1. Darin Peaker
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    Darin Peaker Member

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    Curious as to why more people haven't used their real name as a user name.

    Discussion in 'The Lounge' started by Darin Peaker, Jul 8, 2012.

    Part of being a writer is self-promotion. Part of that is simply getting your name out there. With that in mind, I'm curious as to why more members don't use their name on the forum. I've seen some good writing here, and if I'm cruising Amazon, for example, I'd be more inclined to buy if I recognized the name (and had positive associations with it) from here.

    I chose to use my own name with the above in mind, and now I feel a mite self-conscious about that choice--have I committed a faux pas? Perhaps I should have picked something safe like DarkLord420, or Vampire69. ; )

    Of course, the irony is I've decided to publish under a pen name 'cause my book has lots of hot alien sex and head explosions and is NSFW, i.e. safe to have associated with my day job.

    Just curious.
     
  2. Cogito
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    Cogito Former Mod, Retired Supporter Contributor

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    Because it's the internet. And when I joined, my sole interest was improving my own writing as a hobby, with no interest in publishing.

    Things change.

    By the way, many members here are under twenty. They really shouldn't be spreading too mmuch personal information.
     
  3. Steph4136
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    Steph4136 Senior Member

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    Mine is my real name. Well, not including the numbers (those numbers are two of my favorite DMB songs btw). It's a handle I've used online for years and years and my old fallback when I can't think of a new user name.
     
  4. ChickenFreak
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    ChickenFreak Contributing Member Contributor

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    What, I can't publish as ChickenFreak? What's with that?

    OK, seriously, I'm far enough from being publishable that publicizing my name seems irrelevant. I don't know that you want to see a writer develop; it makes me think of the old saying about seeing the sausage being made.
     
  5. Youniquee
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    Youniquee (◡‿◡✿) Contributor

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    Because I feel uncomfortable exposing my name to random people on the internet...
     
  6. chicagoliz
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    chicagoliz Contributing Member Contributor

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    Mine is my internet handle that I've had for years now. I've actually become paranoid that some people could recognize me from that! Like Steph mentioned, I use it when I can't think of a new user name. Also, I don't want a bunch of different user names at different sites, because that would be just one more thing to keep track of. Mine also includes part of my real name, and since I've used it for so long, I've become kind of attached to it.

    Your point about it being a writing site and wanting to publicize your name is a good one. Since I'm not yet published, I'm not in a marketing mode. I'm on another writing site that has a lot of established, published authors, and the default there is your real name. You have to make an effort to change it. (Apparently this changed not too long ago, although at some point before I joined, because I saw older posts and some signatures where the person puts something like "used to be know as..." or "a.k.a" some handle. But again, that site has more already published authors and has more of an emphasis on marketing and publishing issues, so it probably makes sense that that site changed over to real names.
     
  7. Lemex
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    Lemex That's Lord Lemex to you. Contributor

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    'Lemex' is a nice little alias I've used for a long time, ever since there were servers for Half-Life operating and I was in middle school. Yes! That long ago!

    A handful of people on this site know my real name, but that's because I trust them with knowing it. I like my anonymity, especially since I became a mod. Even if it's only partial I find it something of a comfort. And where work is concerned: I'll think about that when I feel I need to.
     
  8. shadowwalker
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    shadowwalker Contributing Member Contributor

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    I prefer to maintain as much privacy and security as possible - and that's unlikely to change regardless of my publishing status. No offense to anyone on any writing forum, but I'm not planning on forums producing a major portion of my readership anyway.
     
  9. Citizen Gallagher
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    Citizen Gallagher Member

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    Mine has half my real name in it, and I will always make it known, one way or another, that my first name is John. I just like using Citizen Gallagher as my online pseudonym as it is a homage to one of my favourite films 'Citizen Kane' and one of my favourite comedy shows when I was a kid 'Citizen Smith'. Any professional publishing and I would use my full name.
     
  10. Darkkin
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    Darkkin Reflection of a nobody Contributor

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    Those who need to know my name, know it. Those who don't, well, they don't. I've been an anonymous profile and data blip most of my life, so I assumed a name that actually has some meaning for me. I am Darkkin. Nothing more, nothing less, but just what I need to be.

    - Darkkin
     
  11. Brinda
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    Brinda New Member

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    Mine is my actual nickname. (I was teaching some kids in the Carribbean to play hockey, and they couldn't understand that my name was just "Brynn" so they all called me Brinda.) There isn't much anonymity to it because if you know me, then you know that I post under Brinda. My involvement with this forum isn't to get my name out there, it's to learn and be among like-minded people. So I like the casualness of just using my nickname.

    If you like having your name as your username, then good on you. I don't think that you've committed a "faux pas" or anything like that. It's all about what you feel comfortable with.
     
