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In this case, Bristol. Does it ONLY mean Bristol Palin, or can random characters (mean girls that turn into possible allies) assume this name? It fits into the family naming scheme (places, plus, she's bristly), but not sure about how strong the Palin association is. Or if MG kids would even know or care.
#1 - March 27, 2012, 08:27 AM

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My own MG readers would have no clue who she is...I doubt they've even paid attention to Bristol's mom. Not the newsy types, my kids.  :)
#2 - March 27, 2012, 08:31 AM

by the time your book comes out, the palins may be a foggy memory even for adults. kind of like in the late nineties, if you said "monica" everyone thought of monica lewinsky, even though monica was a more common name than bristol. but now, saying "monica" doesn't bring up images of an infamous blue dress ;)

p.s. of course, i don't think it'll take more than a decade for your book to come out--first example i could think of  :)
#3 - March 27, 2012, 08:35 AM

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I agree that today's MG readers will likely not be aware of Bristol Palin. IMO you're in the clear with this choice.

The principle you raise is a good one, though. There ARE names that belong to only one person (Oprah, Cher, Adolph, Moon, Dweezil, etc.), and if they're ones likely to be recognized by your audience, maybe even the adults in some cases, it might be better not to use them, especially since they'll imply character qualities that you might not be intending.
#4 - March 27, 2012, 08:38 AM
Adventures of Jenna V. Series
Caroline Grade Mysteries
The Journey of Emilie
Anne Bradstreet: America's Puritan Poet
www.marciahoehne.com

My daughter (11) would have no clue who Bristol Palin is.  I, on the other hand, grew up with a neighbor named Bristol, so all my connotations are of a spoiled four year old!
#5 - March 27, 2012, 08:39 AM

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Oh, good. My kids wouldn't have a clue, but you never know.

And my Bristol would be your neighbor, Jaina, plus a few years.

Missy t, alas, 10+ years may be what it takes, given my current schedule...
#6 - March 27, 2012, 08:43 AM

I think you're good with Bristol - it's a place name, anyway, not just a completely made up name, and I could see it getting used on actual children besides Ms. Palin, and being watered down even more. If it fits your naming scheme, I'd go ahead and use it.
#7 - March 27, 2012, 08:45 AM
Robin

Honestly, I didn't even know the Palin association. And for sure, my kid wouldn't.
#8 - March 27, 2012, 09:26 AM
SWAY, 2012 from Disney-Hyperion
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http://www.ambermcreeturner.com
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I would've never made that connection. And I don't think any of my students would either.
#9 - March 27, 2012, 09:28 AM
The GILDED series (Skyscape/ACP)
www.ChristinaFarley.com
Twitter @ChristinaFarley

Around here if you say Bristol, people think of race cars (Bristol Motor Speedway) - I think you def. won't have a Palin association.
#10 - March 27, 2012, 12:25 PM
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I think you're good with Bristol - it's a place name, anyway, not just a completely made up name, and I could see it getting used on actual children besides Ms. Palin...

Oh, let's hope not.
#11 - March 27, 2012, 12:49 PM

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Oh, let's hope not.

One reason I love writing fiction is that I get to saddle people with names I'd never give them in real life...
#12 - March 27, 2012, 01:20 PM

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I wouldn't get attached to the name until after the Republican convention. This is not a political statement. There's just an off chance that family could end up in the spotlight again.
#13 - March 27, 2012, 02:45 PM
Making metaphors out of molehills for over thirty years.

Another thought is that though you are writing for children, adults read it first and may have connotations for awhile longer. Thus why I'm thinking I may need to change my character, Newt (after Isaac Newton) for the short term. The other Newt wasn't on the political radar when I wrote the book. I may just use the full name vs. the nickname. You could do an alternate spelling.
#14 - March 27, 2012, 04:20 PM

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I don't know if this matters, but Bristol Palin will have a reality show, "Bristol Palin: Life's a Tripp" with Lifetime later this year. It was announced just last month. Most reality shows don't make it beyond the first season,... but if it should take off, then the name "Bristol" might become more associated with Bristol Palin to the teenage demographic. Plus, I imagine she'll find ways to get her name in the news in order to promote her reality show... like many other reality stars seem to.
#15 - March 27, 2012, 04:52 PM

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Ah...politics, not on the kid radar screen. Reality TV, on the other hand...

Methinks it's time to have a heart to hear with a world atlas to find a replacement. Glad I asked before getting too tied into the story.
#16 - March 27, 2012, 05:35 PM

I have a friend with kids named after European cities... Cardiff, Rennes, Tallinn...
#17 - March 27, 2012, 05:40 PM
Robin

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I know a Vienna, a Geneva, a Paris, and a Lunden (dunno why the spelling had to be changed...  ::) ).

Rue
#18 - March 27, 2012, 09:28 PM
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When I think of Bristol I think of the place, not Bristol Palin.

For some reason, I am now imagining kids named after Australian cities/towns with (presumably) aboriginal names - Toowoomba, Marcoola, Brymaroo... I have a friend who is pregnant, maybe I should suggest some of these to her  ;)
#19 - March 28, 2012, 06:49 AM

Hubby used to live near a road sign in Minnesota for Kenyon-Wanamingo. Always swore that'd be the best kid name ever.
#20 - March 28, 2012, 09:40 AM
critically-yours.blogspot.com

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