Lost in Name-land

When I first started writing I bought several baby name books to find appropriate names for my characters. This is one of the joys of being God of your little world, the naming of people who play out certain roles. Their names should reflect something, although as we know the emotional response of one person to a name isn’t necessarily universal.

So today, as I work on my NoOutMo, my Novel Outline Month (no “National” since the borders extend only to the edges of my desk, and my mind) I have been looking up character names. The new novel will be set in Scotland, as the Bennett sisters travel there to be part of Annie’s wedding to Callum, a Scot, so discovering Scottish names is my new obsession.

I will tell you names as I work out my outline (no sense naming a character who may not end up in the book) but along the way I put my own name into the online search baby naming sites, the modern version of my old school baby name books. Some have slightly hilarious character traits attached to them – great for building characters, by the way. Check out the folks at SheKnows.com who have some unusual ratings:

MacBean

Scottish Meaning: 

The name MacBean is a Scottish baby name. In Scottish the meaning of the name MacBean is: Son of Beathan.

SoulUrge Number: 7

People with this name have a deep inner need for quiet, and a desire to understand and analyze the world they live in, and to learn the deeper truths.

Expression Number: 3

People with this name tend to be creative and excellent at expressing themselves. They are drawn to the arts, and often enjoy life immensely. They are often the center of attention, and enjoy careers that put them in the limelight. They tend to become involved in many different activities, and are sometimes reckless with both their energies and with money.

So, an extrovert who is an introvert. Okay. But I’ve been scouring the earth for my “SoulUrge” number… haven’t you?

Anyway I searched for my name since it is unusual. (I was named after the scientist, Lise Meitner.) SheKnows claims it is a Native American boy’s name, by the way. Don’t believe everything you read on the ‘net. In the process I discovered this quote from someone in comments on another site, BehindtheName.com. And I discovered this French song which is mildly appropriate but does make me appear to be an airhead. 🙂 The other comments weren’t as flattering, for full disclosure.

Have you heard this song by Emilie Simon? What are your go-to character naming sites?

Lise, the unhinger


The comment, followed by the full lyrics in French and English:

I’ve loved this name ever since I heard the French song “Lise” by Emilie Simon. It goes:

Lise prend des airs
Qui déstabilisent
Les valises de Lise
Sont pleines d’air

Lise sounds so sweet and beautiful. Reminds me of Elise, another name I love, but I prefer Lise to Elise. Lise is adorable. 🙂

— Anonymous User  7/3/2009
English translation
Lise puts on airs
that unhinge
Lise’s bags
are full of airWhat do you want me to tell her
She does everything askew
She works backwards
With her airs of a Marquise (noble)

Lise’s verses
Read around a glass
(Read around a glass)
Read around a glass
(Read around…)

She doesn’t lack air
You have to read
One or two of her verses
Light like a breeze

Lise, she never acquired
Your heart, She breaks it
Your soul, She loses you
In writing her verses

Lise’s verses
Read around a glass
( Lise’s verses
Read around a glass)
Lise’s verses
Read around a glass
(Lise’s…)

Lise, a peculiar girl
She turns backwards
She’s not so submissive
She makes you change your manner

Lise, disguises her verses
So as to not be understood
So as to not be taken
for a simple person

Lise’s verses
Read around a glass
(Lise’s verses
Read around a glass)
Lise’s verses
Read around a glass
(Read around…
…Lise’s)

Original (French)

Lise prend des airs
Qui déstabilisent
Les valises de Lise
Sont pleines d’airQue veux-tu que je lui dise
Elle fait tout de travers
Elle fonctionne à l’envers
Sous ses airs de marquises

Les vers de Lise
Se lisent autour d’un verre
(Se lisent autour d’un verre)
Les vers de Lise
Se lisent autour d’un verre
(Se lisent autour…)

Elle ne manque pas d’air
Il faudrait que tu lises
Un ou deux de ses vers
Légers comme une brise

Lise, elle n’est jamais acquise
Ton cœur, elle te le brise
Ton âme, elle te la perd
En écrivant ses vers

Les vers de Lise
Se lisent autour d’un verre
(Les vers de Lise
Se lisent autour d’un verre)
Les vers de Lise
Se lisent autour d’un verre
(De Lise…)

Lise, une fille singulière
Elle te tourne à l’envers
Elle n’est pas si soumise
Elle te fait changer d’air

Lise, elle déguise ses vers
Pour ne pas être comprise
Pour ne pas être prise
Pour une terre à terre

Les vers de Lise
Se lisent autour d’un verre
(Les vers de Lise
Se lisent autour d’un verre)
Les vers de Lise
Se lisent autour d’un verre
(Se lisent autour…
…de Lise)

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