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RE: [SCA Newcomers] Re: stuck at square one

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  • Oakes, George
    Jerry, and MistrisofDark, In the SCA, your persona, cannot/should not portray anyone real in the past. You cannot be queen elisabeth or henry the ?? king. You
    Message 1 of 30 , May 7, 2008
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      Jerry, and MistrisofDark,

      In the SCA, your persona, cannot/should not portray anyone real in the
      past. You cannot be queen elisabeth or henry the ?? king. You can and
      should portray a person "WHO COULD HAVE EXISTED" in the past.
      in other words you invent a character, persona and name that would have
      been found to have lived in the land area you wish to "Come From". No
      mithical or make-believe creatures/persons are allowed either.

      So Jerry, in picking a name, it should have been something that could
      very well have existed in that area and timeframe.

      I picked mid 1200's scotish gaelic persona, so my name is Gavin Kinkade,
      both names were in use at that time, and in the area, scotish lowlands,
      where my persona would be coming from.

      I am also going back and forth between this persona, and another one
      that I may also want to portray, an English Forester, in basicaly the
      same area, and time frame, just a different race, but that name I chose
      would not be a good english name. So I may wish to change the family
      name, becuase Gavin would still be an ok first name, but Kinkade would
      have been scotish. And even though one race marrying another could have
      an probably existed, it still not in the same vein the SCA is trying to
      stay with.

      Hope this helps..
      Gavin

      ________________________________

      From: scanewcomers@yahoogroups.com [mailto:scanewcomers@yahoogroups.com]
      On Behalf Of Jerry Hollifield
      Sent: Wednesday, May 07, 2008 9:47 AM
      To: scanewcomers@yahoogroups.com
      Subject: [SCA Newcomers] Re: stuck at square one



      --- In scanewcomers@yahoogroups.com
      <mailto:scanewcomers%40yahoogroups.com> , "mistrisofdark"
      <mistrisofdark@...> wrote:
      >
      > Hello group. Newcomer to scanewcomers. Im part of the shire of arenal
      > which is in meridias. I joined a little over a year ago and was re-
      > assured that there was no rush to jump and pick a persona and name.
      > Well its been a year now and I am still no closer to choosing a name
      > etc. I am sure this is something everyone struggled with and I was
      > hoping someone could give me a tip or two.
      > I want nothing grandious. My fiance and his family who persuaded me to

      > join are potraying Normans. Nothing wrong with that but I chafe at
      that
      > choice.
      > I suppose so much rests on the individual and what they wish to be
      seen
      > as. One Lady suggested I do early North American trapper. Not a
      > colonist she said french?? I think, but when i started researching
      > starting with 1498 and John Calbot I found it seems they started
      > pushing the Native American Indians away and fighting them. I was
      > hoping to find otherwise as I had in my head an Indian friendly
      > trapper. Long story, again based on my actual personality and
      heritage.
      > I know im fretting and getting to ocd over this but thats me.
      > Also has anyone had bad results from choosing a persona so late in the

      > sca timeframe?
      > Something tells me just choose english peasant and be done with it but

      > i can't.
      > I prefer wearing tunics and breeches with mocs or boots and am trying
      > to get into heavy fighting time allowing. Being female I dont really
      > want to get into all the dresses and costume that I see most women
      > choose. Perhaps for court but not at smaller events.
      > Crown list is coming up next month for us and I so wish to atleast
      have
      > a name chosen instead of that awkward pause when I introduce myself at

      > events. But name hinges on period and place eh? Aye what a conundrum.
      > Help please and thank you.
      >
      Hi. like you i am new..i have been a falconer most of my life and so
      i wanted something in my name that i loved so i went with Raptor de
      Hawk...i don't think there is a rule you have to pick an individual
      from the past.Think of something you care about..that may work...good
      luck...Jerry






      [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
    • Nicole E. Miller
      Infact there is a rule that you cannot pick the name of someone in the past (if you want to register it). If you have no planns of registering a name (but
      Message 2 of 30 , May 7, 2008
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        Infact there is a rule that you cannot pick the name of someone in the past (if you want to register it). If you have no planns of registering a name (but understand that you can't register any device or badge without a registered name) you can call yourself what ever you like. I don't reccomend calling yourself Julius Ceasar, or something else that belonged to a very famous person, but if you really want to be know as "Tim the Toolman" go ahead.

