Say it with me slowly: Co-nig-lee-aro
That beautiful piece of work is my last name. As you can probably imagine, going through grade school with that on all your papers could be rather interesting at times. I remember, when I was first learning to write, being afraid I might forget how to spell it.
I'm quite proud of my last name. I love the way it trips people up, though I don't understand why it does. Its pronounced exactly like its spelled. For some reason a vast majority of people want to say "Congliario." I will never understand why. I always loved the first day of school because I always looked forward to hearing how my new teachers would decide my name was pronounced. It got to the point that, even if there were six other Katies in the class, I could always tell they had reached my name by the pause that never failed to occur whenever someone saw my last name for the first time. I quickly came to go by Katie C or Conig. Unfortunately I couldn't very well be announced as Katie Conig at my graduation ceremony. I don't remember what our vice-principle came up with, but it was most certainly not my last name.
The one thing that always bothered me was that in every class that had more than one Katie I became Katie C. Now in order for you to understand why this bothered me you must first know this: my name is not short for anything. My name is not Kaitlyn or Katherine or Kathleen. My full and legal name is Katie Conigliaro. I have only met one or two other Katies whose full name is Katie, and none of them were in any of my classes. And yet somehow, even though I was the only real Katie in, I'm fairly certain my entire graduating class, the others always got to go by Katie while I became Katie C. That drove me crazy. To this day whenever I have to say my name is Katie C (namely whenever the buzzers are broken at Fuel and they have to call out finished orders) I instantly feel like I'm 12 years old.
I've discovered that my name does not confuse as many of my professors as it did my teachers, although now I am often asked if I have an Uncle Tony (if you too were wondering, no, I don't). However my last name makes an impression. Its rather difficult to forget a name like Conigliaro, which I have found to be an advantage. I intend to keep Conigliaro as my publishing name, even after I get married and change it. Especially considering my boyfriend's last name is Harris. Somehow I think Katie Conigliaro would stand out a bit more than Katie Harris. And it will look much cooler on the cover of a book.