Same first name?


(Ohio)

Question: Hi, I'm doing an outline for my novel and I have been wondering... Is it okay to have a character the same first name as mine? Or not? I would really appreciate your answer. :-)


Answer: You can name your characters whatever you like. You're the writer.

That said, if you give a character the same first name as you, some readers will wonder if you have simply put yourself into your novel, or created a version of yourself you would like to be in the story. (For example, Clary in the City of Bones novels may have been originally based on Ginny Weasley from Harry Potter, but who hasn't wondered if she was equally based on the personality of the author, Cassandra Clare, because of the similarity of the names?

You may or may not care if readers make such speculations. Some writers maintain that every character we create is simply a version of ourselves in different circumstances.

However, some people do look down on writers who engage in the "Mary Sue" phenomenon, in which a writer writes a piece of fan fiction, inserting a character who is an idealized version of the writer herself, in order to indulge her fantasy of being in that story world. Naturally, everything that happens to that character resembles a fantasy in that it gratifies the writer's ego, satisfies her desires, validates her beliefs, etc.

Best of luck.

Comments for Same first name?

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Feb 01, 2016
Thank you.
by: Anonymous

Thanks for answering my question. :-)

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