My name is James Hazlett Foreman. That’s the name I was given by my parents, though I suspect my mother had more to do with it than my father. I say this not because of a lack of fatherly interest in child-rearing but because of a great deal of interest in names on the part of my mother. She cares a lot about names, something I inherited.

I resemble the man I’m named for. I will share with you a photo of him, my grandfather James, though you might not see much of a resemblance:

my grandfather

I don’t think I look very much like him, though people who knew him say I do. I think if I do resemble him, it’s deeper than simple physical appearance. We have similar mannerisms, interests, ways of speaking. It’s funny that of all my siblings (and I have a few), I most closely resemble the very man I’m named after. Why is that? How did that happen? Pure, random chance. There can be no other explanation, unless you want to get spooky. I rarely want to get spooky, so I stick to the material realities. He was like that, too.

It’s All About SEO

Why I chose to blog under this name, James Hazlett Foreman, is because I finally settled that, at the age of 43, on a name to put my creative writing under. I was content to be James Foreman, but Google has made it very difficult. My profession is in SEO, or the business of ranking pages higher on Google search results.

The name I was happily using, James Foreman, was terrible for my personal brand.

When you search for James Foreman, Google doesn’t think you’re looking for me. It thinks you’re looking for James Forman, a famous civil rights leader. If not him, then you’re probably looking for his son, James Forman Jr., a famous lawyer. Even if you put my name in quotation marks, Google doesn’t think you’re really looking for me, and gives you the results for the James Formans anyway.

There’s Only One Me

I am the only James Hazlett Foreman, and I am using this website as a way of firmly establishing my own brand of me-ness. It will grow as I continue to blog, using this as another distraction from the business of writing, which is what I should be doing.

Note: I had a feeling I had written about my choice of names before, and I was right. I have an unreliable memory, but sometimes it works and coughs up something true.

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