General Question

eckoin's avatar

Need a last name for a character - any ideas?

Asked by eckoin (7points) May 1st, 2009

What would sound good with Yana? I need a last name, but I can’t really think of “the one.” Any suggestions? Thanks :)

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34 Answers

The_Compassionate_Heretic's avatar

What sort of story is it?
What sort of background does this character have?

eckoin's avatar

It’s actually not one of the major characters, but it’s a young Eastern European university student who’s traveling America at the time.

janbb's avatar

Yana Gregorian?

eckoin's avatar

Yeah, right now I’m deciding between making it a stereotypical Russian kind of last name, or one of the more ambiguous (i.e. sounds like it’s European of some sort). Any ideas for an ambiguous type? And, thanks guys :)

janbb's avatar

Yana Vashti sounds like a cool, ambiguous name to me.

justwannaknow's avatar

Yana Montana? LOL!

Offero's avatar

Yana Blagojevich fourth half cousin to the deposed Govenor of Illinois, (unless of course it is a period piece.)

gimmedat's avatar


(the real last name of the security guard at the high school I attended)

aprilsimnel's avatar


In Russian, the feminine form of the family name is used for a woman’s surname, if I’m not mistaken.

Jeruba's avatar

@janbb, IIRC, Vashti is a Biblical name, the name of the first wife of King Ahasuerus, preceding Esther.

Ok, now Googling to validate memory. Yup! Score another point for some 1950s Sunday School teacher.

When you choose a name, be aware that some readers may assume intentional symbolism and connotation, and be sure you are okay with all such possibilities. Google is a fabulous resource for this. It’s why I make up names that get zero hits on Google.

Supacase's avatar

Hadrovic is the last name of a Croatian friend of mine. Yana Hadrovic?

janbb's avatar

@Jeruba Thanks for jogging my memory. I still think it sounds like a cool name for a character.

Introverted_Leo's avatar

I could suggest lots of names, but maybe you could look at some of these and see if you like any of them that you could use or tweak to your liking. : )

Jeruba's avatar

@janbb, it is!—especially one that resonates in some way with the story of Esther and the castoff queen whose place she took.

Introverted_Leo's avatar

I was thinking of Jakovavich, but that actually has one head-on hit on Google, dangit.

The_Compassionate_Heretic's avatar

I think you should watch one of the hockey playoff games going on now. There’s all sorts of awesome Euro names to go around.

miasmom's avatar

Yana Bancroft

janbb's avatar

Yana Banana

live_rose's avatar

Mavi . . .I used to use that as a last name for my characters

fireside's avatar

Well, Yana is a variant on Joana which is the feminine for of the Hebrew name of John.
But it also means “bear” in Cherokee.

I like Vashti, but that is Persian in origin, so may not fit.

How about Yana Petrov?

bright_eyes00's avatar

I think Yana would sound best with a Russian last name. Yana sounds like Yulia (form of Julia) the name of one of the singers in the band t.A.T.u. her last name is Volkova. So for your character a last name that ends with an ‘A’ might do well. @fireside—really good suggestion. Yana Petrov seems to fit together nicely.

YOu might want to avoid something like Jovanovich only because it has too many ‘ah’ sounds. It would sound weird. Or at least thats my opinion.

Have you heard of the novel Nightwatch? Daywatch? Dusk Watch? They are written by Sergei Lukyanenko…the only reason I mention this is because there are a lot of really good names for characters in it. Yana just made me think about that.

fireside's avatar

@bright_eyes00 – now that you mention the “a” at the end, I like Yana Petrova

Jeruba's avatar

Browse for names here.

bright_eyes00's avatar

@fireside – i agree…that sounds a lot better

Jack79's avatar

First of all it should be Jana (pronounced Yana). I knew a Jana Schaefer when I was in the DDR, but I assume you mean further east than that. What sort of person is she like? I could come up with an Easter Egg name for you if you want. Or even a real one.

Just off the top of my head for now: Jana Nikiforovic (was the surname of a cop that stopped me in Bosnia and actually treated me nice rather than shoot me or something).

gailcalled's avatar

Part of my family, from the Ukraine, has the name Kuriloff. (Stress on the “il.”)

TheKNYHT's avatar

Yana Debrenov

Strauss's avatar

Yana Bigorsky

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