  12. Thumpalumpacus
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    Thumpalumpacus Contributing Member

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    I'm not comfortable with my real name being aired online.
     
  13. Darin Peaker
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    Darin Peaker Member

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    As opposed to random people at a bookstore, or online store?
     
  14. Darin Peaker
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    Darin Peaker Member

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    Thank you for the replies.

    It's funny. I'm the farthest thing from a self-promoter as is possible, but I had just finished reading some stuff about establishing name recognition online and using my real name was my first, conscious step in that direction. (Probably an utterly naive, horribly inexperienced and ultimately futile one, but a step nonetheless.) And I already I regret it. (Actually, I'd probably get more sales if I published as "Sauron", my usual tag on websites.)

    Thank you, Chicagoliz, for acknowledging the validity of my question, and Brinda for making me feel like less of an idiot.

    Well enough time spent on navel-gazing about promotion, it's time to go back to rummaging around in my mental attic for words, a past-time I'm much more comfortable with. I only have a couple of hours to kill three named characters and a hundred or so red-shirts. Time to lock and load.

    Thanks again,
    Sauron
     
  15. Complex
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    Complex Senior Member

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    Certain things have a tendency to disappear if I do not use pen names or use different names. I've refrained form posting my work online after the last incident... I rather not be associated with the writer of certain works either because people go 'Oh you wrote that fanfic? Are you going to post another chapter soon?' Uh... No, I got over lame fanfic ninja stories because I am confident in my own abilities. If you liked my work, I can anonymously appreciate it in silence. I don't need people making requests.

    If you write smut then maybe a pen name is a good idea, but in general, that wall of anonymity is very much a standard in Japan. Do things you like and are cool, but don't be vain or throw yourself out there. Anonymity is to separate the work from the individual as it is to separate the individual from the work. One should not be synonymous with the other.
     
  16. killbill
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    killbill Contributing Member

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    Being anonymous helps me to take me seriously here (had bad experiences in other sites in the past), because English is not my first language. I am from the far far east. Anyway, this site discourages self promotion if I am not wrong, so...
     
  17. Darin Peaker
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    Darin Peaker Member

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    My book isn't pornographic, it's just adult. Cursing, sex, violence, etc. But my day job is working with children, so that would be a problem. I will use a pen name for that reason--as I said, its ironic that I put my name out there only to later realize it was pointless.
     
  18. Youniquee
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    Youniquee (◡‿◡✿) Contributor

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    Yes, even then I probably won't give my name at a book store lol. I only give my name if I'm required to. I have a choice in terms of this. Besides, I'm kind of young. I don't think flinging my name around the e-net is the greatest idea.
     
  19. mammamaia
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    mammamaia nit-picker-in-chief Contributor

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    my username is my publishing name with only 'mamma' added, since that's what i am [of 7 birth-kids and countless mentee ones]... andwhen i sign my posts, it's always with my 'real' name, maia...
     
  20. Lydia
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    Lydia Contributing Member Contributor

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    I've kinda made it a habit to use my real name (not necessarily my surname as well) when signing up somewhere. Even if it is the internet. (Or maybe using my name would lead serial killers to my house? Maybe.)
     
  21. andyscribe
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    andyscribe Member

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    For me, when I set up my blog, my real name wasn't available so I chose Andyscribe in a hurry - I'm not over keen on it but it does a job. Then I decided to keep the same user name for all the writing sites I use, just for ease.

    You make good point about getting your name out there though Lydia. Maybe I'll try and change it once I see how my writing's received.
     
  22. peachalulu
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    peachalulu Contributing Member Reviewer Contributor

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    My real name is pretty and sounds exactly like a romance author. In fact it would've been the perfect name for a romance author but it's not my genre. I like reading romances but don't often write them. My writing is quirky and I don't want assumptions based on my name. It would be the same if it was vice versa. Would a woman want to read a romance written by Hortense Lurch? Would a man want to read an action thriller from a man named Eggbert Fiffle? People can say they don't make assumptions based on names but I say ha! I say they make assuptions whether they want to admit it or not.

    When I publish it will be under a man's name which I still haven't chosen.
    Why I don't use my real name here - this is the internet.
     
  23. darkhaloangel
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    darkhaloangel Active Member

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    In a way if I do become a successful writer - or successful at anything - I don't neccessarily want to be known for posts on writing forums. It's like having people listen in to conversations with friends. I think privacy is something we under appreciate.
     
  24. TheTrain
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    TheTrain Member

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    It's just not advised. I'm using my nickname, and I also have a slight reputation to keep up; I doubt I'll run into many people that would even know who I was, but just in case it's best not to use my real name. Those who know my nickname would still be at a loss, it seems there's a lot of people going by "Train". :D
     
  25. rick_danger
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    rick_danger Member

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    they like their privacy.
     

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