Names play an important role in stories. They can help define a character’s personality, and can make them unique. If the name is unique enough, it can be branded in the reader’s head, leaving them with a constant remembrance of your book.
However, some names–especially in science-fiction and fantasy–can get to be a bit complicated. They can be so complicated in that they slow down the book entirely. I find it slightly annoying when I’m reading, and all the sudden Vleai’fkeorbaila decides to pull a gun on Bleertiouypo. But then, Aerthyra jumps in to save Bleertiouypo, only to be shot down by Vleai’fkeorbaila’s twin brother, Vleai’fkeorbailailp. Things can get pretty dicey.
Naming characters is a responsible act. Making sure that the character’s have a fitting name is one of the biggest things I look for in a book. Often times, I’ll spend an hour or longer coming up with a name that fits the character’s past, present, future, and their reputation.
Do you stress about character names? What’s the most unique name you’ve come up with? Are there any books you’ve read with names that are too hard to pronounce, or that slow up the story?