I need a whole batch of names

So I recently finished my second attempt at writing a novel, and I hate MOST of the names in there. Can you brilliant namers rename a whole book's worth of characters and places for me? Because I totally can't. It's a reimagining of Snow White. Here's what I need:
1. a protagonist. Snow white, of course. I've been using Bianca, but I don't love it. I would like something that played off of Snow or White, but is also a name with notes of sweetness and humility. Bianca doesn't quite fit.
2. An antagonist. You know, a vain, petty wicked queen. I want something that sounds fantastical and pretty and just a bit grandiose. I've been using Galindamere as a place holder name, which obviously I can't use because it is yecchy.
3. I also need help naming a city. It is a big, grand, glorious magical city. All good things. It needs a name that is bright and shiny and glorious but also strong and prosperous. Yeah, no small order there, right?
4. I could use another name for the prince's kingdom of origin too. The one I have isn't great.
5. I also need a name for a snooty, brilliant magician. I can't even remember what I used for this guy it was so bad. He's from the big, grand, glorious city, so that style should be consistent.
For an idea of the naming style I'm using, for purposes of consistency, the main kingdom is Tularia. I don't love it, but I don't hate it either. The prince is named Theodore. I'm happy with that. The dwarves all have botanical names, but the aristocratic characters wouldn't.
Thank you! I'm excited to see what you all come up with.

Replies

1
June 15, 2013 3:05 AM

"White" names: Blanche, Blanchefleur, any name with Gwen- or ending in -wen (Blodwen, Bronwen, Olwen, etc.), Candida, Fionnuala, Livna, Ailbhe (Alva), Baila, Alba. Rosalba (white rose)

'Snow' names: Eirwen (snow white in Welsh, also Eira, Eirlys), Gwyneira (white snow), Nieves

2
June 15, 2013 12:31 PM

1. a protagonist. Snow white, of course. I've been using Bianca, but I don't love it. I would like something that played off of Snow or White, but is also a name with notes of sweetness and humility. Bianca doesn't quite fit.

-- Blanche means white in French, Blanche-Neige would be "Snow White", but that's obviously a very basic name.

 

2. An antagonist. You know, a vain, petty wicked queen. I want something that sounds fantastical and pretty and just a bit grandiose. I've been using Galindamere as a place holder name, which obviously I can't use because it is yecchy.

-- Marie means something like "bitter, unpleasant", & made as a double-barrel name (ex: Marie-Claire, Marie-Ann, etc.) gives it a grandiouse sound, I think.

3. I also need help naming a city. It is a big, grand, glorious magical city. All good things. It needs a name that is bright and shiny and glorious but also strong and prosperous. Yeah, no small order there, right?

-- Brightmore is a place in Fable III, if that helps with any inspiration for a name ... something along those lines maybe? Bright_, Glorington, 

3
June 15, 2013 9:36 PM

Miriam already gave you an excellent list of "white" names, but if you're willing to go a bit further afield, I've always thought that Snow White ought to be named Susanna -- it comes from a word meaning "lily" (or "rose"), which are associated with whiteness. Along the same lines, you could also use Lily, Lilia, or Lilian. Another whole class of "white" names: Margaret, Pearl, Daisy and their relations. (I wouldn't use Pearl, though, because it's the out-of-wedlock daughter's name in The Scarlet Letter.) Then there's Argentina, but the real-world associations are too strong, I think.

For the queen, my first thought was Regina (Latin for 'queen'), but in some sense it'd seem like a "working name" that stuck, rather than an actual character name. Then I turned to my favorite English feminine name list (http://heraldry.sca.org/names/reaneyintro.html); these are all names used by actual women in England, mostly in the 12-1300s. A few that struck me as meeting some of your ideas/criteria: Admiranda, Amphelisia, Bencelina, Bonajoia, Claramunda, Diamanda, Eglentina, Eulalia, Euphemia, Eustacia, Godeleva, Goldiva, Hugolina, Imagantia, Jolicia, Luciana, Mabillia, Odelina, Orabella, Petronilla, Philomena, Primavera, Theophania, Wentiliana.

