Saturday, January 16, 2016

A Writer by Any Other Name . . .?

. . . would be someone else. But who knew that there were so many other writers who share my name?

Have you ever made fun of someone's last name, and then later said 'yes' when he asked you to marry him? Don't you just hate it when that happens? 

Well, I had that exact thing happen to me! Yes, I confess to everyone reading this (all 2 of you) that I made fun of Derek's name when I first met him. About a year later, he asked me out on a date.  I said 'no' the first few times he asked. 

I remember talking it over with my room mate. She helped me list the pros and cons of dating this guy. (Hi Kim, if you are reading this! Kim reads my stuff. I'm not sure who the other person is who reads what I write. I know it isn't Derek.) Anyway, one of the items on the 'cons' list was his last name. What if I agreed to go out with him, and we hit it off, and what if he would ask me to marry him? Yes, I was that shallow. In my defense, though, I was going to university to get my bachelor of education, not any other bachelor. I was planning to be a teacher, and I didn't think I could be a teacher with the name Mrs. Gross. 

Well, short story made long, I did eventually say 'yes' to both going out with him, and later, to marrying him. And I was a teacher with the name 'Mrs. Gross.' The students were very gracious to me (or maybe terrified of me) and never made fun of my name, at least, not while I was in the room. One mother, when introducing me to her 10 year old son before the first day of school said something like, "This is your new teacher, Mrs.Gross. That's a funny name isn't it? But we are not going to make fun of it, are we?"

The random part of this think so far is that I have just written the back story of my topic for today's rant. I tend not to stick too closely to my topics. Keeps people on their toes, so to speak.

What I was intending to write about today is an explanation of why I am now using my full name, Karen Lucille Gross. It is because, now that I am a published author, with dozens of people Googling my name and all, I need to distinguish myself from all of the other famous women named "Karen Gross." I am surprised at how many there are. I would not want to take the credit for their accomplishments and I am sure that the feeling is mutual. 

There is a Karen Gross who is a cabaret singer from Philadelphia. Her hit single is called "Sex and the Single Singer." That's not me.

Then there is Karen Gross the educational consultant and former president of Southern Vermont College. That isn't me either.

Karen E. Gross is an attorney at law who specializes in  24-hour jail releases and legal emergencies. That is so not me!

One bio of a Karen Gross that I wouldn't mind getting confused with is an Associate Professor of English at Lewis & Clark with a specialty in Medieval England and Italy. Apparently she is currently  working on a project involving illustrated Apocalypse manuscripts. That sounds like a better educated and ambitious Karen Gross than I am. Her profile picture is very pretty. But alas, that one is not me either.

Other Karen Gross's that are not me include a Conference Interpreter at the European Parliament, a State Farm Insurance agent in California, and a Century 21 real estate agent in Kentucky.

Half way down Google's page 2 is the Triond profile of a writer named Karen Gross. That is me! I wrote and posted more than 600 articles at Triond, but the site is not well maintained, and most of the links don't work anymore.

There are a couple of my blog entries listed, but no links at all about my one published book, a novel called "Sacrificed to Vanity." Even an Amazon search would confuse the average person looking for me, as there are two other authors listed there named Karen Gross! One wrote a book called "Failure and Forgiveness" which sounds a bit like something I would write, until you see that the subtitle is "Rebalancing the Bankruptcy System" (Yale  Contemporary Law series). Yeah, no. I didn't write that. The other is a Karen M. Gross who writes horror and vampire books. 

So, as is my wont, I have given you an 800 word essay to answer the question that no one is asking. But for the 2 of you who read my blog entries, you can find me on Google and Amazon or wherever  you buy books online if you search for Karen Lucille Gross.

Who knew my name was so popular?