I recall a dear friend of getting some hard times for using a pen name, especially one that is different to sex, but this is hardly a new thing, and I can understand why some people want to use a name that is sexually ambiguous, or flat out different, because certain genres people seem to like a certain sex to be writing them. (Because as we know the public at large can often be picky, shallow and just flat out stupid at times.)
For myself I change my mind often about what I am going to do. Currently as you know I have a pen name, one that isn’t so different from my real name and just to really separate my personal life from my writing life just a bit. I don’t think there is any right or wrong to it, and I have contemplated a different pen name if I branch out into different genres.
I recall reading somewhere that people used pen names when they were writing multiple books a year in different genres because people tended to not want to fork out money for the same author too quickly but would happily buy a book by another person. Which sounds logical if a little strange…
And then it brings the thought….what about the fan base you have on your first name, how do you make sure they all know that it is you, or should you be happy that new people who might be biased against the original work not being up their alley can find your new stuff and like it without that stigma….okay I’m rambling now but it made me think…again….about the topic.

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  1. I figure I’ll use pen names that are variations on my real name for different genres. Like, Kya Drake for my elven series, Yana Drake fro the fallen angel urban fantasy series, etc. Because then my fans can know what else I’ve written (and that’s it’s me), but so that they can see that the name is slightly different to the genre they’re interested in. Like, Nora Robberts/JD Rob, she has one name in romance and another name in thriller/suspense. We all know it’s her, but we can say “hey, I like her writing in this genre and not this other genre, so I’ll buy everything under this name.”

    Or… something like that. 🙂

    1. Yeah if I have many I reckon I’ll play around my name too. I was going to use Jai instead of Justine because for the longest time that was my nickname and what everyone called me.

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