Author Topic: New pen name?  (Read 406 times)  

Offline Anna Drake

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New pen name?
« on: May 18, 2017, 11:05:52 PM »
I am writing a romantic suspense story which I hope to turn into an RS series.. The problem is my previous books have been mostly cozy mysteries.  Since the RS stories contain grittier scenes than the cozies, I wonder if should I write the RS under a new pen name? To do so though, feels like starting all over again. I don't know which approach to try.


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Offline PaulineMRoss

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Re: New pen name?
« Reply #1 on: May 19, 2017, 12:57:49 AM »
I am writing a romantic suspense story which I hope to turn into an RS series.. The problem is my previous books have been mostly cozy mysteries.  Since the RS stories contain grittier scenes than the cozies, I wonder if should I write the RS under a new pen name? To do so though, feels like starting all over again. I don't know which approach to try.

I would say if you can possibly get away with using the same name, do so. It's hard work starting from scratch with a new name, not to mention the doubled efforts to maintain a website, social media presence, mailing list, etc, etc. So long as you tell your existing readers that the new series is grittier, and use clear cover branding to signal the difference, it shouldn't be a problem.
   

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Offline RBN

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Re: New pen name?
« Reply #2 on: May 19, 2017, 02:30:19 AM »
Since it's not a huge leap (like from, say, children's books to erotica) and there's no associated need to keep your various identities secret, you could simply add a new pseudonym to your existing presence. Update your website/social media/newsletter/author page to Sally Writer/Jane Q. Author, keep what you've built, take advantage of any crossover that exists, and still have a clear distinction that these are two different kinds of writing. You can even buy the domain for Jane Q. Author and forward it to Sally Writer's URL so newcomers aren't confused when they see Sally's link in Jane's book.

I can see why you might want some distinction between the two, but it seems unnecessary in this situation to do a full start from scratch. I'd vote pseudonym and consolidate under one roof.

Offline Anna Drake

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Re: New pen name?
« Reply #3 on: May 19, 2017, 05:15:48 AM »
Thank you, Pauline and RBN for responding. I like what you're both saying!


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Online cecilia_writer

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Re: New pen name?
« Reply #4 on: May 19, 2017, 05:31:18 AM »
I've thought of doing this as I do have some readers who seem to resent me writing anything except my main mystery series, but in the end I decided it would be too much of a hassle, as Pauline has said. I think if the series branding is different enough they have no excuse for thinking it's going to be the same sort of thing.

Offline VanessaC

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Re: New pen name?
« Reply #5 on: May 19, 2017, 06:08:22 AM »
I'm no expert, but as a pretty avid reader, I'm perfectly comfortable with authors writing in different genres, as long as it's clear from the book itself what you're getting. My main reading is various flavours of fantasy, but I will happily follow authors I like into their sci-fi ventures, and across various bands of fantasy.

There was a thread a while back with someone having a similar dilemma and one of the posters there referred to Elle Casey - maybe worth checking out her website as her tagline is "fiction in several flavors" which I thought was a really clever way of keeping all her genres together under one name.  From a quick look, she's very careful about the branding for each genre - making it clear to readers what they are getting.

Best of luck.

Offline Cheryl Douglas

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Re: New pen name?
« Reply #6 on: May 19, 2017, 12:32:27 PM »
I would say if you can possibly get away with using the same name, do so. It's hard work starting from scratch with a new name, not to mention the doubled efforts to maintain a website, social media presence, mailing list, etc, etc. So long as you tell your existing readers that the new series is grittier, and use clear cover branding to signal the difference, it shouldn't be a problem.

This 100%. I came here with a similar question a couple of months ago. I write contemporary romance, but wanted to write steamier, grittier stuff and was worried about offending my core audience. Everyone told me to go for it, and differentiate the new books somehow, either with sexier covers or a disclaimer. I released the first of these sexier books to my readers a couple of days ago and the response has been overwhelmingly positive. Turns out they wanted me to write this kind of book. Who knew? Sometimes when you follow your gut and take readers along for the ride the pay-off can be huge! Good luck with your new books.

Offline Morgan Worth

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Re: New pen name?
« Reply #7 on: May 19, 2017, 02:11:45 PM »
I would just make sure your RS covers are clearly branded and obviously different from the cozies.
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