Saturday, March 8, 2014

Pen names or real name, who can choose?

I was recently approached and had it suggested to me that now is the time to start thinking about a pen name.

What is a pen name?  Well, long story short, it is an alas name you use when you write.

Many authors will do things like use their initials (eg: J.K. Rowling) instead of their full name.

However, with a name like Smith, what can you do to it to make it distinguishable from any other Smith out there?

My maiden name is Patterson, and at first I thought that could be an agreeable alternative.  Though, when you search on Amazon, you get "Suzanne's Diary for Nicholas by James Patterson."  I can assure you I do not want to be competing with him! (on a side note, I read that book!  It was good but I cried like a baby... but we'll leave that for another time)

So the alternative is to change my last name completely. 

For some reason I'm not comfortable with this.  I have written down various versions of my name using different last names and, though the ones I have narrowed down sound pleasing enough, it makes me feel as though someone is taking my work and putting their name on it.

Obviously this is silly.  I wrote my story, it will belong to me, but to put a name other than Suzanna Smith on it feels as though I'm selling out.  Why is that?  Well, mainly because, I am Suzanna Smith. 

So now I am stuck trying to decide what to do about my author name.  Who knew writing the book was the easy part?

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