Writers - Saving Names

Hi, does anyone save names they found interesting in Obsidian or other PKM software? If so, in what way? I haven’t found a really good system for organising this and keeping it manageable- tried ios Notes, Blogger, Notion so far :3 I guess Notion was the best since I could tag the name with genre/gender etc but it seemed a bit like overkill per name

Moved from “Share & Showcase” to “Knowledge Management”.

I put them in a list in a single note, along with a mention of where & when I heard or saw it and sometimes a thought on how I might use it and/or a tag or tags. If I have a bunch of names that I think would mainly serve the main purpose I might pull them into a themed note.

For names that I invent — mostly wordplay-based ones — I give each its own note unless they most appropriately fit into a themed note.

I just have a note inside an Inspiration folder. It has a #characters tag, and it is simply called Name Ideas. It is simply a list of names. If the origin of the name is important, I write that down, too.

Now, I don’t have a big list. If I did have a big list of names, maybe I’d want to use a Name Ideas folder inside Inspiration instead. Then, every note could be a name. And if I wanted to be really neat and organized with my names, I could give them some tags. #male, #female, #villain, #good, #evil, and so on and so forth. Actually, I could probably split those tags into metadata. Inside a name note:

gender: both
connotations: good
origin: Japanese word for 'Bright' (明るい -> akarui)
notes: A good name for a rambunctious spider monkey. Might use for the main guy.
possible-roles: protagonist, sidekick, comic-relief, mentor

And then I could have a nice dataview table displaying all my names. Neat, organized, convenient. You could try this method if you have a loooot of names to keep track of.

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Hi, thanks for sharing!

Thank you for the reply! I like your tag suggestion. I haven’t tried dataview yet, but def something to consider

I think you should totally try out dataview at some point. When I started Obsidian, I was very intimidated by dataview. “I’m a writer, not a nerd”, I thought. But I tried it anyway, and I expected to hate it for being complicated—but it’s actually just like Notion. And instead of making things more complicated, it made writing a loooot easier for me. Better than Notion, in my opinion.

But that could just be me. Still, I think you should try it out—you might like it, you might not like it. But if you like it, it could make the writing process a lot faster in the future :grinning:.

You may have already considered this, but another way to keep track of the origin or context where a name idea occurred is to have a field like Nomination that you store name ideas in within the note you were working with when the idea struck. For example, in one note you might have:

Nomination:: Bob

Then, in another note you might have frontmatter like:

Nomination: [Alice, Melvin, Winslow]

And to gather and sort names with links to their source, you could have a dataview query like:

table without id Nomination, rows.file.link as Source where Nomination
group by Nomination
flatten Nomination
sort Nomination asc

Of course, you could also do something like:

Nomination:: [[Robert]]

And you could store the content and metadata in the note itself. Names are fun.

Ooh, that’s a cool idea, thanks for sharing!

Makes me wonder if there’s a way to ‘sync’ a Nomination field in a name note, too. Like, a note called How to Make Cheese has Nomination:: [[Bob]] and the Note Bob automatically gets a field Nomination-source:: [[How to Make Cheese]].

So then the source is not just in the table, but in the note itself.

And then some Nomination sources could be added manually to names if they’re not notes. For example, I saw the name ‘Gwen Rayburn’ in a random math assignment. I thought Rayburn was a pretty cool last name, so I could have made a note for it and given it Nomination-source:: Algebra II - Natural Growth and Decay.

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I like to keep track of names, I have a simple method which works well for me.

As I’m writing notes and if a name of someone relevant/important gets mentioned, I simply add the tag ‘#personality’ to the document, either in the header or inline, depending on the context (whether the whole document involves that person, or whether just a part of the document involves them).

I don’t know lol, I’ve looked at Dataview, and I can’t figure how it will help me in my organisation. Maybe one day! :smile:

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That’s how I feel about it! But sounds like it’s worth checking out, now that I’m more comfy with Obsidian… thanks for the recommendation!

Um this went over my head tbh, but I’ll come back to it after I’ve learnt dataview :smiley:


Oh I like that, and it kind of avoids duplication in another place

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