A Pseudonym is a Tool. Not an Escape.
L. Walker

L, you’ve nailed it for me — obviously I write under a pseudonym, and it’s for the reasons you describe: protecting the privacy of people in my life, whose interactions will necessarily creep into my writing; protecting people in my life who may not know about difficult events I’ve written about that may affect them; and being free to use my voice without judgment as “mine” but with the (constructive) criticism of an audience to help me improve it. Great post!

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