I can never look at this comic without thinking about the Voltaire tune. Laurel and I saw the dude at Dragon*Con a few years back, and let me tell you, the guy is pretty splenderful live. If you get the chance, make it a point to see one of his shows.

Names are hard for fantasists. You want to evoke the spirit of your character in a few short syllables, and you’ve got to squeeze in culture and gender and class and personality. I get Tolkien in the back of my head too, and I freeze up remembering how the Old Norse name Gandalfr incorporates the words gandr meaning “wand”, “staff” or (especially in compounds) “magic” and álfr “elf,” and all at once I’m too aware that I’m a hack by comparison to choose anything at all. It suddenly feels a bit hollow to name your half-orc barbarian Frar because “it sounds right,” you know?

Have any of you guys ever really nailed a character name? Let’s hear it in the comments, because I could clearly use the help!


GET YOUR SCHWAG ON! Want a piece of Handbook-World to hang on you wall? Then you’ll want to check out the “Hero” reward tier on the The Handbook of Heroes Patreon. Each monthly treasure hall will bring you prints, decals, buttons, bookmarks and more! There’s even talk of a few Handbook-themed mini-dungeons on the horizon. So hit the link, open up that treasure chest, and see what loot awaits!