Thursday, March 28, 2024

Spelling Counts

 My names were 'new' names when I was born.  

I was actually named after an aunt -- Lavinia Winifred -- but my parents changed it to Wendie Louise. I've suffered ever since. Believe it or not my parents were influenced by the story of Peter Pan, but probably thought the 'IE' part of the name might make it closer to Winifred.  

All it did for me was to make sure that NOBODY could spell it. Wendy, Wendel, Wendi, Wende. I've had all of these show up. (It was especially fun for my 'friends' to call me Wendel the whole weekend we were at a conference together and THAT was how my nametag was printed out.)  

I've had people accuse me of faking/ lying about being a published writer. They claimed they had looked me up on Amazon dot com. They (not noticing the spelling of my online name) addressed their message to Wendy in their accusation. Which made me laugh. They couldn't even READ the name on the header of the message they sent to me?  

I answered with two words, "Spelling Counts!"

1 comment:

Karen Packard Rhodes said...

Oh, gads! Spelling does indeed count! My husband's middle name is Keys, the name he goes by in everyday dealings, and the name by which he is best known. He is absolutely adamant that it is spelled Keys, and I tell people it's spelled the same as "house keys, automobile keys, chastity belt keys." He hates it when people spell his name Keyes. My middle name was a problem for a long, long time. It is LeSueur, for the surname of a French antecedent of my grandaunt, who also was my mother's adoptive mother. When I was in elementary school, I moved into a new school and encountered some cruel kids who called me "sewer rat" because of the pronunciation they put on my middle name, more Anglicized than French. It was not fun, to say the least.

My husband and I share the distinction of having had our middle names misspelled on our birth certificates. The correction on my husband's birth certificate was simple: Someone, probably either my mother-in-law or my father-in-law, crossed out the misspelling and penciled in the correction. Mine went unnoticed or uncorrected until I was a teenager, with my mother and my aunt filing a formal affidavit with the state of California. Yes, indeed. Spelling counts.