What Do Writers Name Their Babies?
Holden Caulfield. Atticus Finch. Scarlett O'Hara. Hermione Granger. Bella Swan. The names writers choose for their characters are a major source of inspiration for contemporary baby namers. (See the impressive popularity graphs for these names: Holden, Atticus, Scarlett, Bella.) But when it comes to naming their own children, what do writers choose? We investigated the baby names of some contemporary writers to find out.
Edwidge Danticat (pictured): This Haitian-American writer, who recently won a MacArthur Foundation "Genius Grant," has daughters named Mira and Leila. As she explains in Brother, I'm Dying, Mira is named for her father.
Stephenie Meyer: We can't stop talking about the romantic vintage names the Twilight author gave her characters. Her real-life children? Gabe, Seth and Eli. (She has said that, after struggling to name her character Isabella/"Bella," she went ahead and used the name she'd been saving for a daughter.)
Jonathan Safran Foer and Nicole Kraus: After the novelists named their first son Sasha, they've kept the name of their second child private.
Ayelet Waldman and Michael Chabon: He won the Pulitzer; she caused a ruckus with this sentence: "I love my husband more than I love my children." Together, they gave life to Sophie, Ezekial "Zeke" Napoleon, Ida-Rose "Rosie," and Abraham Wolf.
A few observations: Jane is the most popular middle name (with two writers choosing it), while Oct- is the surprising most popular first syllable (belonging to two babies, or three writers).
What else do you notice? What names are your favorites? What did your favorite writer name her babies?