I want to be a writer. Not a novelist or a screenwriter or heaven for bid a journalist, no I just want to be a writer, with a by line that includes my name spelled correctly.
Published, read and well thought of by many, criticized by some, but respected by all would be nice. I don't want to be on the "A" list for the Christmas party, the must have guest for a gallery grand opening, or the only non-family member requested to speak at a funeral.
I don’t want fame, fortune or celebrity status, not because I don’t have an ego, (I do) but because I don’t want the reputation of a angry Gore Vidal, smugness of William F. Buckley Jr., or the strangeness of Truman Capote.
I’d like just a touch of that a small measure of respect that well known writers receive, correct spelling of my last name.
David Sedaris comes to mind.
David Sedaris photo from the jacket of his most recent book.
Many people, well at least readers of the New Yorker, Esquire, and Playboy, know the name which is always spelled correctly and listeners of National Public Radio who always hear David's name pronounced correctly, often by David himself. However, most people wouldn’t recognize him on the street or in a restaurant.
Anonymity is good for a writer.
But a recognizable name doesn't insure correct spelling it takes something more.
I enjoy my last name, McIntire. There are a lot of McIntire’s in this world, not too many, just enough to keep it interesting, Jamie McIntyre the news anchor and Reba McEntire both spell their names differently, but like mine it is always pronounced the same way. Yet many people try to make it much more difficult than it is, most often with a contorted look upon their face. "Mick In Tuuuur", "Mick In Tree" and "Ma Kin Treee" are clues that it's a telemarketing call on the other end of the phone.
I also battle the world daily over the spelling of my last name, it’s "Mc" and not "Mac", "In" and not "En" and “tire” versus “tyre”.
And so I blog away in cyberspace, where my real name and it's correct spelling is as unimportant as the subject since most blogers don't use their real name anyway.
Those who read my blog are sometime kind enough to offer up thanks and encouragement in the way of comments; “nice story”, “keep up the good work” and the always heartfelt “I just won a gift card! Click here to get yours!” comment.
In the blogging world, one way to be noticed and to get your name spelled correctly is to be outspoken.
Perhaps I should take up a cause, but what cause? Animal Rights? The Nudist Movement? Skin Heads? Maybe Illegal Immigrants?
Of course I could be a leading edge of Hollywood gossip? Write the first story that breaks the news that Miley Cyrus is expecting a child or write the story with all the lurid details of Brad Pitt and his hookup with Madonna while Angelina was in labor.
I could join the battle for the red and blue states and write outlandish essays about John McCain or Barrack Obama. It doesn’t seem to take much in the way of factual news or intelligence to become a political pundit these days.
On the other hand, I think I’ll just continue to write about things that cross my path, and maybe one day I’ll be afforded status like David Sedaris.
Why do I want to be David Sedaris? Because while not overwhelmingly famous he is important enough that google and even Microsoft Word will automatically suggest the correct spelling of his last name should you ever misspell it.
Now that’s something to write about!