View Full Version : Need help naming an alien species in my book....
February 3rd, 2006, 12:06 PM
I'm writing a science fiction trilogy right now where there is only one alien species, but they're energy beings that humans have joined with biologically, essentially becoming symbionts with one another. These energy beings more or less give their human counter parts extraordinary super powers.
At anyrate, I haven't really named them yet. I'm really struggling with a good name for them, moreso because now I'm going to make the title of my trilogy whatever I call these aliens. Currently my thought is to name them something based around internal power, be it mystical or philosophical or scientific or anything really. I'm open to ideas. Currently I've nicknamed them the "Chi," and while I'm somewhat fond of that name, it would make a terrible title for a science fiction trilogy.
Any thoughts? I realize this is an odd question to be asking, but I'm getting kind of desperate for ideas. I'm terrible with names, be it names of characters, species, locations, or titles for my books. Very annoying.
February 3rd, 2006, 12:42 PM
What planet is the alien home world called? Say if they're from the planet Bob, they may be called Bobdians. Might also think about making up a slur/slang name for them also for characters who don't like the aliens to use.
February 3rd, 2006, 01:09 PM
Well, Chi is what the slur name would be, but in terms of what the planet is called, it'd go by in the book whatever the Human's named it, not what the aliens named it.
Also, the planet really isn't a factor in the majority of the story. In fact, the planet is likely to have a completely different name than the Chi, so that nobody makes a connection with the two.
So yeah, it's a pickle.
February 3rd, 2006, 02:14 PM
Since chi stems from Taoism, you might want to give the above link a look see for inspirations.
February 3rd, 2006, 02:27 PM
Someone from Mars would be a Martian, why not Marsling? But someone from Earth is an Earthling, why not Earthtian? We refer to ourselves as Humans or Homo Sapiens. Would animals or plants from Earth be referred to as Earthlings also since they come from Earth? My point is that there doesn't seem to be anything consistent about the naming of things. So the goal seems to be a "cool" word, easily pronounced, easily slanged, and uniquely identifiable.
I think of energy beings as shapeless, diaphanous, insubstantial creatures with ever-changing, pulsing tendrils of themselves extended like an amoeba. Plugging the adjectives from your own personal description of these beings into a thesaurus should give you some ideas. For instance, the DiChi (diaphanous+Chi), or Amoeboids (amoeba-like), or The Shapeless Ones, or Chinergy (Chi+energy). Personally, I think Chi is a perfectly good name. In slang, the Chidawgs. The title of the book could be "The Chi Gods of Chimeron." Mond.
February 3rd, 2006, 06:03 PM
There were energy based beings in a novel I abandoned. I called them Upas. They were consumate trouble makers.
February 3rd, 2006, 06:18 PM
Do they have a unique appearance? You could give them the nickname of 'sparks' if they've got a bright electric sort of look.
Chi's simple enough, but maybe "Chii"? Or "Chya"?
February 3rd, 2006, 09:15 PM
I'm assuming you chose the nickname Chi for its metaphysical energy meaning. Personally I like it as the name for the aliens. However, if you feel like going with that concept but with a less well known variation I could recommend "Ashé/Axé (Ah-shay)" from the Yoruba, "Baraka" from the Arabic, "Heka" from the Egyptian, "Nyama" from the Mande, "Oni" which I believe is Algonquin, but I'm not sure.
February 3rd, 2006, 09:29 PM
Baby name sites are remarkably useful for me when I'm looking for a name. I type in a specific meaning I want to find a symbolic name, and I may mess with the spellings to invent something new. You can Google a bunch of these name sites up, or you can go to www.babynames.com (cough).
February 4th, 2006, 01:35 AM
Someone from Mars would be a Martian, why not Marsling? But someone from Earth is an Earthling, why not Earthtian? We refer to ourselves as Humans or Homo Sapiens. Would animals or plants from Earth be referred to as Earthlings also since they come from Earth?
One question you should be asking is whether the name is an insult or not. A large sci fi game that I am involved in occupants from the above are not to be called Marsies and Earthicans because the terms are insults.
Taking this a step further, the issue is raised in "Naked to the Stars" by Gordon Dickson where some humanoid like aliens are given one name by the diplomatic corp type humans and another by the military, who use it openly.
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