When I first started to write I was so shy about it. I had this big plan to use a pseudonym. I was going to use my middle name and birth month. Renea Augustine. Fancy, right? I found my practice signatures in a box of old papers. Then I didn’t want anyone to know I write, and in an odd way I don’t care who knows now. Yet I rarely show work to those i work with or am close with.
But this is not what brought up pseudonyms for me. I found a story by William Shadden. He was such a cool dude. Surfer, poet, singing gondolier, and just a good guy. He had sun bleached long hair and a broad presence of nothing but masculinity. But it was always funny to me that when he wrote poetry he did so under Sebastian DeBovian (he is page 20). Unfortunately the young punks that wanted his bicycle didn’t think he was any of these things. He was just a victim and no match for their 45. It was heart breaking. I wonder now how many people read his poetry in the few anthologies and magazines and have no idea William Shadden is the same man as Sebastian DeBovian. The same man that was murdered in a city that had not seen a single murder in more than a decade.