From International Viewpoints (IVy) Issue 6 - May 1992
Editorial note: I have had a couple of complaints about authors using
pseudonyms. Now: John Dorne has come as a pseudonym. When I asked for
permission to use his real name, I got the following response, which I
think may interest readers. From now on I am willing to use
As for Pseudonyms
By John Dorne, Denmark
Well, we can talk about it.
Firstly I think there is a big difference between being anonymous in a
political, power game or undercover situation, and using a pseudonym
when you write for entertainment or perform on the stage.
Secondly pseudonyms may have different functions that have nothing to
do with being in hiding.
A stage name is chosen to be acceptable and easy to duplicate, not to
hide an identity. Authors use it too. Like Marilyn Monroe, Mark Twain,
Which last shows how a pseudonym can be used to communicate or be
compatible with a certain type of writing. S›ren Kierkegaard used this
a lot, writing for different magazines about different kinds of
subjects under different names, each being tied up with a particular
frame of mind.
Pseudonyms are also used by well-known persons who want to write
something which they consider not serious enough for their station in
life or otherwise incompatible with some image they want to maintain.
It has been theorized that the name (and person) of William
Shakespeare has been used to hide the true identity of the author, an
English Nobleman, or Queen.
As for myself, I want to promote myself as a business man, primarily,
so I don't promote myself as an author.
Some ideas presented in the stories might be considered incompatible
with the mind of a good business man and of course would be, since I
do not necessarily write from my own viewpoint.
Secondly, I would like some spontaneous reactions to my stories by
people who do not know me, or rather: don't know they know me.
In spite of all these considerations, I am not completely unwilling to
consider the matter again, if you think you have valid arguments.