        Sometimes it is easiest to start with just a first name you like. There is no requirement that everybody has a first, middle and last name and has a specific place of origin and has it registered with the College of Heralds just to play. I know people who have been playing for more than 15 years without a full SCA name.

        Hope this helps take some pressure off.

        Sian verch Gwilim



        ---- Jerry Hollifield <meerkat22@...> wrote:

        Hi. like you i am new..i have been a falconer most of my life and so
        i wanted something in my name that i loved so i went with Raptor de
        Hawk...i don't think there is a rule you have to pick an individual
        from the past.Think of something you care about..that may work...good
        luck...Jerry
      • Coblaith Mhuimhneach
        ... There are no rules about what you can *call* yourself. (Though if you choose something obscene or profoundly offensive you should expect people to react
        Message 3 of 30 , May 7, 2008
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          Jerry wrote:
          > i have been a falconer most of my life and so i wanted something in my
          > name that i loved so i went with Raptor de Hawk...i don't think there
          > is a rule you have to pick an individual from the past.Think of
          > something you care about..that may work...

          There are no rules about what you can *call* yourself. (Though if you
          choose something obscene or profoundly offensive you should expect
          people to react accordingly.) But there are definite rules about what
          you can register with the College of Arms.

          Registration has several benefits:

          --It reserves your name for you alone. No two S.C.A. names can be the
          same. (And "the same" is more complicated than you might think.
          "Elizabeth Shaw" and "Bess Shaw" are considered the same, because
          "Bess" is short for "Elizabeth", for example.) Of course, that also
          means that if somebody else registers the name you love before you get
          around to it, you're no longer entitled to use it. They have become
          the official "real" whomever.

          --It makes it possible for you to register armory (i.e., a heraldic
          device and/or up to three badges for yourself or a household or other
          group). No two registered pieces of armory can be too similar, either
          (and what constitutes "too similar" is w-a-y more complicated than you
          probably think), so if you don't register your device you can never be
          sure somebody else won't register it and become its rightful owner.
          And, yes, you might be called into court and ordered to stop carrying a
          shield, wearing a surcoat, or using other items that have somebody
          else's device on them, even if you've been doing so since before it was
          registered. Somebody else's property is somebody else's property.

          --In some kingdoms, you have to have a registered name and registered
          armory to get an official award scroll. If someone who doesn't have
          those elements is awarded arms, or in some cases given other honors,
          they have to make due with a promissory note.

          --The registration process puts your proposed name up for review before
          the best onomasticians and book heralds active in the S.C.A. They will
          let you know if you've got something that sounds real, something nobody
          in the Middle Ages or Renaissance would recognize as a name, or
          something that could sound real with a few changes. They'll help you
          avoid potentially embarrassing mistakes like calling yourself "son of"
          when your persona is female or using the word for "muck" as your first
          name *before* everybody you know has memorized it. They'll also make
          it possible for you to have a really, really, realistic medieval or
          Renaissance name without being an onomastician or herald yourself, so
          no matter how interested in history you later get you'll always have an
          S.C.A. name of which you can be proud and that you'll remain
          comfortable using.


          I strongly recommend all newcomers read "Choosing a Society Name: Hints
          for Newcomers" <http://www.s-gabriel.org/names/dietmar/hints.html>
          before they pick something to call themselves in the Society. I also
          strongly recommend they follow its recommendations when they do pick.
          There are NO advantages to choosing a "starter S.C.A. name" that can't
          be registered and doesn't resemble a real medieval or Renaissance name.
          All you'd be doing is restricting your options later.

