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Shop talk (anything and everything on writing)

Soft paw corn


Naming your characters can be a tricky business. In fact I’ve been known to stall on the first paragraph of a story just because I can’t make my mind up what to call my hero/heroine/the dog.

The tried and tested method is of course using your porn name. (Porn, wtf? ed). I got myself into a bit of trouble when I suggested this the other day on a blog run by a rather earnest religious type. Trouble is, you can’t delete the remarks you make. So, I think I should, as the politicians say, clarify my position.

This kind of name is just a way of giving yourself a rather memorable alias and it just so happens that it nearly always sounds like something you’d see in a porn mag. (Not that I’ve ever read any). Try it. You take the name of your first pet, as your first name, and the name of the street or house you were born in as your surname. My porn name is Winston Ross. Which is not so bad, but a mate of mine confessed to me that hers was Buster Cliffe. My husband’s is Shep Harborough.

If you don’t want to use this method, and frankly I can’t see Tolstoy running with it (although his porn name would be Laska Asnaya, which I think is rather nice) you can always use the US states for the first name, plus Smith or Jones (or any verb, actually), for the surname. Indiana Jones and Dakota Fanning are already taken, but Arkansas Smith, Missouri Jones, Arizona Palpitating and Alaska Running, are all there for the taking. I make no charge.

Let me know what you come up with.

PS I reckon Shakespeare’s porn name would be Crab Stratford. (Exit quickly, there’s a bear right behind you, ed)

PPS My husband has now informed me that his first pet was called Bimbo. I have absolutely nothing to say to that.


About elainecanham

I started blogging because I'm a writer, and I thought I ought to. Now I realise that I blog because I like to; even when I can't think of much to say.


27 thoughts on “Soft paw corn

  1. Um. Bambi McConnell.

    I’ll get my coat.

    Posted by Tara Sparling | June 3, 2014, 2:12 pm
  2. I’ll pass on password words, but with that said, it kind of works, depending on the genre that is pornogrifried.

    Posted by MikeW | June 3, 2014, 5:49 am
  3. Hi Elaine:)! I find your blog truly inspiring! So I had to nominate you for the “Very inspirational blogger” award. If you wish to accept, you can visit this link for details:
    And even if you’re not too keen on awards, its all right. It has been a pleasure knowing you:). Keep on inspiring!!

    Posted by Nida S. | June 3, 2014, 5:14 am
    • Thanks Nida, that’s really kind of you, I’m chuffed to bits tht you shd nominate me, but I think I probably will pass. I always fall down on the facts about myself bit. Thanks again.

      Posted by elainecanham | June 3, 2014, 7:39 am
  4. King Magoon? I think I’ll stick with my own naming conventions… 😉

    Posted by dirksayers | June 2, 2014, 3:44 pm
    • Oh you can’t lose that one. That’s a character that rules over the dark interior of some South American jungle. A sort of Heart of Darkness meets Mosquito Coast. Possibly with an eyepatch…

      Posted by elainecanham | June 2, 2014, 4:16 pm
    • I think King Magoon is straight out of Raymond Chandler.

      Posted by Jools | June 2, 2014, 5:32 pm
    • With a name like that in Chandler, he’d have to be some kind of leader of the underworld (sorry, Dirk!)

      Posted by elainecanham | June 2, 2014, 6:25 pm
  5. I love my new name- Cricket Ormond!

    Posted by foundfootageblog | June 2, 2014, 4:02 am
  6. Pussycat Whaka here. This is truly according to your method, and it needs to be pointed out that the “Wh” in NZ Maori is pronounced as an “F”.

    Posted by Bruce Goodman | June 1, 2014, 8:51 pm
    • I’m sorry, this made me snigger so much I spilt my tea. If you ever want a new career, Pussycat, you’ve got the name all ready.

      Posted by elainecanham | June 1, 2014, 9:04 pm
    • I won’t tell you what noises came from my nose when reading your comment while drinking some fruit juice. It was not a pretty sight.

      Posted by First Night Design | June 1, 2014, 9:10 pm
  7. Witchy Hermitage commenting here: laughed all the way through!

    Posted by First Night Design | June 1, 2014, 5:09 pm
  8. I’m not sure Muttley Knutsford has quite the ring needed for me to be taken seriously Elaine and we all know I’m a very serious person.
    xxx Massive Hugs xxx

    Posted by davidprosser | June 1, 2014, 4:26 pm
  9. Ginger Bridget – which I think is rather promising, No?

    Posted by Jools | June 1, 2014, 4:06 pm

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