The Fame Game: Who Has Your Name?

Group of Smiling Businesspeople 150x150 The Fame Game: Who Has Your Name?I have a confession to make. I like to Google my own name. Both of my names, actually. I have published fiction, creative non-fiction,and poetry under my maiden name, Holly Williams, and my married name, Holly Doering. Unfortunately when I type in my maiden name, all I come up with these days is pages (and pages and pages) on Holly Williams, the popular country singer and recording artist.

But it could be worse. At least Holly Williams isn’t a porn star. Or a drug kingpin. Or a fraudster. Although I used to get hassled at my university bookstore every time I wrote a check because a girl with my same name (except for the middle initial) bounced them.

According to NPR, several regular people whose namous are famous are having a hard time with it. The article says “the world is filled with Chris Browns, Elizabeth Taylors and Brad Pitts forced to field comments about their more famous namesakes. NPR asked people about this problem on our Facebook page and got well over 1,000 comments and emails.”

But not everybody is bugged by having the same name: Some people form clubs. According to American Profiles, the Bettys of Nebraska have 15 regional chapters and meet every April for some namesake fun. (Due to the old-fashioned name, many of the Betties are elderly.) More than 3,000 men named Bob belong to a “Bob Club” online. And the LINDA club has been meeting since 1987.

Do you have the same name as someone famous? What hassles or delights have you encountered?

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About Holly Doering

Holly Doering has worked for the Better Business Bureau Serving Eastern Washington, North Idaho, and Montana for half a decade. Her areas of expertise include the CORE Values Program (Character, Optimism, Respect, Ethics) for Teens and Charity Review as well as writing and editing. Prior to that, she has written for two newspapers, a local magazine, and taught English at the community college. She is the proud author of a short story in ZYZZYVA literary magazine and has had good luck publishing lots of poetry. Each year she rolls up her sleeves and wades into the autumn Nanowrimo writing madness and has several unfinished novels to her credit.