1. Welcome to the Fantasy Writing Forums. Register Now to join us.

I need city names.

Discussion in 'World Building' started by Estruna, May 11, 2017.

  1. Estruna

    Estruna New Member

    I am creating my own world and my world has six different land masses. Those are going to be the six countries, divided between two different species.
    I have the country names sorted out, I just need five different major cities for each 'country'. Here are the country names if it would help you.


    Thank you so much! :)
    Foah and Reaver like this.
  2. Reaver

    Reaver Kwisatz Haderach Moderator

    Foah and Estruna like this.
  3. Try splitting up names of real places that sound good to you into syllables, and then combining them in different ways.

    Maybe if you worked out a kind of theme to base names in each country around, and thought of sounds that suggested that theme...
    Last edited: May 11, 2017
    Foah likes this.
  4. NeenaDiHope

    NeenaDiHope Acolyte


    Just some off the top of my head. I like making up unusual names. :)
    Feel free to use all or none as you see fit ;)
    Foah likes this.
  5. Seira

    Seira Minstrel

    Personally I really hate names with lots of apostrophe's in them it looks amateurish to me and like someone is trying to hard to be unique. Firstly, think where your city is and what language they speak there. I personally use Google map and zoom into towns and villages in Europe and list names. Then I muddle them up. You can also use google Translator.
  6. NeenaDiHope

    NeenaDiHope Acolyte

    You're welcome to put a dash in instead of an apostrophe. There are cities and towns dotting Europe that have one or two dashed in them. [emoji846]
  7. Foah

    Foah Troubadour

    Before I add my two cents, I just felt the need to address the quote above. Personal differences are common, most welcome, and the very base for discussion in all things, but you should definitely refrain from thinly veiled stabs like this. A good reply should never be met with being called an amateur who, by implication of your tone, tries hard and fails. If you disapprove of advice or opinion, it is very much for the good of the many if you make valid points against the advice to further the discussion. However, in your reply you merely threw two uncalled for stabs without further explaining why, in this case, apostrophes are so bad. If you think it's amateurish, then explain why you would advice against it. If you think it makes a creator of such names appear "try-hard", again, explain why. Make a quick run through your post in the future, and make sure they're nothing like your quoted post above again.

    Back to the topic.

    Names have history. They always had, and they always will have. Events, geography and people relevant to events are usually the base of a place's name. You say that you want 5ish important cities for each kingdom, and to that I would suggest that you make up events, people or draw inspiration from the surrounding location to base the city on.

    Your countries' names seem made-from-scratch, and you might want the cities to follow cue, or you might not. A great trading city by the rivermouth might be called something like Port Velvet, King's Inlet, or Goldwater. You get the point, just base the name on some history of the place, and/or it's purpose. If you want to make the name from scratch, then scratch anything previously written, unless you'd like to fiddle about with appellations, e.g. having a closely knit title accompanied by the name. Grahblargargle, bay of gold, you know.

    To make it more complicated; Places, especially now that you mention that you're dealing with nations, are more often than not held in very high regard namewise. Kings and people's heroes will have streets and squares named after them. However, the bigger things, like a major city in this case, may lean more towards the nation's and people's history rather than an old governing king. Rarely is an old king, even one of an unbroken and still standing line, important enough to be the base of a name for a city. In these cases, focus on events or legends that will add to the unity of a nation. How would a nation react to a new city being named King Mike's City of Awesome, and how would it react to that same city instead being named Stronghome in honor of the frontlines of that company X years ago that fended off raiding parties in the nearby villages until the last man?
    Relothius, NeenaDiHope and Rkcapps like this.
  8. Rkcapps

    Rkcapps Sage

    Top post, Foah. I hadn't considered naming city/places like this. I will from now on.
  9. FifthView

    FifthView Istar

    The use of apostrophes for naming cities and countries is one of those perennial red flags mentioned by some "How-to" manuals, even by writers whose advice I tend to value. I have something of a knee-jerk reaction myself—but, I don't know if this is because I really have a problem with apostrophes in names or if I've merely read, many times, "Danger, Will Robinson!" in those manuals by those writers. Heh. I do vaguely recall recently seeing just such a name used by an author I read, in some blurb I think, and thinking, What? But then immediately not caring. (Which might explain why I don't remember the precise circumstance of seeing that.)

    I suspect most readers wouldn't care either, whatever the critics say. Although, maybe if it was overused, like half of all city and country names, that might seem odd to more readers. But I don't know.

    I personally like two-word names for cities. One of the quick examples I created in another thread, where I combine syllables from two existing ancient cities, was Tum Datu. I don't think I'd make a large number of cities with two-word names; I like variation, because it shows (hopefully) a kind of broad, deep variation in the world. But with something like that, you could also create Tum Bisa and Tum Morichi, with the implication that "Tum" might mean city in that culture (or hold, castle, or whatever.) Similarly, there could be Fin Datu and Namma Datu. Or whatever. (But when I imagine the type of culture for these particular names, I feel an ancient culture, pre-historic perhaps, or circa 2nd or 3rd BCE.) So maybe this is just another peg in the list of potential approaches.
    Foah likes this.
  10. NeenaDiHope

    NeenaDiHope Acolyte

    Not to seem obtuse or a neophyte, I thought I throw this out for thought.
    Yanbu' al-Bahr
    Qal'ah-ye Ayyub
    Be'er Sheva

    These are all cities in countries from Canada to the Middle East. Just a few. [emoji6]

    As a fiction writer you can be as outlandish as you like. It all boils down to what sounds right to you, what feels right to you and are you happy with the results. Most writers write for themselves, it's just an added bonus if other enjoy your work as much as you do.
    Do what you love and love what you do, its as simple as that.
  11. K.S. Crooks

    K.S. Crooks Inkling

    I like to look for names of towns and villages no longer occupied (ghost towns). Depending on the type of setting you're dealing with you can try ghost town in New Zealand, Canada, United States or other locations more recently colonized. Another option is to look for old names for places such as Mumbai used to be Bombay, Hồ ChÃ* Minh was Saigon and of course Constantinople is now Istanbul. A quick look can be done here: List of city name changes - Wikipedia

Share This Page