Using same name in story writing.

NotaNuffian

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I can't deny that what I was attempting is stupid. To name two background characters with the same name. Solely because of:
A. It might cause confusion.
B. Almost, if not all stories that I read don't make such a mistake. Even if there are same (first) name, there will still be a slight difference by tweaking the last name.

Then I got stunned by Oracle Paths (Yes I said it is not my cup but I still wolf it down. Kind of reminds me what I loved about Randidly) with the author using the same name (Lily in this case) for MC's cousin and for a legal loli (¯\_(ツ)_/¯).

Now I get that the author fully differentiate them by splitting their character appearance scene clearly and never had they show up when both their groups are in the same place, I still find it off... because I feel wrong. It is the same as when I named my MC's village teacher and the chieftain the same name and often clutter them together in scenes.

So, has anyone witness such weird naming habit, of having two or maybe more characters with the same name?
 

TrashyHuman

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I mean, I personally don't really bother with names much, prefering to remember them by roles. It's a habit I developed after wolfing down an unhealthy amount of Chinese/Korean stories (not Japanese however, since they mostly have easily-memorable names or even use Anglo-Saxon/German and rarely French or Russian names). So I wouldn't probably even notice if a story had two characters sharing a name (oh, so both of these characters are named Kim Long Yamada? Poggers)
 

BenJepheneT

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I usually write smaller-scaled stories with only a handful of characters at a time so I don't run into these sorts of problems but I do have a naming scheme to avoid the aforementioned issue when it arrives.

I have two randomizers bookmarked in Chrome. One for consonants and another for vowels; including the special variants. Yes, I include the Ê's and the Ø's. But complicated ones like Œ or Æ I exclude.

Whenever I need a name, I roll at least two consonants and one vowel. This way, I can get not only a simply name but a memorable albeit weird one. After that, I got to a name list I have saved in a Doc file under my story's title and cross-check, just in case. If not, I add the name as a profile into the list for safe-keeping purposes.

Complicated and tedius, but foolproof. I've already got a character named Lüd in one of my stories. It may not be ideal nor would the name make sense, but it's hella easy to keep yourself from repeating the same name.
 

CupcakeNinja

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I can't deny that what I was attempting is stupid. To name two background characters with the same name. Solely because of:
A. It might cause confusion.
B. Almost, if not all stories that I read don't make such a mistake. Even if there are same (first) name, there will still be a slight difference by tweaking the last name.

Then I got stunned by Oracle Paths (Yes I said it is not my cup but I still wolf it down. Kind of reminds me what I loved about Randidly) with the author using the same name (Lily in this case) for MC's cousin and for a legal loli (¯\_(ツ)_/¯).

Now I get that the author fully differentiate them by splitting their character appearance scene clearly and never had they show up when both their groups are in the same place, I still find it off... because I feel wrong. It is the same as when I named my MC's village teacher and the chieftain the same name and often clutter them together in scenes.

So, has anyone witness such weird naming habit, of having two or maybe more characters with the same name?
It happens in life. You gotta just roll with it
 

Amok

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Interesting premise, not something I've seen much( now and then you'll get Joeys and Marys etc., but more of a once-off thing rather than recurring side chars)

Depending on Earth culture, shared names can be very commonplace, so could make sense to have 'em in a fantasy setting. Can also be common in extended families, as well as children with parent names.

Possible solutions: nicknames, definite characterization, group-socialization habits(Kergan always asks Lil1 questions, is always shy around Lil2 etc.)
Manners of speech: Lisps, general dialogue structure etc. (John1 always says 'yeah', John2 is a mumbler, 'Hmm mmm')
Then you can go into the whole 'Big Bertha' and 'Red John' thing, irl this may happen when a few folk in a community share a name.

Last names can also help, with folk defaulting to them when there's two Donalds in the rooms.
 
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Reborn_Cat

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I can't deny that what I was attempting is stupid. To name two background characters with the same name. Solely because of:
A. It might cause confusion.
B. Almost, if not all stories that I read don't make such a mistake. Even if there are same (first) name, there will still be a slight difference by tweaking the last name.

Then I got stunned by Oracle Paths (Yes I said it is not my cup but I still wolf it down. Kind of reminds me what I loved about Randidly) with the author using the same name (Lily in this case) for MC's cousin and for a legal loli (¯\_(ツ)_/¯).

Now I get that the author fully differentiate them by splitting their character appearance scene clearly and never had they show up when both their groups are in the same place, I still find it off... because I feel wrong. It is the same as when I named my MC's village teacher and the chieftain the same name and often clutter them together in scenes.

So, has anyone witness such weird naming habit, of having two or maybe more characters with the same name?
I don't think having the exact same name is that weird, since I've seen many people who share names so it's not uncommon, in such maybe you can try referring to them as teach and chief rather than the first name
 

AliceShiki

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I can't deny that what I was attempting is stupid. To name two background characters with the same name. Solely because of:
A. It might cause confusion.
B. Almost, if not all stories that I read don't make such a mistake. Even if there are same (first) name, there will still be a slight difference by tweaking the last name.

Then I got stunned by Oracle Paths (Yes I said it is not my cup but I still wolf it down. Kind of reminds me what I loved about Randidly) with the author using the same name (Lily in this case) for MC's cousin and for a legal loli (¯\_(ツ)_/¯).

Now I get that the author fully differentiate them by splitting their character appearance scene clearly and never had they show up when both their groups are in the same place, I still find it off... because I feel wrong. It is the same as when I named my MC's village teacher and the chieftain the same name and often clutter them together in scenes.

