One of the awkward things about writing is that we become acutely aware of some of the words we use, especially the ones we use most often. “Said” can make us physically cringe, even though readers often glaze over it. In the same way, saying the same character’s name over and over and over again can sometimes start to feel cluttered and over-saturated, and so we can be tempted to mix it up a bit.
Maybe if the protagonist’s first name is worn out, you’re tempting to switch to his whole name, or his surname. Maybe a nickname, or an identifier like “the bespectacled man”.
While I’m busy with grad school, I’ll be replaying some of the most-read posts from my old blog.
Some people instantly gravitate to one particular narrative style. The story they’re writing just naturally lends itself to one Point of View (POV) in particular. After all, who would want to read “That guy over there? His name is Jake,” as the intro to one of the Animorphs books? The same goes with Terry Pratchett’s stories– they just don’t work if you were to squeeze the whole story into a single person’s head.
Other stories, though, get a bit fuzzier, and we writers can get iffy on what POV works best for what stories. Hopefully, though, I can clear up a bit of that fuzziness.