By January 2, 2013

Y’all know how I’m always on the search for the perfect name, right?  I can’t wrap my head around a character until she or he has the perfect moniker.

So we had this long discussion over the holidays about the name of my young adult protagonist.  In my head, she looks a lot like Camilla Belle in When A Stranger Calls.  And since I love, love, LOVE the name Camilla Belle, I decided to use the first name and come up with an equally compelling last night.

Right now I’m calling her Camilla Snow.  My detractors, who shall remain nameless (Lucas and Leanne), argue that it sounds too made up and that Snow is too uncommon.  But I kind of like made up sounding names because I think they’re memorable.  Like Veronica Mars.  Stephanie Plum.  Atticus Finch.  Holly Golightly.  Jack Sparrow.   Hannibal Lecter.  Donnie Darko.  Gilbert Grape.  Harry Lime.  See what I mean?  Memorable.

Any suggestions for a unique/compelling last name to go with Camilla?  Or an awesome first name to go with Belle?  Or just strange names in general?

Join the discussion 43 Comments

  • Hollie Meadors says:

    Camilla Winthrop

  • Jessica Williams says:

    Camilla Rose- that might still sound kind of fake though.

  • Patricia Stephens says:

    My Great grandmother’s name was Evalena Humm….I have always thought that it was a great character name, In fact, there are quite a few interessting names in my family history…. my dad’s father…Walker Lane…. if only I had had uncles Trotter and Brick…(sigh)

    • Amanda says:

      Evalena Humm may be one of the BEST names ever! I LOVE it! Walker Lane is equally fabulous. You do have some great names in your family.

      • Patricia Stephens says:

        My father is one of 16 children and I named my son after him, Reece. I also have an aunt Enzie, and uncle name Ishmael Worth (but he was called Wayne) My great grand father was Cassius Clay Lane.

  • Hollie Meadors says:

    I know! I am thinking about her backstory already… :0)

  • Morgen says:

    I’ve always loved the name Lilly or Lillian. Though, Lillian Belle, sounds like an elderly woman from the south.

    • Amanda says:

      Yes, but that could be a great back story. She’s named for her grandmother, Lillian, but thinks it sounds too old-fashioned so she’s called Lilly Belle. 🙂 Old-sounding names are really popular right now.

  • Jeannie Goad Hancock says:

    Camilla DeFore, her ancestors were French and she was named after her great grandmother LOL

  • Joanne says:

    She looks like an Annabel to me ….how about a nod to Poe and call her Anna Belle Lee? Or change the last name’s spelling to Leigh?

  • Danielle says:

    Camilla Lucille Knowles

  • Nina says:

    How about Camilla Joules. In the image you chose she kind of looks like a Sarah, Elizabeth, Jacqueline or Clara to me.

    Josephine Belle? Sarah Belle? Mia Belle? Clara Belle? Jacqueline Belle? Jacque Belle? (pronounced the French, or in my case Danish, way “Shaqelin”).

    I had a good friend named Jacqueline De La Motte – That’s a gorgeous name no?

  • Angela says:

    How about Camilla Furia? Camilla is Italian and Furia says something about her character?

  • Margie Heffelbower says:

    Maybe,Camilla Rae or Violet Belle ?

  • Rachel Schneider says:

    I’m a bit of a wench and I’d say if you’re writing it then you pick it ;0) I’m a School Counselor and if you think Snow is too weird, you have not seen the first and last names I’ve seen, lol.

    As long as you don’t go with Starr or Bunny or something else that makes me think of strippers and porn stars, I’d guess you’re probably ok!

    Off my soap box now. I like Snow :0)

  • Debbie Riar says:

    Hi! I had a great great grandmother named “Antoinette Isabella Redford”__ and they called her Bella or Belle. Thought this might interest you as another way to go.
    I just finished “The Kingdom” and ordered “The Prophet”. I really love the atmospheric quality of your books. I belong to the “Rest In Peace Book Club” at Elmwood Cemetery in Memphis Tennessee, and we SO enjoy your work. Elmwood is an old (mid-1800’s) historical cemetery here, full of stories and stones__ Amelia Gray would feel right at home there!
    Debbie Riar

    • Amanda says:

      Thank you so much, Debbie! I really appreciate the kind words. I’m actually familiar with Elmwood Cemetery. I used to live in Memphis and loved it. GREAT city. And what a cool, atmospheric place for a book club!

      Love your great great grandmother’s name, too. So elegant and southern. 🙂

      • Debbie Riar says:

        So nice of you to answer back__I’ve seen the magnitude of your body of work and can’t imagine how you have time to do anything beside write your books, so thank you very much.
        How Cool is it that you used to live in Memphis and that you know of Elmwood! Our R.I.P. book club is discussing “The Kingdom” this coming Wednesday, so my fellow members will be delighted to hear that you used to live here and are familiar with Elmwood. So sorry that we had to lose you to Texas;, but if you ever get back to Memphis, you have a lot of enthusiastic fans at Elmwood.

  • Fayruz says:

    what about Camilla Frost?
    the “s” initial in the surname “Snow”, kind of “stops” the sound flow

    • Amanda says:

      I agree, it needs a ‘harder’ last name, which is why Camilla Belle works so well. I do like Frost and think that’s a good alternative. Thanks!

  • Cheryl Piscopo says:

    How about Camilla Cornwallace? And with right hand raised to God, I have a brilliant name for a male protagonist. When I worked in St. Petersburg, I worked with a woman who had a brother, and his name was Rembrandt Nobel!!

    • Amanda says:

      OMG, Rembrandt Nobel may be the best name I’ve ever heard. Sounds like British nobility, but could definitely work for a Southern gentlemen who comes from an old, established family. I love it!!!

  • t brett says:

    JONNA Belle …. perfect I’m done with that one!

    Now i must be bored but here is a cammile idea for every letter.
    Get back to me at if you pic one of mine!

    CAMMILA Amber?

  • t brett says:

    Oh BTW! My fave to names are Holden Caulfield (catherin the rye) and the best ever is Ignatius Ryley (Confederancy of dunces)

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