Yesterday, I was editing a manuscript I wrote four years ago. I came across a name I had used for a minor character—Matthew Krawley. Something struck me as familiar about this name. Then I remembered that in the last year, my wife and I had watched all the Downton Abbey episodes on DVDs ordered from Netlix. I Googled Downton Abbey and up came the character Matthew Crawley. I had come up with almost the same name, years before I saw the series. Needless to say, I’ve now changed the name in my manuscript.
Have you ever used a name that was too similar to a well-known name or come a cross an example in something you’ve read?