Thursday, May 21, 2020

Marjorie Bowen Explains Her Pseudonym

In looking through my Marjorie Bowen files for a friend, I turned up a photocopy of a stray piece by Bowen--that I happened upon many years ago--which seems worth sharing. For the February 1926 issue of The Writer, a number of authors were asked to explain their use of one of their pseudonyms--a pseudonym by which they were better-known than by their regular names. The below is Marjorie Bowen's contribution.

It Entirely Depends on the Author—”Marjorie Bowen”

The pseudonym “Marjorie Bowen” was chosen for me, and not by me. I was just six­teen when my first published book was writ­ten, and to please the publisher, as well as to give a definite girlish atmosphere to the advertisement of the work, with my mother’s sanction the name “Marjorie Bowen” was used. The name Bowen is an old family name of my mother’s, her father being Moravian Bishop of Jamaica, and since the first settlement of the Moravian Church in England my ancestors have been connected with it. Per­sonally, I do not like pseudonyms, and would have much preferred to have “Margaret Campbell,” which was my name then, attached to the book. Later “Marjorie Bowen” did not seem to fit, as a goodly number of my works are serious historical novels, but I the fear the name will now always be attached to my work, as, of course, the publishers will have it as a selling asset.

As to the wisdom of using a pseudonym, it entirely depends on the author. If one’s name is pleasing to the ear and easy to say, by no my means use a pseudonym, especially if one’s own name is in keeping with the type of literature the author is giving to the public.

Mrs. Arthur Long

Monday, May 4, 2020

Collecting Robert Aickman, by R.B. Russell

Here's another in Ray Russell's video series about collecting, this time about Robert Aickman.