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Wednesday, August 24, 2005


Welcome to my new home on the web! In order to keep you coming back for more, I promise to update FREQUENTLY, and to make sure the site is full of juicy—if not downright saucy—bits. And I hope to hear from you, too. You know, if you have comments on my books, questions, or if you just like talking to people who have websites. Write to me, and I may even answer right here in this blog. I give terrible advice, but that may be just what you’re looking for! Maybe you like your advice like that.

Anyway, now that I have this site, I got to thinking about what it means to have a web presence. It is said that somewhere in the world, we all have a ghostly double. That person is your doppelganger. It only follows, then, that there should be a name for the phantom yous who share your name, and whose exploits can be found all over the internet.

Your Googlegangers.

Yes, your Googlegangers. If you have a last name like mine (we Johnsons are a dime a dozen), you’re going to have a lot of Googlegangers. But my first name isn’t all that common, unless you’re in Ireland. (In fact, I didn’t know any Maureens when I was little, and was convinced that my parents made the name up just to make my life difficult, instead of naming me Jennifer, which was the name of something like 50% of all girls born in the 70s. Half my family members couldn’t even pronounce it correctly, and absolutely no one could spell it. And don’t even get me started on the subject of those little named license plates for your bike, or the key chains, or the mugs. They never had Maureen. Believe me, I looked. I still look. And if I find a rainbowed and starred bike plate that says “This bike belongs to
MAUREEN” I am going to buy it, even though my bike was stolen several years ago, the very first week I lived in New York, from a locked pole in a locked room in a locked building—so I have nothing to attach it to. I will just wear it around my neck.)

Anyway, now that I’ve got a home on the web, it seemed like the only thing to do was Google myself and see what else I’ve been up to. Here’s what I found out.


First stop was to see who owned www.maureenjohnson.com. Turns out, I am a realtor in Massachusetts. This is weird, because I often feel like a realtor from Massachusetts. I step out the door in New York City, into the insufferable heat or three feet of snow (as the case may be), with the cabs whizzing by . . . and then suddenly a change sweeps over me, and I am craving clam chowder, and I desperately want to show you around some very suitable properties in your price range. Call me. We’ll talk.


Someday, I really ought to read this book, because for a really, really long time, people have been telling me, “Hey, do you know that your name is . . .”


This book seems to loom large on the Sci-fi horizon, and it is all about someone named Maureen Johnson. I am not happy to notice that it is remarkable for Maureen Johnson’s many “incestuous encounters.” Great.


For years, I have been bragging to all who would listen about the wonder that is my warm goat cheese salad. And now,
finally, my moment of triumph has come. It’s warm! It’s goaty!


What others call erratic behavior, I call art. And I sing: “We’re not going to paa—yyeee. We’re not going to paa-yeeee.”

Okay. I’ve never even seen Rent. I was offered tickets once, but couldn’t go. I can’t remember why. I should go, though, and see what that other Maureen Johnson is doing. It’s probably something sleezy, but probably not as sleezy as “many incestuous encounters.”


I seem to swing to extremes.

Not to get too much on the case of a fellow writer, but I became a little frustrated by this article because it took the author about 39 paragraphs of scenic description before he ever got anywhere near his subject, which was MY GOOGLEGANER, and the only thing I really cared about.

It looks like this Maureen Johnson is all about protecting crabs—and I am nothing if not for wildlife conservation. The fact that I run in mortal terror when I see crabs at the beach (as well as jellyfish, things I believe to be jellyfish but are often just waves or indentations in the sand, and seaweed in threatening-looking formations) is completely irrelevant.

There were other Maureen Johnsons, almost too many to count. I guess my hope is, though, that if you Google me, you’ll end up here. And maybe I can sell you a house. Or a crab. Or a salad. Or something.

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Anonymous Becky said...

I've desperately wanted to be the first commentor on one of your entries. Any of them. I was immensely surprised to see that no one had commented on this one. So here I am.

You should see Rent, though. The movie, at the very least. It's great. Full of loveable transvestites, drug addicts, hot songwriters, and scarf-wearing filmmakers. And much more. And though the plot rambles a fair bit, you'll come away from it feeling very happy and emotionally full.

At least, I came away from it feeling very happy and emotionally full. Then again, I'm rather emotional.

But watch it.

3:32 AM  
Anonymous caillie said...

if you think having Maureen for a name was hard i SO have you beat mine is Caillie (kay*lee). NO ONE has ever read it for the first time and EVER said it right! its funny though because the spelling of my name is irsh (we are not irsh, not even close).

i totaly agree with Becky i love the movie RENT!

2:06 AM  
Anonymous Brianna said...

This made me laugh so hard :D When becky first sent me the link to your blog, I thought you were the crab lady from cape cod! Now I know better...

Just kidding. I thought you were Maureen from RENT. Can't wait to read your books and more of your blog!

12:45 AM  
Anonymous Lindsey said...

john green is also a realtor!


that's pretty awesome.

10:28 PM  
Anonymous Mel said...

Oh, and I've also found this. It might be helpful.


12:30 AM  
Anonymous Mel said...

I'm not really sure why this didn't comment before, but...

I just wanted to say hi, I'm actually from your HS. I'm not sure why this isn't on the other blog post, I just figured...well, okay I didn't think. But ANYWAY. I wanted to say thanks for coming back, and not to worry-- we had just elected a new SC pres., so you were pretty much safe.

Oh, and you might enjoy this... I felt really guilty for only reading Devilish so I went out and bought the rest of your books. Suite Scarlett was amazing!


12:33 AM  
Anonymous Dimitra said...

well, Maureen, my name is Dimitra. I think that about pwns all on the list of people who have never owned a personalized souvenir.*sigh*

8:56 AM  
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Blogger Angieanything said...

Hi MJ!

I've been following you on Twitter for awhile and I've read your books, which are amazing. I decided to come to the beginning of your blog and read it all the way through.

You are one of the reasons why I decided to try my hand at writing a YA novel. I am 57,000 words into it and am very happy with it so far.

I hope that when I finish my book, that it is half as entertaining as your works are.

I don't know if you'll ever read this, but I wanted to thank you for being an inspiration to me.

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7:08 AM  

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