Goodreads Librarians Group discussion

33 views
Adding alternate spellings to main author profile

Comments Showing 1-6 of 6 (6 new)    post a comment »
dateDown arrow    newest »

message 1: by [deleted user] (new)

Greetings,

I wanted to update the information on a book but ran into the issue of authors who have alternate spellings for their names. I searched the forums and found this post that said that we should add alternate spellings as a secondary (or in this case tertiary) author. Would it not be possible to have a single author profile and simply add either aliases or alternate spellings to the one entry? This way, one could add the author as it appears on the cover and be automatically directed to the main entry even if the spelling used is not the main one. Also, one wouldn't need knowledge of alternate spellings in order to add the book to the author's main profile (by adding in the alternate spelling as the secondary author). Finally, in my opinion, it looks rather disorganized to list the same author's name three separate times for the same work.

If, however, this method can't be changed, I have a couple of questions then. Using my original example, Shi-Kuo Chang has three different spellings: the main one just listed, S.K. Chang and Hsi-kuo Chang. Should a) all of his works be listed under each of the three spellings? and b) if I was to add biographical information, would I add that information to each entry?

PS. On this page the following sentence "Original name or other pen names can added" should probably read "be added".


message 2: by Empress (new)

Empress (the_empress) Are you sure those are the same authors?


message 3: by Sandra (new)

Sandra | 23782 comments Eric, it would probably be easier for us librarians, but it has been stated in the past that the database wouldn't be able to cope.

At the moment, if the author isn't a GR author, alternate names etc are listed in the bio of the author, as well as on the appropriate books, as you've stated.

Books are always listed with the author name on the cover, then appropriate alternatives.


message 4: by rivka, Librarian Moderator (new)

rivka | 42444 comments Mod
Sandra wrote: "Books are always listed with the author name on the cover, then appropriate alternatives."

Not quite correct if the different editions have different names on the cover.
In some cases, a book may be originally published under a pen name, but then later reissued under the author's original name. When this happens, the author listed for any and all editions should be the author name the book was originally published under - so the reissued edition would need its author name changed to the originally published pen name. Doing this will allow the various editions to be combined.




message 5: by [deleted user] (new)

Ellie [The Empress] wrote: "Are you sure those are the same authors?"

Hello Ellie,

Yes, they're all alternate spellings of the same author. Hsi-kuo Chang is how it's spelt on the front cover and in the preface. However, if you look at the copyright page, you'll see the additional two spellings (Shi-Kuo Chang is also the spelling on his Wikipedia page).

Eric, it would probably be easier for us librarians, but it has been stated in the past that the database wouldn't be able to cope.

Hello Sandra,

Yes, I was thinking it might be an issue with the way the database is set up, thanks for your response. So, if I wanted to add date of birth and such information to the author, should I add the info separately to each of his three entries on file?


message 6: by Sandra (new)

Sandra | 23782 comments Yes Eric, he is the same person after all.


back to top