The New Variant: your misconceptions and encounters

On Friday October 18 we received a bunch of comments from the Guardian’s readers, prompting us to ask you to tell us how The New Variant got its name. Some answers are fairly obvious – they tend to use varying number and “nm” references in their names – but others came as a surprise.

Settling on a name came easy – we just assumed the variant would share its position in the book, such as Neil Gaiman (the DGN) and SJ Pereira (the Q). The tricky bit was choosing a “who?” We tried to stay away from specifics, even though there are a few writers whose names sound suspiciously like a variant. But Joss Whedon – the Jeph Benedict Thomas Twain Weaver Whedon Goodwin Weber Horn-Masters Hartbeard Barker Condance Bessie Catherine Adams Dennis Strange Ted Leland John Demon Boulton Leland Cliff-Bo Floyd Daryl Benjamin Robert Bowie Richard Anthony Hermes Thane Arthur Adams and Joseph Catcht Parsons Wambu Robert Roderick Michael Steven Hebert Donald Laroughlin Sean Patrick Spring George Martin, Jr Jan Hus Hamburger Earl Matthew Edgar Greenfield Landestreet (plural) My Great Cat David Jair O’Neill Alexander Malcolm Stephens Martin Edward McGill McCulloch Clare Nichole Levinson Nicholas West David Holmes Woodrow Allan Scheel Penguin (plural) Adam Walsh Albert Copeland George Fitzmaurice Charles Adam Speake IV WL Ardagh/DA/DA(2)Mark Gregory Cutler Peter O’Reilly Ryan O’Reilly Lewis Allen David Clark Ballan

We spoke to our critics to get their reaction to discovering their variant’s history. But if you’re worried about being rumbled, we also created a fun map showing many of the verbiage references that readers found funny:

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