Tag: Names

Worldbuilding Wednesday 8/7/19: Let’s Talk About
xxxxCleopatra

The name Cleopatra conjures up images of an exotic Egyptian beauty, an ancient dynasty, a scheming queen, a seductress. In movies she’s been played by Elizabeth Taylor, Claudette Colbert, Vivien Leigh, Joan Collins,  and Theda Bara; and to this day she remains a popular Halloween and performing persona for celebrities like Katy Perry, Heidi Klum, …

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Worldbuilding Wednesday 7/31/19: Detective Novels

The gruff private eye who investigated crimes with a world-weary cynicism had his start with author Dashiell Hammett amidst the throes of Prohibition when organized crime ran amok. Paperbook books began to be widely available in the decade after, and the two combined for masterpieces of vintage kitsch like the above (actual) novel by Fredric …

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Worldbuilding Wednesday 7/24/19: The Best of
xxxxTwittersnips II (Characters)

Iconic female characters for SFF are hard to find… and by iconic I mean they will be easily known by any reader with a good knowledge of the field even if rendered by disparate illustrators. Elric of Melniboné, who was in last week’s post, is one: armored albino man with a sword. Molly Millions, who …

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Worldbuilding Wednesday 7/17/19: The Best of
xxxxTwittersnips I (Characters)

I’ve posted almost 1,000 randomly generated names on Twitter so far, and I thought it would be interesting to showcase my favorites. These are names up to June of 2018 that may be used for characters, either in a story or in a gaming situation.   Characters I Queen Kapranje Liegestrud, an imaginary Scandinavian monarch …

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Worldbuilding Wednesday 7/10/19: Arabian Nights Tales II

It’s not only the translations of One Thousand and One Arabian Nights that have changed over the years; illustrations of the classic have changed as well. The oil painting Alnaschar’s Fortune, by William Ewart Lockhart, embodies a realistic, dramatic Victorian style, but starting in the 20th century, children’s book illustrators  showed a move towards abstraction …

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Worldbuilding Wednesday 7/3/19: Arabian Nights Tales I

One Thousand and One Arabian Nights is a treasure trove of literature of the fantastic. I’ve randomized its pseudo-Arabic names and places here, and the titles of the stories themselves also make for an interesting randomization stew. They stick to a simple formula of “Tale of the Something” or “Something of Something” repeating elements such …

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Worldbuilding Wednesday 6/26/19: Parts of the Brain

Sometimes, when you’re writing, you need to pull something out of your ass, or your gluteus maximus using the medical term. Perhaps it’s something for a game or cartoon. Or the anatomy of some newly discovered space or fantasy creature. Or perhaps it’s a different world with a different sort of anatomy altogether. If you …

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Worldbuilding Wednesday 6/19/19: Rare Dog Breeds

In the dog world there are hundreds of different breeds, some ancient and just now gaining recognition, others created recently to fulfill some aesthetic or work demand. These puppies, for example, are Turkish Catalburuns, a rare breed that is born with two noses ** or rather one nose divided into two chambers — split nostrils …

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Worldbuilding Wednesday 6/12/19: Coffee Blends

Coffee in Seattle is big business. Small roasters abound, creating their own special mixes and blends. I give name suggestions for those coffee houses here, and as for the specialties they offer, why not one of these randomly generated ones?   Coffee Blends Sunny Aztec Down Under Midnight Mountain Eden Southeast Cascade Sunrise Diplomat Lazy …

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Worldbuilding Wednesday 6/5/19: A Land Fit for Heroes

I did not think too much of Richard K. Morgan’s fantasy novel The Cold Commands, but I do admire the care the author put into his naming systems for the trilogy. Each culture of his universe —  Kiriath, Yhelteth, League, Majak — has its own naming conventions, and all are distinct from each other and …

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