? Isabella and Jacob? Depending on which list you read, they both were in the top five. On one list they were both number one.I was glad to see that Edward didn't crack the top 100. I don't care how hot the glittering vampire is, I still see an old man when I think of Edward.

It's funny how a popular book or movie can inspire a generation of names. I'm sure the Dorothy's of the forties and fifties came from The Wizard of Oz. The eighties saw Luke and Laura's named after General Hospital's beloved couple.

My youngest daughter was named after Elizabeth Shue's character in Cocktail. I'd never heard of Jordan for a girl before that movie and I LOVED it. That was a naming trend in the early in Nineties--the feminization of male names for girls. My daughter grew up with Taylers, Sydneys, and more Jordans. It's a trend that continues in YA publishing to this day. Girls with boys names are stronger that other girls. Or our perception of them is. My daughter was born early and weighed under three pounds and to this day, I am sure part of her survival is due to the strong name I gave her.

Names are important--not only in life but in character. My main character wouldn't be the same kid if his name was Mark. Mark does not equal Bixby. A Mark is solid, stoic, but a little bland. (right now, really glad my cousin Mark doesn't read my blog). Bix is a blast.

So, when you go to name your characters. Think long and hard. You could be starting your own trend.


  1. Oh, I like this. I know I hated being Elizabeth when I was a kid (too many letters!), but did sort of like being the only one with that name. Elizabeth is popular now, and I LOVE being Liz, so my mom knew what she was about.

  2. Elizabeth is one of my all-time fave names. Love it. It was to be my confirmation name, but didn't do the ceremony.

    I read a book with a character's last name Ybarra as a kid, and I knew I had to use it eventually. It fit perfectly with Cordero.

    Yup, names matter.

  3. Hi Margie, I love the name Jordan for a girl - you're right, it is a strong name. My own daughter is named Eden. Fifteen years ago it seemed like she was the only one around but slowly and surely it seems to be catching on. Great post, and yeah, I think Bix rocks too. :)

  4. I don't know what I was thinking when I named my daughter Ashley. She always had at least three more in her class. I have a unisex name. Most people think I'm a guy before they meet me. My granddaughter is the first female Jullian i know of. Great post!

  5. I agree -- and I love looking for and finding the PERFECT name for my characters. Great post, Margie!

  6. Liz--I've always loved the name Elizabeth, but then I never had to write on a paper over and over.

    Amanda--Love the name Eden. It just brings up beautiful images when you think about it.

    Shawn--First female Jullian I've ever heard of. It's kind of cool.

    Thanks everyone for stopping by. Loved reading your comments.