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This topic contains 29 replies, has 3 voices, and was last updated by Em Fairley Em Fairley 5 months ago.

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  • #27258
    Em Fairley
    Em Fairley
    Participant

    Both myself and a friend of mine, who I will recommend this site to, are considering publishing novels under pen names, but we’re not sure how to go about this. All help is appreciated, thanks!

    #27260

    Jennifer Mattern
    Keymaster

    Do you have any specific questions? Where are you located? That can affect what you need to do in order to operate under a pen name.

    Here are a couple of older posts that might help:

    – This first post covers some of the marketing considerations you’ll want to keep in mind when choosing a pen name.

    – This post goes over the reasons I personally chose to use pseudonyms, so it might highlight a few points you haven’t considered yet (like search engine rankings — so you’ll want to make sure it’s not a highly competitive name).

    If you have specific questions, please let us know. :)

    Jennifer Mattern - Owner 3 Beat Media

    Professional Blogger, Freelance Business Writer, Author

    #27261
    Em Fairley
    Em Fairley
    Participant

    Thanks Jenn, I’ll take a look at the posts you mention tomorrow when I can focus on them fully :). I’ll be sure to ask any questions that either of us may still have afterwards.

    #27263

    Jennifer Mattern
    Keymaster

    Not a problem. I’ll certainly be poking around here. :)

    Jennifer Mattern - Owner 3 Beat Media

    Professional Blogger, Freelance Business Writer, Author

    #27272
    Em Fairley
    Em Fairley
    Participant

    Thanks again! The posts you mention have been a great source of help and inspiration. Both myself and my friend are wanting to use pseudonyms for privacy purposes, because neither novel that we’re working on will fit with our current well-known public personas. I’ve even decided on my pen name’s first name, Rebekah, but I’m unsure at this point of a last name for “her” :)

    #27273

    Jennifer Mattern
    Keymaster

    I had two strategies in mind for that, although I ended up using neither. ;)  I settled on a first name first, and the last name just popped into my head for some reason. It’s now the last name for two pen names — one with a full first name and one with just initials (the genre specialties are loosely related, so that made sense).

    1. If you want to stay true to yourself in some way, you could use a family name — a maiden name, your mother’s maiden name, a last name a few generations back, etc.

    2. You could look to your genre. What sells well? What author are people most likely to look for as they browse the shelves of their local library or bookstore? Figure that out, then choose a name that would be located near them (or that might be similar enough to come up in search results in some online bookstores, though that’s a trickier issue).

    I would say the second option is less important with so many people buying books online these days. But it still might spark a few ideas. :)

    Jennifer Mattern - Owner 3 Beat Media

    Professional Blogger, Freelance Business Writer, Author

    #27274
    Em Fairley
    Em Fairley
    Participant

    I read the post where you mention Aria and I love that name! Rebekah is the name I’d chosen for my first born, though he ended up being Matthew lol. When I thought about using that, I also thought it goes well with my friend’s last name, so will mention it to him first and see what he thinks. He’s my best friend, so it wouldn’t really be a case of permission :)

    I like the bookstore idea too. You’ve definitely given us some food for thought and I’ll share everything with my friend when he gets back from his current business trip :)

    #27275

    Jennifer Mattern
    Keymaster

    My hubby actually wanted to use Aria for our first daughter (if we’re lucky enough to have children he’s decided they’ll all be girls because that seems to be his lot in life, growing up in a house with just his mom and sisters). lol  But it was my pen name first. I’d considered it anyway, and for a while that was still our plan. But I’ve slowly eased him away from the idea. So anyway, coming up with a name for the horror genre was easy then. I just combined the A from Aria (for mysteries) with J for Jenn, and voila. Instant pen name. ;)

    The one I’m less comfortable with is the one I chose for writing children’s books — Poppy Andersen. Again, it just came to me one day and I went with it. I wanted Anderson with an “o.” But that version wasn’t available as a Twitter handle. Yes, I know it’s a silly thing, but I use it heavily for networking so I wanted a name I could work with cross-platform. I wasn’t even thinking about Hans Christian Andersen at the time, which is why I’m not such a fan now. I wanted something close to the Bs, not something directly alongside a popular children’s author like that. On one hand I’m semi-stuck with it because I’ve already started working with it online. But if it really bothers me enough, I’ll change it and start over.

    Jennifer Mattern - Owner 3 Beat Media

    Professional Blogger, Freelance Business Writer, Author

    #27276
    Em Fairley
    Em Fairley
    Participant

    Considering twitter and other online areas isn’t silly at all. You can’t register a website name if it’s already taken and so that would discount that idea also. Another friend of mine has suggested I use a name ending in “son”, but I’m not so sure it fits in the romance genre. I’ll look more into the name today :)

    #27277

    Jennifer Mattern
    Keymaster

    I had the domain registration issue with AJ Klein. It was already registered, but at the time it wasn’t being used yet. So I emailed the owner to see if they’d consider selling it. That was a mistake.

    It was some crazy woman who kept going on about what a musical prodigy her son was, and that’s why she registered the name, so basically when he becomes famous he’ll have a site. I’m pretty sure there is a site now. The email she sent was hilarious. So I went with AJKleinBooks.com for that one instead. Probably good to differentiate anyway given that there is also a football player with that name. This domain makes it very clear it’s for the writer.

    Jennifer Mattern - Owner 3 Beat Media

    Professional Blogger, Freelance Business Writer, Author

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