          If you just want to choose something quickly and get on with it, go to
          the Medieval Names Archive, pick a culture, pick an article with a list
          of names from that culture, and pick a first and second name off the
          list. (If there's a "how to" article for the culture, you should
          probably read that first. There's a reason those exist for the
          cultures that have them.) It's so easy a three-year-old could do it.
          (I know, because mine did. Yes, he could read. . .maybe an average
          six-year-old.) You'll have a name that's at least close to correct for
          that time and place, and if you choose to change it later, it's no
          harder to give up a good name than one you picked out of a fantasy
          novel or made up out of whole cloth. On the other hand, if once you've
          settled into a name and used it for a year or two you discover that you
          *don't* want to hassle with switching to a different name, you won't
          have to choose between doing so and registering that spiffy device
          you're itching to paint on your shield.

          There are people who make "don't lock yourself into anything" a mantra
          for newcomers. Well, let me add another. Don't close any doors in
          your own face.


          Coblaith Mhuimhneach
          Barony of Bryn Gwlad
          Kingdom of Ansteorra
          <mailto:Coblaith@...>
        • Tim
          First off, welcome to the SCA and to the list. It seems that choosing a persona and device are the two biggest questions and worries that most have on this
          Message 4 of 30 , May 8, 2008
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            First off, welcome to the SCA and to the list. It seems that
            choosing a persona and device are the two biggest questions and
            worries that most have on this list. I have seen people come back
            with the rules of what you can and can not be called in the SCA, so
            I'm not going to beat the dead horse on this.

            North American personas are very rare and very hard to either
            document if you wish to register the name. I know of only one Native
            American persona and two "explorers". Depending on if you want to
            register a name and/or device, I suggest sticking to a European
            region. Your persona or "life story" can place you anywhere in the
            world. My persona is 16th c Swiss German as a member of the Vatican
            Guard. Now when I started 20+ years ago, I was in a Shire that was
            overrun with Scotts and Irish persona and I really didn't want to be
            a Lemming. My selection of where and when I came from was unique. I
            took three darts, a world map, and 10 feet away I let them fly. One
            was in the Pacific Ocean, one in Antarctica, and one was what looked
            like Germany but was in Switzerland. Late 1500's only came when I
            started looking a Swiss history books. Otto came from a Baron in a
            local barony, sounded like a good name at the time. von Schwyz is
            the canton that Otto comes from.

            Until you find your persona, I have seen dozens use John/Jane
            of "your local canton/shire". There is nothing wrong with this and
            it tells people where you're from, a good ice breaker. You asked if
            I encountered any problems with late period personas, nope none at
            all. You are looking into heavy fighting; by all means go for it.
            There are some very good female fighters in the SCA and I would like
            to see more.

            As for garb, nothing wrong with not wanting to wear a dress. One
            reason that I didn't pick a Scottish persona when I first started. I
            know a "lady" that is a navel Captain, privateer in nature. Very
            late period and historically documentable and accurate. Most of
            these women sailors were either under disguise as young men to a few
            that were very well known as a woman. But off the top of my head, I
            think those Captains are out of period.

            Remember, you are here to have fun. Personas develop and grow as you
            play the game. Once you start looking into things that you like,
            you'll find something that will stick and grow. Get to know your
            herald; a good herald knows what you can and can't do for names.

            Have fun,
            Otto von Schwyz



            --- In scanewcomers@yahoogroups.com, "mistrisofdark"
            <mistrisofdark@...wrote:

            Hello group. Newcomer to scanewcomers. I'm part of the shire of
            arenal which is in meridias. I joined a little over a year ago and
            was re-assured that there was no rush to jump and pick a persona and
            name. Well it's been a year now and I am still no closer to choosing
            a name etc. I am sure this is something everyone struggled with and I
            was hoping someone could give me a tip or two. I want nothing
            grandiose. My fiancé and his family who persuaded me to join are
            portraying Normans. Nothing wrong with that but I chafe at that
            choice.

            I suppose so much rests on the individual and what they wish to be
            seen as. One Lady suggested I do early North American trapper. Not a
            colonist she said French?? I think, but when I started researching
            starting with 1498 and John Calbot I found it seems they started
            pushing the Native American Indians away and fighting them. I was
            hoping to find otherwise as I had in my head an Indian friendly
            trapper. Long story, again based on my actual personality and
            heritage. I know I'm fretting and getting to ocd over this but that's
            me. Also has anyone had bad results from choosing a persona so late
            in the SCA timeframe?