So, has anyone witness such weird naming habit, of having two or maybe more characters with the same name?
It's a bad practice to name two characters the same in a given story IMO (unless, of course, you are planning to cause confusion on purpose and this is a relevant point of your story).

Like, sure, it happens all the time IRL, but just because it's perfectly normal for two different people to have the same name IRL, it doesn't suddenly make it a good writing practice (besides, it's a LOT more common to not share a name with most people you've met in your life anyways)... Because well, you're going to confuse your readers for no reason. There is no point in doing that. Don't make your readers confused if you aren't going to leverage that confusion in some way.
 

SakeVision

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It's ok to have the same name, as long as the characters acknowledge it and are distinct enough to be memorable.
They might even develop some nicknames for each other to distinguish themselves, and the same name can cause a lot of fun misunderstandings and comedy.

But personally, I've never done it.
 

Ilikewaterkusa

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I can't deny that what I was attempting is stupid. To name two background characters with the same name. Solely because of:
A. It might cause confusion.
B. Almost, if not all stories that I read don't make such a mistake. Even if there are same (first) name, there will still be a slight difference by tweaking the last name.

Then I got stunned by Oracle Paths (Yes I said it is not my cup but I still wolf it down. Kind of reminds me what I loved about Randidly) with the author using the same name (Lily in this case) for MC's cousin and for a legal loli (¯\_(ツ)_/¯).

Now I get that the author fully differentiate them by splitting their character appearance scene clearly and never had they show up when both their groups are in the same place, I still find it off... because I feel wrong. It is the same as when I named my MC's village teacher and the chieftain the same name and often clutter them together in scenes.

So, has anyone witness such weird naming habit, of having two or maybe more characters with the same name?
Probably did lol
 

K5Rakitan

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I have multiple Michaels in my story because I've dated 3, two of them at the same time.
 

Impotent

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I don't think there really should be any reason for there being two or more of the same name in the story, unless its something I've missed.

Just look up some names online, I usually use ones that have a certain meaning, so as to further make them more distinct.

That being said, there were some instances where I read two or three characters who had the same name in the same story. Can't remember though.
 

Cipiteca396

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So, has anyone witness such weird naming habit, of having two or maybe more characters with the same name?
One of my guilty pleasure stories is a LN called The Dark Knight Story, or Summoned to Defeat the Hero. The translator is a piece of shit, but the actual author is a real sweetie and a hard worker.

I've been following the story through MTL, so it's hard to say if anything I'm reading is correct, but supposedly there's a famous mage called Magius who is basically the founder of magic for humankind.

Because he's such a special figure for humans, literally everyone names their kids after him if they want them to grow up to be a great magician. As such, like eighty percent of the people in the Mages' City are named Magius. It's like being named James or John in an English speaking nation.

To distinguish each other, they use nicknames derived from their appearance or study habits.


I think that's the most efficient way to get around having two characters with the same name. Just give them distinct nicknames.

In school, a lot of other people had the same name as me, and we usually just said the name and the first letter of the last name to distinguish each other. That's a little boring though, so the first one is better in my opinion.
 
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BlackKnightX

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I can't deny that what I was attempting is stupid. To name two background characters with the same name. Solely because of:
A. It might cause confusion.
B. Almost, if not all stories that I read don't make such a mistake. Even if there are same (first) name, there will still be a slight difference by tweaking the last name.

Then I got stunned by Oracle Paths (Yes I said it is not my cup but I still wolf it down. Kind of reminds me what I loved about Randidly) with the author using the same name (Lily in this case) for MC's cousin and for a legal loli (¯\_(ツ)_/¯).

Now I get that the author fully differentiate them by splitting their character appearance scene clearly and never had they show up when both their groups are in the same place, I still find it off... because I feel wrong. It is the same as when I named my MC's village teacher and the chieftain the same name and often clutter them together in scenes.

So, has anyone witness such weird naming habit, of having two or maybe more characters with the same name?
Haven’t seen this as much in most novels, but I think it entirely depends on the narrator—the way they tell the story and not confusing the reader.
 

Jemini

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I can't deny that what I was attempting is stupid. To name two background characters with the same name. Solely because of:
A. It might cause confusion.
B. Almost, if not all stories that I read don't make such a mistake. Even if there are same (first) name, there will still be a slight difference by tweaking the last name.

Then I got stunned by Oracle Paths (Yes I said it is not my cup but I still wolf it down. Kind of reminds me what I loved about Randidly) with the author using the same name (Lily in this case) for MC's cousin and for a legal loli (¯\_(ツ)_/¯).

Now I get that the author fully differentiate them by splitting their character appearance scene clearly and never had they show up when both their groups are in the same place, I still find it off... because I feel wrong. It is the same as when I named my MC's village teacher and the chieftain the same name and often clutter them together in scenes.

So, has anyone witness such weird naming habit, of having two or maybe more characters with the same name?

There are some writers who play off similar or identical names for comedic purposes. I think the most prominent example I'm aware of is He Who Fights With Monsters, with the Berts and the Als. Then, you have Albert, who completely confuses the MC for a while because he doesn't know whether Albert is a Bert or an Al.
 

AliceShiki

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Btw, something I remembered just now that is very relevant to this thread IMO~

Context: This is a comic that is meant to show players who know nothing about LotR playing a D&D LotR campaign, and they have just defeated Saruman~

aa.jpg

a.jpg


Also, a note from the Comic's Author:
Just to have a little fun with your players, try switching the names of two characters which start with the same letter and see if they notice.

And by “fun” I mean, “abruptly realize that all your hard work and etymology research is a comical waste of time”.
 
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