How Did I Come Up With Character Names?

character names

J.K. Rowling is probably my all-time favorite author when it comes to character names. As you probably know, Rowling has come up with names either of influence to her, or words that match a character’s personality. For example, Filch sounds a lot like ‘filth,’ Snape is akin to ‘snake,’ and Umbridge, when you think about it, sounds like ‘umbrage.’

There are other examples. One of which is Voldemort, which is French for the phrase ‘flight of death.’ That said, I loosely took a page out of Rowling’s book when it came to deriving character names, which is what I will share with you in today’s post.

Every name below was derived from something. And while I have a few “filler names” in the work, your main characters and even a few minor ones have been given special treatment in regard to their name. Let’s get started.


Sion Fawkes Zona

In addition to my ambition to be a bestselling indie author, I’m also a sports writing contributor for blogs regarding the NFL’s Arizona Cardinals, and I actually lent my pen name to the main character in Elementals of Nordica. If you type Sion Fawkes into a search engine, odds are you’ll find some of my most popular works regarding the Cardinals. Especially during the NFL season.

The name Zona comes from the blog Raising Zona, the first sports-related blog to let me contribute to them.

Also, Sion is short for Sionnach, but so far in what I’ve written regarding the series, he’s only been referred to it a handful of times. Of course, Sionnach, if you look it up, stems from the Old Irish language family. And while I have no Irish, or at most dashes of the nationality, the word also accurately describes Sion’s personality. At least when you discover the animal to which the name refers.


Rajae Rabat Worthy

Rajae is one of a few characters named after a real-life individual – the Moroccan wife of an individual I’d worked for a few years back during my waning days as a personal trainer. Since I always pictured Rajae, or Raj as she prefers to go by, as resembling a Moroccan or at least North African woman, the name popped into my mind.

Ditto for her middle name, Rabat. Which in case you did not know, is the capital of Morocco.

A third reason why I was so bent on using the name Raj is that besides the person she’s named after along with her looks, Raj is also our primary fire elemental. Since red symbolizes fire elementals and dominates the Moroccan flag, it made further sense to use the name for the character.


The Kakkos

This was an easy one, as I named Erno, cousin of Sion Zona, after Erno “Emppu” Vuorinen, the lead guitarist of my favorite symphonic metal band, Nightwish. As you’ll discover in later books, I tend to name a lot of characters after band members and singers, but I rarely model their looks after them. However, Erno is one of the few main characters to sport long hair.

Meanwhile, his sister and the youngest of the Kakko trio, Hannah, is one of few characters that I’d named after a fictional character. Both her first name and middle name, Jessica, stem from the Ballard Sisters of Clan Sassanaigh in E.E. Holmes’ World of the Gateway Series. In World of the Gateway, Hannah and Jess are twin sisters, and as such, they comprise a gateway to assist spirits in crossing from the physical world to the afterlife.

As for Hannah’s twin brother (my series, not Holmes!), Timo Kakko, I found Timo to be a rather common Finnish name. And since Timo is our “every character,” it fit his persona.


Lord Tuukka

I mentioned in a previous post that I gave Tamuria the colors navy-blue accented with red as a nod to the University of Arizona. No, I don’t dislike the University of Arizona, but as a fan of the Arizona State Sun Devils, I had to at least throw a jab!

And given the University of Arizona’s location in Tucson, Arizona, Tuukka was just an appropriate name. Again, it’s more fun and games here, and if Arizona ever wins the Pac 12 in college football or basketball or in any other sport, I’m throwing my support behind them as long as Arizona State isn’t facing off with them any time soon!


Lord Col and the Erikssons

This one came from C.S. Lewis’s Chronicles of Narnia, and his nation of Archenland. In The Horse and His Boy, we discover the Archenlanders give their children similar names. So I expanded on that with Col Eriksson, his son Cor, granddaughter Corra, and even his own ancestors of Colin, Collin, Cole, and others.

However, with Corra, I actually took things a bit further, having named her after the principal character in The Legend of Korra. In fact, original drafts actually contained a ‘K’ for the name in favor of a ‘C’ until I changed it to make things more uniform with Corra and her ancestors.

Eriksson, on the other hand, comes from Leif Erikson. Erikson was one of the first European explorers to step foot on North American soil 500 years before Columbus. The last name, and knowing what we know about Leif Erikson in real life, may clue you into Col’s ancestry once you read the books.


Valkyrie Guthrun Siskonen

Valkyrie gets her name from the legendary figures in the Nordic/Germanic traditions. In original drafts, I named the character Kaija, before changing it to Valkyrie since she’s our primary blood elemental and of course, the valkyries were the “choosers of the slain” in the Germanic traditions.

Her middle name is Guthrun, which stems from the character Gudrun/Kriemhild in the Germanic Heroic Legends. And if you know anything about the tales, it gives you some decent insight regarding Valkyrie’s personality.

The Core Four

The Core Four were characters I initially wasn’t going to insert. However, I wanted no Chekvov’s guns regarding characters close to Sion in Wind Wielder if I could help it, and during early drafts, I had way too many fill-in characters during the thrashball matches.

In order to bring significance to each character allied with Sion in Wind Wielder, I had to name and provide backstories for them. Therefore, I added four characters at the last minute named Su Kimiko, Jenn Etela, Rosie Driver, and Lalisa Must-Roosa. And if you’ve joined the Readers Republic, you’ll know that I’m an unapologetic Blink, or a fan of the K-Pop girl band Blackpink. Yeah, I can’t believe it either.

Anyway, all four of these girls have been named after the members of Blackpink. Loosely, anyway. And they are all descended from the East Asian equivalents in the World of Eidolon. I took Su (named after Jisoo), a little further, combining her with Baby Metal’s Su Metal, hence the name Su. Also, Lalisa’s last name, Must-Roosa, is Estonian for black pink.


Just a Handful of Character Names

Today’s post gives you just a handful of character names that I’d come up with. However, if you join the Readers Republic and claim your free downloads, you’ll discover even more names and meanings behind them. Plus, you’ll get background information and even short stories on your favorite main and even minor characters as they pertain to Elementals of Nordica or even the entire Elementals Universe.

Oh, and that’s just the tip of the iceberg. You’ll be the first to know about giveaways and how to join them, receive early access to sneak peeks, reader magnets, interquels, and so much more. Yes, it pays to be a member of the Readers Republic.

The above post is really just a tiny sample of all I offer when you join for free. So if you’d like to dive into a new universe that will encompass many book series, the Readers Republic is the first step.

Thank you so much for reading today’s post,

And Go Suns!