I’ve always used a different name on the internet than my real name. So much so, it surprises me when I receive an e-mail nowadays addressing me with my real name. Or when one of my real-life friends addresses me with my real name via chat. When I first joined chat-groups in the nineties, I also used ‘Liz.’ I remember how I joined an IRC-channel for the first time, and the group was like: ‘Hey, Liz, great to see you again. How’ve you been?’ From that moment on, I joined that channel under a different name.
As you may have guessed: yes, it’s from Elisabeth. Since there are 348,000 people with this name in The Netherlands, I think that’s safe to admit. Someone I admire from my family is named ‘Elisabeth.’
And why Black? Well, as a kid, I did many pretend-plays. One name I often chose for myself was ‘De Zwart,’ which roughly translates to “Black’ as last name. I have no explanation for this. I don’t know if I picked it up somewhere from a book or television show. But when I was looking for a writer’s name in 2006, I thought it sounded nice.
I added the X because, well, I could buy that domain. www.lizblack.com was already taken, and I thought the X would make a nice addition for an erotica writer.
And now, am I happy with it? Nah, not really. The name is kinda bland and less unique or memorable than I would have liked. But since it’s linked to my audiobooks, it’s tough to change it now. And people know and recognise me with it, so it’s getting more and more impossible to change. And I guess what I said in the beginning still counts: as long as your branding is on point, the name itself doesn’t really matter. So yes, I’m an erotica writer; pleasure to meet you; my name is Liz BlackX