1. Kstaraga

    Kstaraga Member

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    Are Pen Names Worth It?

    Discussion in 'Marketing' started by Kstaraga, Feb 26, 2021.

    I've been thinking about using a pen name for a while, but wonder - is it worth the trouble? I have thought of one, but it seems like it'd be easy for people to find out these days with public records and the internet. Your thoughts?
     
  2. Damage718

    Damage718 Active Member

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    For me personally, I did not use a pen name because I'd been published in many other sources (newspaper, magazine, blog, etc.) under my real name, so I felt that writing/promoting a book on my channels under a pen name would have felt a bit awkward and maybe even confusing. Plus -- and this may be a stretch but I've heard of authors in similar situations -- it's like another persona you have to keep up. Like if you do a book signing, interview, or someone writes an article about you, it'd be about your pen name which isn't completely YOU. I mean, it is, but it isn't, if that makes sense? These are the reasons I chose to not use a pen name.

    But it does work. Tons of authors do it. Some even publish works under multiple names.

    In the end, it's really all up to you. I don't think there's a wrong answer. Just my 2 cents :)
     
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  3. Ed from Bama

    Ed from Bama New Member

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    Good morning to all-
    I've published stuff both under my name and an assumed name. I never found any particular advantage for using a pen name, really. In my opinion, those words that follow "by" following the title are the most unimportant words of the whole piece, but then that's just me.

    good day to all- Ed
     
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  4. Kstaraga

    Kstaraga Member

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    Definitely good points to consider :p I've been contemplating if I'd even be able to keep up with it, too, because there's friends and family that'd love to read my book, but I'm not sure if they'd go tell the world my pen name.
     
  5. Kstaraga

    Kstaraga Member

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    Interesting perspective :D
     
  6. SofiaMatias

    SofiaMatias New Member

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    There are three reasons that authors seem to have to use a pen name: they want to protect their real name, for whatever reason, they are playing into the conventions of the genre they write, or they just felt like it.

    Examples: Claudia Gray chose a pen name because she thought it would be fun, but now appreciates the benefits of writing under a name that is not her own (here's an interesting read about her thought process behind it). Nora Roberts writes a thriller series as J.D. Robb, Victoria Schwab writes adult fantasy as V.E. Schwab and even J.K. Rowling decided to use her initials instead of her full name, all because these are genres predominantly written by males (in Rowling's case, it was more a 'boys don't want to read books written by women' case), so using a pen name helps their sales.
     
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  7. Alex Mahon

    Alex Mahon New Member

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    It's a good way to differentiate your genre. I've altered mine for the two genres.
     
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  8. J.T. Woody

    J.T. Woody Life is Dynamite Contributor

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    my short stories and novel WIPs are almost all under the umbrella of Science Fiction/Fantasy, however, I do have a few fluffy, outliers that, if I were to publish them, would want under a different name.

    the most useless Pen Name i've seen was recently. The author's bio at the back of the book said that the [NAME] is the assumed name for the writer [WRITER'S ACTUAL NAME] and is the combination of his middle name and his wife's maiden name. He changed his name for security purposes because he fled the Middle East and is worried about retaliation for his book. apparently he's in hiding in the UK.
    Author also has his photo to accompany this bio.

    why even bother to change your name if you're just going to include a PHOTO OF YOURSELF and your REAL NAME and information like YOUR WIFE'S MAIDEN NAME and ALSO that you are IN HIDING FROM PEOPLE WHO MIGHT WANT TO KILL YOU AND GIVE YOUR LOCATION????
     
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  9. Homer Potvin

    Homer Potvin Funky like your grandpa's drawers.... Staff Contributor

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    Marketing. The book must have something important--re: dangerous--to say if it spawned an international manhunt. Better buy it if you want to help topple the establishment, fight injustice, walk the light path, etc. I mean, he's risking his life to bring it to us. Least we can do is contribute a few bucks.
     
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