The worst thing about worldbuilding

Naming things.

I consider it to be by far the greatest obstacle that is keeping me back with getting anything about a setting typed down. Things are taking more specific shapes and gain more individual characteristics as I write them down, and to write about them they have to have a name.

Names don’t have to be anything fancy. Every made up word sounds a little strange in isolation but it becomes more normal as you are using it. However, in a lot of situation you don’t want your names to look like obviously made up fantasy names. Especially when you are going for a unique style that stands in contrast to Standard Fantasy Settings. And you also don’t want all your made up names to sound the same.

Naming things is the worst part of creating fantasy worlds. It ranges from anoying to frustrating and up to infuriating. But there just isn’t any way around it.

4 thoughts on “The worst thing about worldbuilding”

  1. I worked several times as a conlanger i.e. a Creator of constructed languages for writers (and even once for a German film-maker…) so I can help. You can get in touch with me, I surely have languages on my shelf that can help you.

  2. Pull apart the names in fantasy maps and create a table so that you can combine them in interesting ways:
    FIRST PART
    01-02 Lonely
    03-04 Mirk
    05-06 Misty

    SECOND PART
    01-03 Mountain(s)
    04-06 Wood

    1. For place names, I indeed favor English. After all, when places are named, they always mean something in the language of the people who named them.
      Things get more tricky with personal and animal names.

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