Friday, May 6

Pen Names



There was an interesting question on a loop about why a writer would use a pen name. But how secret is your identity when you use one? A pen name doesn't guarantee security. Does the name Judy Mays (pen name) ring a bell?

Just in case you haven't heard, an English teacher was given some negative press because a parent found out she wrote erotic romance and freaked out. Her secret identity was revealed. One of her former students made an excellent you tube video about it. Here's the link: http://youtu.be/T8gqyq-NRSE Funny thing is, the parent had to be an erotic romance fan to recognize her son's teacher. So parents can read erotic romance, but teachers can't write it? Really? But I digress.

Truth is, I considered writing under a pen name but decided against it. I kept coming up with names that made me sound like a stripper or a porn star. So for right now, it's just little ole me. Writing under my real name. Seeing that I'm not pubbed yet, that's not a problem. But I'm also not ashamed of what I write. I'm not saying that people who write under a pen name are. I'm sure there are a million different reasons why a person would use one. What would I do if it became a problem at my job? I don't know. What would you do?

10 comments:

  1. I'm self employed, so no work problems for me. But I do have a pen name. I have two grown daughters who probably don't want to be associated with their mommy's erotic fantasies even if they are in her novels.

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  2. I'm under my own name, like you Shawn. No particular, I just thought my name had a nice ring to it, and no one else had it...so why not?

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  3. I use my own name because I like it a lot, but if I switched genres in a big way, I'd use a pen name and hope like hell I didn't get confused. Not that I'm slow or anything, but...

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  4. I'm going to use a pen name, RG Senechal, for my YA stuff. Mostly because I'm writing a book I want boys to pick up (think JK Rowling)
    and the RG? Because it's margie without the m. I figure I'll hear it and still answer. LOL

    My initials are MI and that just seems like a joke. MI Senechal? Yes, I M.

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  5. I want the whole world to know the author of that fabulous book is ME!

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  6. I don't have a pen name now- my fantasy books would be in my name. BUT I do also have both a steampunk and a SF that I will be trying to sell at some point. I'm pretty sure I'd use pen names for both. Not as a secret, but just so someone who likes one of the genre's isn't thrown for a loop by picking up the other genre ;).

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  7. I'm not published yet either so the question is still up in the air. My problem - will it be harder to fix my name in the public mind if no one can spell or pronounce it? It sort of limits word of mouth support. What would you do if your name was Leszczuk?

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  8. I'll be honest, pen names irritate the hell out of me. Be proud of yourself, and what you write. Margie, in your case, it makes sense. But generally, I find it offensive when people don't hold their head and their genre up!
    And, Shawn, you have a great name!

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  9. Linda, I see your point. How do you pronounce your last name? Margie, nice concept for your pen name, and I can understand having one if you write different genres. A lot of authors use pen names for that very reason. I'm glad you like my name D'Ann. I was starting to think it was too long or too plain.

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  10. Shawn, it's not bad if you use Polish phonetics instead of English. Their sz is like our sh and their cz is like our sh, so it translates to Lesh' chuk (although most people end up pronouncing it Lezchuk).

    (My maiden name was Masterson. Much easier.)

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