Inkarnate

This next map creator I do not know a lot about, but it looks like it has a lot of potential. Unlike the previous two map creators, Inkarnate, works through a subscription model.

The free model is for personal use only and has 100+ assets to use for making your map on a space that is 1024 x 768. It is unclear what the measurement is, but perhaps it is measured in pixels making that a decently sized map to work with. Regardless, it is a nice way to test out the software and find out if it will work for you or if you need to keep looking for something else that will work better for your needs.

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Babies Front and Center

It may not be the most exhaustive source of baby names, but Baby Center, a site dedicated to all parts of having babies from conception to naming, does have a few lists you might want to check out. With lists such as “Most popular baby names through history” and “Baby names inspired by Shakespeare” you have a lot to choose between and a lot of names that you might find of use. I think my favorite list is “Baby names inspired by military heroes” which lists the names of military heroes, both male and female over the years of our country, names like Jane for Jane Thomas from the time of the Revolutionary War who prevented an ambush by passing on important intelligence, saving the lives of many, and Omar for army general, Omar Nelson Bradley from the time of World War II.

The site has nearly 270,000 names, which is nothing to sneeze at. Baby Center has all of the US popular name data available going back to 1880 when they first started collecting and making that info available. Having this data available can be a very useful tool for authors who wish to pick names that were common at the time of the story they are writing.

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Azgaar Fantasy Map Generator

This one was a pretty interesting one. The Azgaar Fantasy Map Generator randomly creates a map and you have a lot of choices of what kind of map it displays. For fun I turned them all on in the map above. The same map only has labels and states turned on in the map below which is stark contrast, but give you a pretty good idea of the vast differences that can be made by just turning on or off different types of maps.

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Bumper Nameberry Crop

There is a lot to look at when it comes to Nameberry. You can pick the type of data you want from a lot of choices. From the most popular names of last year to some rather unique names that are a lot less common, there is something for every parent looking for ideas on naming their children. The question becomes, what is the value to the authors in their audience? Let’s take a look at some things here.

Popular Names

As with most baby name sites, it has a popular names section. This one is different in a couple of ways. The first way is that it only has a list of the most popular names from last year which makes it less valuable for authors writing period pieces or just trying to name characters born before last year.

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Roll for Fantasy Map Creator

After spending some time playing around with this one, I can definitely say that I like it a lot. I created a simple, single large island land mass with some mountains and vegetation.

It’s a little cluttered, but I was trying to show a lot of the different things that can be used in this program rather than actually trying to create a map that will work for my stories.

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Map Making for Authors

Although probably most noted for use with fantasy authors, maps can be a useful tool for any writer. If you are writing a story that takes place in a real place, it’s going to be a lot easier to find a map of it, because if it isn’t real, then you are going to have to design the map yourself. Depending on how detailed you get this can include neighborhoods that don’t exist in cities that do or even blueprints to houses and other buildings if you need the layout for your character’s home, school, place of business or anything else.

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Huggies & Baby Names

This one came as a complete surprise. It’s not your usual resource for baby names and it doesn’t have as many names as websites dedicated to the topic, but Huggies has some pretty interesting lists that you might consider taking a look at.

With lists like: 10 Resources for Finding That Perfect Baby Name & 8 Tips for Choosing a Unique Baby Name (That Worked for Us!) you have more than a few things to consider if you go to this site looking at baby names. There might be something there that you want to use in determining the names of your characters.

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Our Baby Namer

By far my favorite baby name website is Our Baby Namer. The name is cute and easy to remember and that’s just the first of it’s many features.

It has the Social Security Database info from 1880 on as well as making the entire popularity history of a name accessible and easy to locate on one page. You can find information on names that don’t make the top 1,000 or like my own name, don’t make it all the time. Beginnings and endings of names are searchable, so if you want all your female characters in a family to have names ending in -ina, this is easy to find on this database.

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