Follow by Email

Monday, July 8, 2013

When a Pseudonym Would Have Worked

I've been asked several times during my latest round of book tours who my favorite author is.

I didn't used to hesitate. I knew the author's name and the books she'd written which are still my favorites. Though I've read many authors over the years, her writing continues to remind me why I fell in love with books.

Then why can't I tell people who she is?

It's an awkward situation. I would love to recommend her but I have difficulty doing it.

You see, I fell in love with her books because she wrote suspense. There was some romance woven throughout but I always admired the way in which she handled it. There was enough to make my knees weak but not so much that I had to cover the book in a plain brown wrapper.

And then she started writing gay porn.

I truly don't mind if others enjoy porn or gay or lesbian porn. But it honestly doesn't do anything for me to read about two men together. I can't -- and don't want to -- envision myself as one of them. And if I can't place myself in the role of one of the characters, the words on the page are... just words.

I also know if I say she's my favorite author and readers begin looking for her books, they'll wonder about my taste in books... or perhaps my taste in general.

You see, this author did not use a pseudonym for this new genre. And personally, I think she should have.

It would have been easy for people to find out that she writes in two genres and under two names. But if I recommend her books to someone else under one name, the other books wouldn't be so obvious.

But now if I recommend her and the reader remembers only her name, they're likely to see her latest works - her gay porn books - in the same list as her suspense, and...

It's awkward for me.

Would you feel the same way if you were me? Do you think she should have used a pseudonym? Or do you think I am being overly conservative?

2 comments:

Thomas Norwood said...

I think this author definitely should have changed pseudonyms. I write on a number of subjects, science fiction and business development, and I have a different name for each of them because each is a totally different product. All companies do it. Even when they're selling something similar. Look at Loreal and Lancome. Toyota and Lexus. Audi and VW. Nestle - they have hundreds of brand names. It helps consumers (in our case readers) find us and label us and recommend us because we are "experts" in that field. It stops people getting confused or (as in your case) uncomfortable.

p.m.terrell said...

Thank you so much for dropping in and leaving a comment, Thomas. I am really glad you pointed out the various companies who have different brand names depending on the product. So many authors don't realize that what they have is a brand, and each brand attracts different audiences. Thanks for the thought provoking response!