For the magician, I'm thinking a long and complicated Romano-Greek name could suit. Here's a list of such: http://heraldry.sca.org/names/byzantine/PLRE_masc_names.html . I particularly like: Aristomachus, Asclepiodotus, Belisarius, Constantinianus, Euphemius, Maximinus, Olympiodorus, Phoebammon, Smaragdus, Theophylactus, Venerandus.

I'll have to think about the placename questions a bit, but I did want to comment on Tularia: it reminds me strongly of tularemia, which is a nasty bacterial disease spread by rabbits.

4
June 16, 2013 1:22 AM

Wow, thank you, these suggestions are great. Admiranda and Diamanda are absolutely PERFECT for the queen's character.  I honestly can't decide which one I like better. 

Susanna is a nice suggestion. It has just the right notes of sweetness for my girl. I also think Lilian is a nice fit. I'm also considering Gwendolyn for her, because I love that name. It might be a bit TOO regal for her character, but she is a princess, so we might have to go for it. Susanna though. . .it's just so delightfully sweet and ordinary. Incidentally, she spends most of the book going by an alias, and I chose Daisy for that. What a happy coincidence. I was thinking about changing it to something more humble like Dandelion, but perhaps I'll keep it. 

Aristomachus is a total winner too. The other names are great too. Smargdus especially appeals. I might have to use that somewhere else. It's just a lovely construction of a name. I also LOVE Theopylactus for him. It just sounds so uppity, but alas, it's too close to Theodore. Maybe if I change his name. . .

Drat on the news about the bunnies. Do you have any better ideas? I'm not in love with Tularia or anything, it's just a name that works. 

And finally, thank you, thank you, thank you. I feel like all of these offer just the splash of color that my storyr was lacking. 

5
June 18, 2013 6:42 PM

For the queen, you could go really over-the-top and use both: Queen Admiranda Diamanda, Fairest of Them All (TM) etc. etc. It might be a bit too, I dunno, comic-bookish?, but it could work.

An alias of Daisy would work especially well with Margaret as her proper name -- "marguerite" is another name for the flower. (The flower-name and the Greek-origin pearl-name are one and the same in many languages.) Likewise, you could do Susanna as the proper name and Lily (or even Lily-Rose) as the alias, and satisfy all your name-geeky readers. :-)

I do like Theodore for the prince, so as fun as Theophylactus would be, perhaps one of the other choices is better in this case. You can use TP for a drive-by character (maybe in someone's family tree) who's only mentioned once. (I entirely approve of your desire to avoid common initials between characters. When I'm reading, my desire to find out what happens next often causes me to only read the beginning of each name, and three characters in Al- or whatever can really throw me off my rhythm.)

6
June 18, 2013 3:28 PM

Re: Regina, that is actually the wicked queen's name in Disney/ABC's "Once Upon a Time". She's one of the few characters who has the same name in fairy-tale-land and in the real world. (Snow White's name in fairy-tale land is just that: first name Snow, last name White. I haven't decided whether this is absolutely brilliant or totally lazy. In Storybrooke, her name is Mary Margaret Blanchard.)

7
June 16, 2013 8:57 AM

Instead of Theodore, maybe:

Christopher

Thomas

William

Nathaniel

Alexander

Harrison

Maximilian

Laurence

8
June 18, 2013 7:08 PM

I've been mulling the place-name question, but it's hard: real-world placenames tend toward the prosaic rather than the poetic, and made-up names tend to sound, well, fake.

One track I thought of was to mine European fairy-tale and folk-tale traditions for names, but I don't know much about the topic, and haven't found a good place to look them up. The one little niche that I do know is Hungarian folk-tales. The intro texts for these stories often mention going beyond the Óperenciás tenger "Operential sea" and over the glass mountains. So maybe something like Operentia for the country, and a Latin or Italian translation of "glass mountain" for the city? I'd want to run it by someone who actually knows these languages, but something like Montevetrio?

9
June 27, 2013 9:01 AM

You've gotten some great suggestions here!

If you don't use "Admiranda Diamonda", I just might have to!