Saturday, February 11, 2006

This Poll is Closed

Votes are tallied and....

gratitudes go out to all who voted and pointed out the benefits of privacy, alphabetical order, sound and name recognition. You R O C K! I suppose if I ever achieve rock star status as a poet I could give props to my ancestors and until then I could at least not embarrass them, eh?

Thanks again! xoxo


Emily Lloyd said...

Truly, I would go with whatever feels most like you...though it does get sticky when you've built up a reputation around one name (Frischkorn). I think of how Heidi Lynn Staples often signs things, I think has on her blog, too "Heidi Lynn Staples [nee Peppermint]." And how cool did
"Laura (Riding) Jackson" look--I love that as a variant of the hyphen option (worked especially well given that her maiden name can also be read as a gerund)...

Also, because I'm a sucker for sound, I'd go with whatever sounds best to you...then there's also that fourth option: make up a last name for yourself, whether pen or not. Poet Carol Mirakove was Carol Kelly when I first met her--the last name was pure (and striking, I think) invention.

Story: one poet I knew in school elected to keep her maiden name rather than take her husband's SOLELY because hers began with "L" and his with "W"...and she thought "W" would put her too low on the poetry shelf at Borders. [grin]

michi said...


i would never have given up my maiden name, not only because people in the poetry community know me by that name (well, at least some do, i hope. *L*). i simply could not see myself as someone other than michaela gabriel.

i can see how you would have to make your new name known in the poetry community again if you changed it now. did i get you right - you are not actually suzanne frischkorn now but suzanne husband's-last-name? and this is purely about the writing? in that case, i'd probably stick to the name frischkorn, or use both names, frischkorn and your new married name. unless you don't feel comfortable with it - and that is something only you can decide. keep us posted!

will you tell us your maiden name then?


Ivy said...

Hi Suzanne,

Emily makes a few really good points. I do like a euphonious name and I think 'Suzanne Frischkorn' has that intruiging 'k' sting to it when one's says it.

Perhaps just think of it as your nom de plume and keep your secret identity for when you're not being a superpoet. ;-)

Radish King said...

This is of course, much too personal a question for any of us to answer. But. (Let's talk about your big but Simone.)

Name recognition is a good thing to have, I'm tempted to say vital, but your work does speak for itself. Heidi Peppermint still has Heidi going for her in spite of losing Peppermint, should she ever decide to lose it. It's an unusual name.

Here are my 3 points:

1. You are at the point in your career where your name is getting recognized. I think that's valuable. Yes your work speaks for itself but should someone see your book on a shelf or your poem online, me for instance, when I'm speed reading, I would probably pass up a lesser Suzanne, but would absolutely stop for a Frischkorn.

2. Ivy's right about the privacy issue. Absolutely right. How nice to be able to set aside poetry world and step back into your family life.

3. I finally learned to spell it.

4. Nope, it doesn't really matter.


michi said...

forgot to say that i like frischkorn too - because i know what it means! ha! i don't know about your other names, but this one certainly is unusual. that might be a bonus. instantly recognisable. :) m

Anne said...

I have to second what everyone else said, especially the part about it being your decision & going with what feels the most "right" to you. But I will say that I like the name Frischkorn. It's unusual, but not hard to pronounce and not that hard to spell, and it's memorable, and it goes well with your first name.

Good luck with the oncoming blizzard!

Peter said...

Suzanne (that was one of my sister's name) I need to know what the other name you are considering is! Did I miss it? Please do tell?

gina said...

I agree with Rebecca. I'm the reader who might miss you on the bookstore shelf or in poetry mags, even looking for you. My memory is terrible at that kind of detail. I'm a poor speller, bad with dates, and I work hard at names. Word verification is a challenge, and no I can't spell your last name without looking. I can't spell Rebecca's either.

That said, I'm jealous that you have a pen name. So jealous I could spit. That privacy is important. --You've got me wondering about your maiden name: you see how quickly privacy breaks down. And what writer didn't dream of having a pen name, at some point?

(I does not even matter.)


Simmons B. Buntin said...

Ditto, blah blah blah. But the name recognition works both from a reader's and an editor's perspective. Yes, as editors we try to be non-biased, etc., read without cnosideration of name or bio. But in the large mass of submissions we get, if there's someone we already know and like, we're more likely to read that submission first and, honestly, more carefully. Think Billy Collins in Poetry (he's like in every other issue now). That doesn't make us Foets, because editing is such a personal and qualitative practice anyway; but that's out there.

LitByFire said...

Tess Gallagher/ Teresa Bond
Maria Flook/ Mary Bruce
Annie Dillard/ Meta Ann Doke
Cynthia Huntington/ Cindy Dickson
Jorie Graham/ Marjorie Pepper

a lot of that going around, but the rest of us are a lot older than you... changed our names once in youth and then no more.
I have rethought Huntington, but NEVER would choose Dickson.

LitByFire said...

on the other hand:

Cleopatra Walton/ Cleopatra Long. Cleopatra Sweeney/ Cleopatra Mathis/ Cleopatra Phillips..
It really doesn't matter if you start with Cleopatra.