Did you know that author Anne Rice was born “Howard Allen O’Brien”?
The vampire novelist (and creator of Lestat) was born in New Orleans in 1941 to Howard and Katherine O’Brien. “Howard” came from her father — who went by Mike most of the time, ironically — and “Allen” was her mother’s maiden name.
Apparently she went by both names together as a youngster; Anne said in a recent interview that she “was Howard Allen, it was a double name” [vid].
Anne didn’t like having a male name, though, so in the first grade she started calling herself “Anne.” Eventually her name was legally changed to Anne O’Brien.
All three of Anne’s sisters (Alice, Tamara, and Karen) were given traditionally female names at birth.
[Related post: Stanley Ann Dunham, who later dropped the “Stanley.”]
Source: Ramsland, Katherine. Anne Rice Reader. New York: Ballantine Books, 1997.