Lucius Furius Out of Closet

Jan. 23, 2015

Jerry Specht revealed his 20-year use of the pseudonym “Lucius Furius” for his poems and other writings today….

I wrote a few poems in the early ‘70’s when I was in college. (Some of which I still think are pretty good.)   In the late ‘80’s and in the ‘90’s, I wrote about 40 poems, and a non-fiction book entitled Genius Ignored: Rembrandt, Vermeer, Bach, Thoreau, Melville, Van Gogh, Nabokov, and Casablanca .

In the early ‘90’s I tried to have these (print-)published, sending them to my few publishing contacts, and also blindly to other publishers. In doing so, I was faced with a quandary: if the poems were published under my name they would certainly become known to my employer and customers.   I wanted to feel free to write as I pleased, without thinking about possible repercussions. And I didn’t want to be “famous”, with people invading my privacy.   I decided to use a pseudonym: “Lucius Furius”.   

I needn’t have worried since it seemed that no one wanted to publish them anyway.   I submitted them to a few contests, also to no avail.

In the mid-‘90’s, just as I was despairing of publishing anything, the World Wide Web came along: a “democracy” in which anyone with a modicum of technical aptitude could put their writings out there…. The Web was inhabited mostly by “techies” in those days.   I think I was relatively early in bringing up my poetry and art pages in 1997….

I was still occasionally submitting my poems to contests and in 2004 managed to win the Short Grain Dramatic Monologue prize for “The Bushman Speaks”.

In 2006, I print-self-published most of my poems under the title, Scraps of Faith: 54 Poems of Lucius Furius, sending copies to certain friends. 

Why have I chosen this particular time to reveal this secret?   Because:

  1. it seems there will be no hoard of strangers beating down my door, imposing on my time and privacy; and

  2. it seems unlikely, at this point, that I will be writing things which need to be kept from my employer or customers.    And I don’t believe that any of the existing poems on the website could really be considered objectionable."    

For those of you familiar with Lucius but not Jerry:

* Jerry Specht Family History

* NOTIS History Webpage

Lucius email address: Lucius @
Jerry   email address: specht3 @