Or is it?
Are the names of your characters really that important or can you just pluck any name out of thin air and use it?
In a historical story I would say, yes of course names are important. You can't set a story 200 years ago and then use a name that has only come into being in the last 50 years.
In contemporary stories this fact becomes less important. With the world now a global community made smaller and smaller by 24 hour broadcasting and the internet we steal from each others' countries and cultures all the time. Using a name that doesn't originate where the story is set means nothing. In these stories, careful consideration to names might only be applied if you want to say something particular with the characters' names.
If it doesn't matter, then why am I currently 7000 words into a story and I'm still refering to my two lead characters as X and Z in the manuscript?
Want to help? Tell me what you think.
How do you pick the names of your characters?