            Something tells me just choose English peasant and be done with it
            but I can't. I prefer wearing tunics and breeches with mocs or boots
            and am trying to get into heavy fighting time allowing. Being female
            I don't really want to get into all the dresses and costume that I
            see most women choose. Perhaps for court but not at smaller events.

            Crown list is coming up next month for us and me so wish to at least
            have a name chosen instead of that awkward pause when I introduce
            myself at events. But name hinges on period and place eh? Aye what a
            conundrum.

            Help please and thank you.
          • David Roland
            ... heraldic ... other ... You can of course go ahead and register your amory (device or badges) under a holding name as well, so you don t HAVE to register
            Message 5 of 30 , May 8, 2008
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              > Registration has several benefits:


              > --It makes it possible for you to register armory (i.e., a
              heraldic
              > device and/or up to three badges for yourself or a household or
              other
              > group).

              You can of course go ahead and register your amory (device or
              badges) under a "holding name" as well, so you don't HAVE to
              register a name to register a device. That said it can complicate
              things for later should you choose to register a name after you
              register a device.


              >
              > --In some kingdoms, you have to have a registered name and
              registered
              > armory to get an official award scroll.

              Find out if you are in one of these kingdoms. If you aren't don't
              worry about it unless you plan to move to another kingdom and expect
              to immediately get an award there. Otherwise worry about it after
              you get there.

              > I strongly recommend all newcomers read "Choosing a Society Name:
              Hints
              > for Newcomers" <http://www.s-gabriel.org/names/dietmar/hints.html>
              > before they pick something to call themselves in the Society. I
              also
              > strongly recommend they follow its recommendations when they do
              pick.

              Contrary to what some may believe, I'm all for registering your
              name, just not in your first year of the SCA. Take the time to find
              out what you want and the above is one great way to research that
              and try stuff out.

              > If you just want to choose something quickly and get on with it,
              go to
              > the Medieval Names Archive, pick a culture, pick an article with a
              list
              > of names from that culture, and pick a first and second name off
              the
              > list. (If there's a "how to" article for the culture, you should
              > probably read that first. There's a reason those exist for the
              > cultures that have them.) It's so easy a three-year-old could do
              it.
              > (I know, because mine did. Yes, he could read. . .maybe an
              average
              > six-year-old.) You'll have a name that's at least close to
              correct for
              > that time and place, and if you choose to change it later, it's no
              > harder to give up a good name than one you picked out of a fantasy
              > novel or made up out of whole cloth. On the other hand, if once
              you've
              > settled into a name and used it for a year or two you discover
              that you
              > *don't* want to hassle with switching to a different name, you
              won't
              > have to choose between doing so and registering that spiffy device
              > you're itching to paint on your shield.

              Just don't register you name in the first year of your SCA life
              because "the Society never forgets" and people will continue to call
              you by that name for a very long time. Try things out first to see
              if you like it, THEN register it if you do.

              The Don't Speech:

              http://ianthegreen01.googlepages.com/newcomeradviceonthesca

              >
              > There are people who make "don't lock yourself into anything" a
              mantra
              > for newcomers. Well, let me add another. Don't close any doors
              in
              > your own face.

              And the whole registering/not registering your name can do both at
              the same time. If you register you name you close all sorts of
              doors, which can be a very good thing, or a bad thing, so wait a
              while, try it on and RESEARCH names for something you might like.
              As a newcomer picking a name in the SCA can be pretty daunting.
              Frankly, I tell all my newcomers, research, try things out and wait
              a year to give yourself time to figure out if you like it. THEN
              register it to your hearts content.

              Just remember, like anything else in the SCA you are going to
              receive all sorts of conflicting advice. I often tell people if you
              ask five people in a group advice on one thing you will get seven
              different opinions. Do what works for you, but don't let anyone
              tell you that you HAVE to do anything. You are free to choose any
              time period pre-17th century from any culture in the world (see
              Corpora before arguing please). Have fun, enjoy and move forward at
              YOUR pace, not anyone elses.

