That's right, folks! You, my adoring, faithful readers, have spoken, and have said that I, PJ Green, will be infinitely more successful as a writer, if I simply accept Brandon Kisling as my working moniker! I believe that the final tally was some 80%+ agreed that I'd be best suited by taking that name.
Here's my problem, though (and, I apologize if I appear double-minded here folks; it's definitely not intended! You are merely fortunate enough to have access to these brief glimpses my mind-the amazing thing that it is-in action! And, yes Richard-I know: humility, right?). I am now, after giving this whole pseudonym issue much thought, not quite as conviced that I want to take on a pen name! It's not that I'm backtracking on my prior theory that unique names make for more successful people (although, stay tuned...a post is forthcoming regarding success; you folks who have decided to abstain, from this point forward, from bubble gum will appreciate it, I think). I do think that there is some correlation between unique names and success-the evidence is almost overwhelmingly supportive of that theory.
Here is my concern: I aspire to be a writer-you know that. But I have this desperate need, in virtually all that I do, to be good at it; no, not merely good-I want to be great at everything that I do. In fact, if I were to be totally honest with you, I'd have to tell you that I have this inexplicable (ok, it's not inexplicable; I think that I understand it-I'm just not going to tell you; there are some things that should remain private) drive to be the absolute best at everything that I put my hand to. So, the truth of the matter is, I don't simply want to be a writer, I want to be a successful writer, a good writer, one of the very best writers ever! And-for you, my faithful readers, who are self-described critics, I'm going to head you off at the pass; I recognize that I am, most certainly, not one of the best writers ever! This post is evidence of that! But, I don't think that means that I can't be one of the best! In fact, I'll tell you a secret: this is practice! And you know what they say about practice? It makes perfect! So, my coming here, whipping up these delectable mind dishes for you in preparation for the real deal, is merely developing my craft.
But I digress. If, in fact, I wish to be a truly great writer, I wish to be known and rewarded for being a truly great writer. Now, let me ask you; if I take on a pseudonym in order to attract potential readers, will that cheapen any success that I might ever achieve? I think so. A recently read a book (it's called "Heart-Shaped Box"; a fantastic book-for those of you who like Stephen King, and that strange "thriller-esque" genre that is his alone). It's by a guy named Joe Hill, a fantastic writer, in his own right. But, I found out recently when reading the news headlines on the internet, that Joe Hill is not really Joe Hill. His name is, in fact, Joseph Hillstrom King. Yes, my perceptive readers-he is, in fact, Stephen King's son. So, why then, did he choose not to put "Heart-Shaped Box, by Joseph Hillstrom King" on the cover of this, his first book? My guess is that he'd have probably sold ten times the number of copies that he originally sold, had it been widely known that he was the child of one of the most renowned storytellers in recent history. But, in his mind, success was not about how many books he sold; it was about his writing speaking for itself! This, my friends, is where I am! I want to be successful-not because I have a catchy name; no, I want to be known for being a great writer. In fact, when it's all said and done, I'll be content to overhear a conversation on the street, a conversation something like this:
"Oh my goodness! Have you read that blog?"
"Whose blog is that?"
"Umm...Oh what's his name? Argh! I can't remember his name! O jeez! Well, can't tell you his name-but his blog is fantastic! He wrote this thing-this absolutely brilliant piece-everyone's talking about it! It's a post about Bubble gum-"
"OHH!! YES! I read it! That's an INCREDIBLE blog! The guy's a great writer! Um...I can't remember his name either!"
You get my point! I want to be known-if I am to be known-not for my name, but for my work. So, I ask you, faithful fellow diners: given that, would it be a breach of principle to take a pseudonym-simply to give myself a leg up on the competition?
Tell me what you think! I read your comments, and I cherish them all! They mean alot to me! I encourage you to comment-now and often!
And-oh, yeah: those of you, my critics (read Richard-aka Y.U.R.), who, I'm sure, will use this as your "humility" soapbox for an evening or two-let me say this: I hesitate to write like this, because, I am, in all actuality, humble. I'm a blessed man, and I am worth nothing without the grace of God. So, please, don't take my desire to be great as the product of a huge ego. I simply want to do the best that I possibly can!