What's the story/deal/etc. with your name?
Some people ask me this, and if you don't know me well, there is a reason they ask this.
So this will function as a sort of “FAQ” about it.
How do I pronounce it?
Many people get this wrong.
It is pronounced
What's the deal with the Eliza/Elizabeth vs Elly thing?
I have always preferred those close to me call me Elly. Those I don't know very well should always call me Eliza or Elizabeth. Professionally, I go by Elizabeth.
This may seem unusual, but think about how many people have nicknames like this. “I'm Thomas, call me Tom,” “I'm Cynthia, call me Cindy,” etc.
It's a shame English doesn't have T-V distinction anymore. That would be cool. My name is kinda like that, though, with “Elly” being the “T” form, and “Eliza”/“Elizabeth” being the “V” form.
Side note about Early Modern English
If this were Early Modern English, this would be a relevant style guide:
- T form: “Elly, I'm speaking to thee!”
- V form: “Elizabeth, I'm speaking to you!”
- T form: “Elly, what art thou doing‽”
- V form: “Eliza, what are you doing‽”
But I don't want to get too deeply into the weeds of Early Modern English conjugation and all that.
What forms of your name are acceptable?
As stated above, Elly is preferred if we're close or if I ask you to call me that; otherwise, Eliza or Elizabeth.
Please do not call me “Liz,” “Lizzie,” or any other variant.
If you require disambiguation with another Elizabeth/Eliza/Elly, ask me for a preferred form. I'm not unreasonable.
“Why are you so picky about capitalisation?,” or, “How do I capitalise your name?”
The style of my name is invariant: the first letter is capitalised, the rest is lowercase.
Acceptable variants: – Elly – Eliza – Elizabeth
Unacceptable variants: – elly – ELLY – ELIZA – eliza – eLiZa
If you're just shitposting though, I probably won't get my shorts in a wad about it. I'm not that stubborn.
What's the deal with your British English spelling?
This has nothing to do with my name, but I get asked that a lot anyway.
That's how I was raised to spell things.
How did you come about your name?
I picked it out of a hat. Literally. I just got a baseball cap, filled it with random slips of paper with names I liked, and chose it.
I chose it when I was about 18 years old or so, so a very long time ago.
What are your pronouns?
This section is tentatively normative, but subject to change.
This is tangential to my name, so I'll include it.
I've experimented with different pronouns (and even trying just my name) in the past, I'm not totally happy with the status quo, but this is the happiest I've been in a while, so we'll go with this for now.
You may call me she/her, or they/them. Either is fine. I have no real preference.
I used to be pickier about this, asking strangers to call me they/them and for those close to me to use she/her, but I've softened my stance since. I just found I didn't mind being called she/her.
What's your middle name?
I don't want to explain how I came about that name in a blog post, that's private.
It follows the same style guide as the rest of my name, first letter always capitalised, the rest lowercase. Please do not shorten it.
It used to be Jennifer, but that's long since deprecated.
What's your last name?
It's at the top of the blog, dummy!
This last name is descended from a Scottish planter who became a mayor of a town in what is now Northern Ireland. However, I do not really identify with this part of my heritage, it's just where my last name comes from. I may change it in the future.
What is your name in other languages?
In Japanese, I prefer the name 直美. This was given to me by my sensei who taught me elementary Japanese.
In French, Elisa and Elisabeth are acceptable variants. Elly is the same, though I usually spell it Ellie in French.
In Spanish and Portuguese, Elisabeth/Isabel/Isabella is acceptable. Elly is the same, though Isabel is fine for an informal version too.
Otherwise, ask me!
Side note on T-V distinction
In languages like French with T-V distinction, I ask that those who don't know me use the V form, and use the T form if we know each other or if that's the standard form in the language. They're usually the same rules that apply for Eliza/Elizabeth vs. Elly. All V forms should use “Eliza” or “Elizabeth” or a localised variant, and all T forms should use “Elly” or a localised variant of my choosing.