February 25, 2021 at 5:56 pm #125276
Any opinions/advice on using a pen name? I’ve been thinking about using my real first name and a different last name for any publication.
Semper ubi sub ubi.February 27, 2021 at 12:26 pm #125391Arindown (Gracie)@arindown
@sparrowhawke My only thought is that you have to be consistent with whatever name you pick, and to make sure you don’t have the same name as someone else.
I’m planning to use my real name, but instead of Grace, I’ll put Gracie, because there is already a writer with my name.
Not all who wander are lost.March 1, 2021 at 10:10 am #125518Daeus Lamb@daeus-lamb
People generally create a pen name because:
- They think readers have a bias against female authors so they make their name sound more masculine or gender neutral. I have no strong opinions on how true this is, but if you go this route consider using initials to hide your gender instead.
- They want to remain completely anonymous. If that’s you, you’ll need to take many other steps to maintain anonymity.
- They think it’s cool, or just what you do, or it’s more humble. (I disagree with all of these.)
- Their name is hard to remember or spell. Imagine if a big fan of yours is on a big podcast and he or she mentions you as their favorite author, so a bunch of people try to look you up online but can’t find you because your name is hard to spell. Tough luck. Maybe you should have used a pen name.
- They want to create distinct brands. For instance, I write fantasy. But say I wanted to write historical fiction. I would at least consider publishing my HF under a pen name to keep my brands separate.
If none of these (or the third category) apply to you, I recommend using your real name.
👖 🐢🐢🐢🐢🐢March 2, 2021 at 12:51 am #125577
Thank you for the detailed reply! I’ll definitely consider those points.
Semper ubi sub ubi.March 29, 2021 at 12:14 pm #126809R.M. Archer@r-m-archer
Wow this is late. Sorry.Another consideration if you’re a single female is that a pen name will prevent confusion if/when you get married; you won’t have to decide whether to change your publishing name or maintain your maiden name for publishing purposes because you’ll already have a pen name that’s its own thing.
Fantasy/dystopian/sci-fi author. Mythology nerd. ENFP. Singer.March 31, 2021 at 8:22 pm #127659
Thanks for the reply! I was thinking about that.
May I ask why you chose to go with a pen name? I’m thinking that when I start a blog, I’ll use just my first name, or first name and last two initials until I’m comfortable using my full name. (If I get published, I’d use my first and last name.)
Semper ubi sub ubi.March 31, 2021 at 10:52 pm #127706R.M. Archer@r-m-archer
Because I picked it when I was 15 and 1) was worried about privacy and 2) wanted a name that seemed “cooler” than my real name. XD I realized the no-name-change-required perk a bit later. Nowadays I use my real first name in a lot of situations, but I still use my pen name on published works and in my more professional online-only correspondence. I rarely include my real last name in any situation, for continued privacy reasons.
Fantasy/dystopian/sci-fi author. Mythology nerd. ENFP. Singer.
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