              Ian
            • Sara L Uckelman
              ... This is not quite correct. The term holding name is a special label used only by the Laurel Sovereign of Arms. A person can be given a holding name if
              Message 6 of 30 , May 8, 2008
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                Quoth "David Roland":
                > > --It makes it possible for you to register armory (i.e., a
                > heraldic
                > > device and/or up to three badges for yourself or a household or
                > other
                > > group).
                >
                > You can of course go ahead and register your amory (device or
                > badges) under a "holding name" as well, so you don't HAVE to
                > register a name to register a device.

                This is not quite correct. The term "holding name" is a special
                label used only by the Laurel Sovereign of Arms. A person can
                be given a holding name if the name they have submitted is not
                registerable but the armory they have submitted is. Since all
                registered armory must be associated with a name, the holding
                name prevents registerable armory from being returned just because
                the name was also returned. Only Laurel can create holding names,
                but changing a holding name is easy because it never costs any
                fees. (You just have to send the relevant paperwork to your
                kingdom submissions herald.)

                So, you do have to have a registered name in order to register a
                device. If Laurel creates a holding name, that *is* your registered
                name, until such time as you choose to change it.

                > That said it can complicate
                > things for later should you choose to register a name after you
                > register a device.

                As noted above, it is not possible to register a device without
                having submitted a name. Changing your name once it has been
                registered is straightforward; it handled exactly the same was as
                registering the name in the first place, you just check the "change"
                box on the submissions forms.

                -Aryanhwy



                --
                vita sine literis mors est
                http://www.ellipsis.cx/~liana/
              • Coblaith Mhuimhneach
                ... Someone should probably mention, too, that in some kingdoms your official, registered name will go on any awards you receive regardless of whether you ve
                Message 7 of 30 , May 8, 2008
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                  Ian wrote:
                  > You can of course go ahead and register your amory (device or badges)
                  > under a "holding name" as well, so you don't HAVE to register a name
                  > to register a device.

                  Aryanhwy answered:
                  > If Laurel creates a holding name, that *is* your registered name,
                  > until such time as you choose to change it.

                  Someone should probably mention, too, that in some kingdoms your
                  official, registered name will go on any awards you receive regardless
                  of whether you've ever used it for anything else. (It may even be a
                  Society policy that some branches in some kingdoms are just more
                  conscientious about following; I'm not sure.) Since it's just a
                  place-holder, Laurel doesn't sweat too much about what to use for a
                  holding name. You could end up with the S.C.A. equivalent of "Jane
                  Doe" on your scroll(s).


                  Coblaith Mhuimhneach
                  Barony of Bryn Gwlad
                  Kingdom of Ansteorra
                  <mailto:Coblaith@...>
                • Coblaith Mhuimhneach
                  ... You know, I hear that noised about a lot. But my observation has been that (1) most people are willing to make an effort to switch over to a new name if
                  Message 8 of 30 , May 8, 2008
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                    Ian wrote:
                    > Just don't register you name in the first year of your SCA life
                    > because "the Society never forgets" and people will continue to call
                    > you by that name for a very long time.

                    You know, I hear that noised about a lot. But my observation has been
                    that (1) most people are willing to make an effort to switch over to a
                    new name if they know you want them to and that (2) the better-known
                    someone is by Name A, the longer it takes for them to switch to Name B.
                    Someone brand-new to the S.C.A. who hasn't even had time to research a
                    name yet can probably change her name in about a week. It took our
                    Minister of A&S, who'd been using the same name for over 15 years and
                    is one of the best-known artisans in our area, about six months to get
                    everybody to start calling her by the new one. It took our Hospitaler,
                    who'd been around for a couple of years and a very visible part of our
                    barony, maybe two. I don't know how long it took the inimitable
                    Tangwystyl
                    <http://www.heatherrosejones.com/simplearticles/taleoftangwystyl.html>,
                    but I've never heard anyone call her anything else, or seen her older
                    name anywhere other than in her article on the subject.

