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Literary Baby Names in the News

names from books

By Abby Sandel

Let’s talk literary baby names.

Jennifer Love Hewitt’s new son has a name borrowed from one of the hottest sources of baby name inspiration today: the 1960 novel To Kill a Mockingbird.

Noah Wyle’s new daughter has a Mockingbird middle. Her first is associated with a beloved children’s author, too, whose most famous works date to the early twentieth century, as well as with the heroine of J.D. Salinger’s famous story Franny and Zooey.

The current Number 1 name for girls comes from Jane Austen’s Emma, first published in 1815.

Even in our age of modern inventions like Jaxson and Skylar, plenty of parents stick to the classics – in baby names and literature, too.

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Taylor Swift-Inspired Baby Names

Music baby names

By Abby Sandel

Taylor Swift’s latest video is a who’s who of Hollywood stars, up-and-coming singers, and supermodels galore.

“Bad Blood” stars Taylor as a sort of James Bond/Wonder Woman/Katniss Everdeen warrior extraordinaire. After her fellow BFF-spy betrays her, she enrolls in assassin school and assembles a crack team of allies to help her take down her nemesis.

It doesn’t sound like inspiration for baby names. But the cast and characters answer to an eclectic bunch of global, daring names. One of these might be just right for your daughter.

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celebrity baby names

By Abby Sandel, Appellation Mountain

Need fresh inspiration for your baby’s name? Take a cue from celebrity parents, and look to the sky.

This week, actress Leonor Varela and her producer husband Lucas Akoskin welcomed daughter Luna Mae Akoskin. Luna joins big brother Matteo. Reality television’s Yandy Smith, of Love & Hip Hop fame, and Mendeecees Harris announced their daughter’s name, too: Skylar Smith Harris, a little sister for Omere.

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deja vu names

By Abby Sandel, AppellationMountain

I know that Hollywood isn’t one great big playdate, with A-list moms and reality starlets alike pushing their designer strollers through the park together. There’s no reason to think that Blue Ivy Carter and Tennessee Toth will attend the same preschool, or that Tori Spelling and Angelina Jolie are trading tips on managing big families.

Which is a long way of saying that of course sometimes one set of high-profile parents will choose the same name that some other headline-worthy couple chose.

To spectators, those repeats can seem significant. Tabloids accuse Blake Lively of stealing a Garner-Affleck baby name. We declare names The Next Big Thing if it pops up on lots of celeb birth announcements.

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By Linda Rosenkrantz

Of course we all want our kids to be winners. So how about giving him or her a leg up by starting life with an achievement-award name? If you want to look at it aspirationally, a great variety of bases are covered here—from science to sports to literature to film to cartooning and even to blogging. (We’ve skipped the almost-too-obvious Oscar, Tony and Emmy.) Some very usable award names, and you might find one that relates to your own field of interest.

Agatha Award—a mystery fiction award named for Agatha Christie and given to crime writers in her “traditional” genre—in other words no explicit sex or excessive gore. .

Angus Book Award is for UK authors of teenage fiction, presented by the Angus Council of Scotland.

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