Recently I started reading a book (one which I didn’t publish) in which the author mentioned me (he doesn’t know me) and spelled my name wrong. He called me “Stan Sinclair of Tennessee.” I knew without a doubt that was writing of me, because he was talking about a project which I had co-founded. Now calling me Sinclair doesn’t offend me, because it is just another spelling for the St. Clair name. The only fact that bothered me a bit is that it was incorrect, and did not properly identify me by the name by which I have been known all of my life. Someone “Googling” me under the Sinclair spelling would be hard pressed to locate me.
Then a few days later I was given incorrect information on a lady’s name whom I needed to contact and inadvertently sent out an email with the incorrect spelling of that dear lady’s name. I felt really bad about that.
If you are addressing or making reference to another person, it is always best to be doubly certain that you have their name correct. Once you say it to the person or even worse, put it in print, there’s no calling it back.
In the meantime, get a copy of Most Comprehensive Origins of Cliches, Proverbs and Figurative Expressions. It’s still selling well because I tried very hard to get the facts right before publishing it. I am, however, human, and if you own a copy and find an error, please don’t hesitate to contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org.