Tuesday, May 21, 2013

Throwing off the Shackles of Pseudonimity

I've been pretty open about blogging under a (realistic sounding) pseudonym. Those days are over, though.

I'm the blogger (and Bloggernacle commenter) you've known for the past seven years as Keri Brooks, and my real name is Trudy Rushforth. I have an upcoming guest post at Feminist Mormon Housewives under my real name, and I've been participating in Facebook groups under my real name, so I figured it was time to just be myself. Do what is right, let the consequence follow, as the hymn says.

I'll still keep up my sporadic blogging here, but I'll be pseudonymous no more.

Below, I've reproduced the text of the (now deleted) page entitled "My Pseudonym", which explains why I kept up the pretense of a pen name for so long.

In the Bloggernacle (the LDS blogging community), I go by the name Keri Brooks. My first name isn't Keri, and my last name isn't Brooks. But it's what I've become known by, so I'm sticking with it. I started out just going by Keri, but I was getting confused with other commenters at Feminist Mormon Housewives (most notably Kerri, Carrie, and Kerry), so I threw my great-grandmother's maiden name in there as a surname. Now I get asked if I'm related to Joanna Brooks (aka Ask Mormon Girl). As far as I know, I'm not.

Reasons I go by a pseudonym:
  • When I first started participating in the Bloggernacle, I didn't think I would stay for long, so I didn't see the need to use my real name. That was 5 years ago, and I'm still here.
  • Although I am a faithful church member, I do discuss my struggles here (and in other places around the 'nacle) from time to time. I don't want something I said to be misinterpreted and cause me problems. Not so long ago, feminists got excommunicated for apostasy. I just don't want to go there.
  • Brand identity. Like I said, I've been a part of the 'nacle for 5 years. People know me as Keri Brooks, so if I suddenly start using my real name, people won't know who I am.
  • I'm pretty free and open about my experiences in law school, especially my experiences in being academically disqualified from one school and then getting into another school. I don't really want that to be what my future employers see if they google me.
  • In addition to wanting to keep my law school experiences to myself in a job search, I would prefer to keep my religious views to myself. I talk about things that are very sacred and personal here. I find it valuable to blog them and discuss them, and other commenters seem to find value in what I write as well. However, I've heard that there is some discrimination against the openly religious in academic hiring. I already will have a hard enough battle to get hired. I don't want to make it even harder on myself.
At bloggersnackers, I go by my real name and mention that I blog under the name Keri Brooks. I'm Facebook friends with some Bloggernacle participants, and they know the connection between my real name and my blog name. I've told some people I know in real life about my blog. I've put enough identifying information on my blog that someone who knows me and reads the blog could probably put two and two together and figure out that I'm the author.

Maybe I'll start blogging under my real name at some point, but for now, you can just call me Keri. I hope you enjoy my blog!

1 comment:

Ziff said...

Nice! Maybe your courage will prod some of us cowards to come out of the shadows too. :)