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Film Studies 101
Feature
The Secrets Behind Pop Culture's Most Mysterious Pseudonyms
J. K. Rowling, Stephen King and other covert authors

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The Secrets Behind Pop Culture's Most Mysterious Pseudonyms | Agatha Christie
Agatha Christie

Pseudonym: ‘Mary Westmacott’

The Queen of Crime™ needs no introduction. The author of 66 detective novels and 15 short story collections, she gave the world Hercule Poirot, Miss Marple and the world’s longest-running theatre production, The Mousetrap, which is still going in London after 60 years (still, we won’t tell you who did it, just in case). She also famously staged a mystery of her own in 1926, going missing for ten days for reasons that have never been definitively explained.

Away from all the crime and the puzzles, however, Christie was also Mary Westmacott for a handful of novels between 1930 and 1956, using the nom de plume to write romance. Oddly, it was never a secret that Westmacott's name was pseudonymous – Westmacott’s blurb on her first novel Giant’s Bread stated that she was really already a successful author – and it was only Christie’s identity that was kept quiet. She was revealed to be Westmacott in 1949. In her 1977 autobiography, she named Absent In The Spring (1944) as her favourite among all her own books.

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