                    In any event, it's what people CALL you that lingers, not what you
                    register. Changing what you've registered always and only takes
                    exactly as long as the paperwork does. So even if the "it's so hard to
                    change it" argument were valid, it would be an argument against
                    choosing a name at all, not registering one. And since it takes just
                    as long to get it into everybody's head that the name they've been
                    using is your real-life name and now you want them to call you
                    something else as it does to get it into their heads that the name
                    they've been using was your "'til I decide" name and now you want them
                    to call you something else, you don't gain anything by not choosing a
                    good medieval name to use. (They're not going to call you "Hey, you!"
                    indefinitely.)

                    I wrote:
                    > There are people who make "don't lock yourself into anything" a mantra
                    > for newcomers. Well, let me add another. Don't close any doors in
                    > your own face.

                    Ian answered:
                    > And the whole registering/not registering your name can do both at the
                    > same time. If you register you name you close all sorts of doors,
                    > which can be a very good thing, or a bad thing, so wait a while, try
                    > it on and RESEARCH names for something you might like.

                    I don't recommend you register a name you're not sure you want to keep,
                    either, but only because it takes about a year for the paperwork to
                    process and if you decide you want a different one half way through
                    you've wasted everybody's time and effort. Registering a name doesn't
                    make anything happen that you can't make un-happen just by releasing
                    it. It doesn't lock you into anything.


                    Coblaith Mhuimhneach
                    Barony of Bryn Gwlad
                    Kingdom of Ansteorra
                    <mailto:Coblaith@...>
                  • Briana Delaney
                    This don t lock yourself in mentality drives me NUTS! I have been researching my name since BEFORE I was in the SCA. I had not done serious research
                    Message 9 of 30 , May 8, 2008
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                      This "don't lock yourself in" mentality drives me NUTS! I have been
                      researching my name since BEFORE I was in the SCA. I had not done serious
                      research then, but asked questions to people who might know, and now have
                      dug much deeper. I still need to register my name, but, I have all the
                      research done now, and got only a small amount of help with it (I needed the
                      Drachenwald herald for a bit!) I actually probably could have used what I
                      had but I wanted to see primary documentation...I'm picky sometimes!

                      Now, I have been in the SCA for ... 5 months. I think it's time.

                      Begging to differ,

                      (not telling my name; you can't have it)


                      [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
                    • Kristine Elliott
                      On Thu, May 8, 2008 at 4:40 PM, Coblaith Mhuimhneach ... I ve changed my name 2 times (well, actually just a bit more.) Roughly, I went from Triste (completely
                      Message 10 of 30 , May 8, 2008
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                        On Thu, May 8, 2008 at 4:40 PM, Coblaith Mhuimhneach
                        <Coblaith@...> wrote:
                        > Ian wrote:
                        >> Just don't register you name in the first year of your SCA life
                        >> because "the Society never forgets" and people will continue to call
                        >> you by that name for a very long time.
                        >
                        > You know, I hear that noised about a lot. But my observation has been
                        > that (1) most people are willing to make an effort to switch over to a
                        > new name if they know you want them to and that (2) the better-known
                        > someone is by Name A, the longer it takes for them to switch to Name B.

                        I've changed my name 2 times (well, actually just a bit more.)
                        Roughly, I went from Triste (completely undocumentable) to Cateline to
                        Scolastica. The first big change was from something unregisterable to
                        something registerable. The second change was from something I knew I
                        was mispronouncing and had grown to dislike to something documentable
                        to my time and place AND that I had loved when I ran across it 25
                        years before. (Then it didn't fit my persona.)

                        I find the important thing with a name change is to announce it
                        publicly, explain why and ask people to help by using your new name.
                        Those that respect your wishes will. Those that refuse to even try –
                        are they really worth retaining as friends? That's my attitude. I
                        figure that calling someone by the name they want to be called is a
                        real basic level of respect that is reasonable to give to any human
                        being.

                        Scolastica
                        --
                        http://www.geocities.com/souriete/

                        If you can't get rid of them ugly old skeletons in the closet, at least teach
                        'em how to dance funny. Billy C. Wirtz
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