Authors real names and their famous pen names

Writers choose to change their name or write under a pseudonym for a variety of reasons…

Certain authors have used pen names, or ‘nom de plume’, for some or all of their work.  The reason could be to experiment with a new genre without upsetting their regular readers or in the case of several female authors, to be taken more seriously. It could also be used to protect the identity of the author for a political or religiously sensitive work.


Here are some authors who have written under a different name:

Author’s Pen name or PseudonymAuthor’s real name
Richard BachmanStephen King
L. Frank BaumEdith Van Dyne
Nicholas BlakeCecil Day Lewis
Anne BrontëActon Bell
Charlotte BrontëCurrer Bell
Emily BrontëEllis Bell
Anthony BurgessJohn [‘Jack’] Burgess Wilson
John le CarreDavid John Moore Cornwell
Lewis CarrollCharles Lutwidge Dodgson
George EliotMary Ann Evans
HergéGeorges Remi
MolièreJean Baptiste Poquelin
George OrwellEric Arthur Blair
Ellery QueenFrederic Dannay (with co‐author/cousin)
Manfred B. Lee
J.D. RobbNora Roberts
A. N. RoquelaureAnne Rice
SakiHector Hugh Munro
George SandAmandine Dupin
Dr. SeussTheodor Geisel
Lemony SnicketDaniel Handler
StendhalMarie Henri Beyle
Mark TwainSamuel Langhorn Clemens
Barbara Vine Ruth Rendell
VoltaireFrançois‐Marie Arouet
Mary WestmacottDame Agatha Christie

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