I have a certain form that I use as a basis for creating names for places, people, and things in my world of Eir and Dannorlan.
Its essentially a form of corrupted English with influences from specific languages to give it a consistent "feel".

For the northern parts of Dannorlan, I use names that are based on old English and German words. The southern areas are populated by different cultures, and are based on Anglicized Arabic/Persian/Hindi, at least on my official computer version, where I keep all the names in their original form, rather than "normalizing" them to a certain language, like what the Europeans always did in their colonies.


As an example for how it works, I may want to name a large historic fortress.

Well, this fortress is in an area ruled by the Lords of Angar, whose language is more akin to English. In this world, defensive structures are known as castles, holds, havens (safe places), forts, and other names. To identify this landmark as a fortification, I chose to give it the title "hold".

The fortress was originally constructed under the orders of, let's say, the now deceased grand duke named Varres the Great. So, whose hold is it? Its Varres'. So I call it The Hold of Varres.

Well, that's a name, sure, but people don't use those type of long titles for centuries - they give it a nickname, shorten it, or whatever. So that is what I do. Now the name changes to "Varres' Hold". But its a bit of a jumble so we'll just say "Varreshold".

Finally, the language is supposed to be English-ish, not English, so I can corrupt it a bit to give it some flavour.

"Hold" becomes "holt". A tiny bit of corruption in this case but it sounds more "exotic".

Therefor the end result is "Varresholt".

For a different fort called a "haven", named after Lord Muirian, I could call it Muirhaven, and possibly corrupt that to Muirharran. So, rather than Castle Muirian, I have Muirharran. Sounds rather fantasy-ish, and appears to belong to a culture that is identifiably not fairy-tale English.

For something different, let's say we have three main characters for our epic fantasy novel: Christopher, Jennifer, and William. If we want to make them sound less common, but can't think of enough names, we can simply corrupt the names. Keep a similar sound, but change it.

Christopher can become Kirstov, Jennifer can become Jeneive, and William can become Ilian. Sounds more interesting to me, at least (I'm not saying you shouldn't use the original names though).

I do this for anything - rivers, mountains, forests, water bodies, villages, titles, even simple names of people.

I just change the organization and naming conventions a bit.

Lastly, I'll use Dannorlan as an example. What does it sound like? Quite a bit like The North Lands. I couldn't think of a name, so I called it what it was, geographically speaking, and warped that for my placeholder name.


Well, that's my sample of a naming method.