Sunday, March 20, 2011


Hello Everyone,

I'm blogging about pseudonyms because I want to get your thoughts on a new name. When I first started writing, I tried to figure out a new name for myself. I came up with Alice Walker, my mother's middle name and maiden name. LOL Guess what? There was a very famous author with that name. I tried other variations, but none of them seemed right.

I kept trying to figure something out, but everyone said you don't want to use a name at the end of the alphabet, or your books will be placed at the end of the shelves for that genre. I don't have to worry about that problem any more because my books aren't on shelves. They are on digital sites.

The reason, I have started thinking about using a pseudonym again is because there is a children's author out there with the name of Sandra K. Marshall. Another author writes about addictions. Our books are being placed together at Amazon and Good Reads, which is very confusing for my readers. There are probably other places that are doing the same thing, but I haven't looked.

What do you think? Should I change my name, and what should it be? How do I come up with a name? What about S.K. Zinn-Marshall, K.A. Walker, or something not even related to me? There are an awful lot of Sandra K. Marshall's out there who aren't authors. lol

Then I have to worry if my readers will follow me, or not? Worry! Worry!

On to another topic, Fool Me Twice is up now at Amazon.

Thank you for listening to me rant a bit.

See you next Sunday, and I hope all of you have a great week.



Christie Craig said...

Good question, Sandy. There are a lot of Christie Craigs out there, too. Even one who is a writer. But I think I'll hang on to my name. And I think the world is big enough for two Sandra Marshalls. LOL.


Edie Ramer said...

If Christie says to go with Sandra Marshall, I won't disagree. Besides, you already have books out in your name, so that might be confusing to your readers.

susan said...

stay with your name..anyone who reads your books know you from the others. susan L.

Sandy said...

Thank you, Christie. Wow! Isn't it just amazing how many have our names?

Thanks, Edie. I'm actually using Sandra K. Marshall, and there are a couple of authors out there with that name and others with just Sandra Marshall.

Thank you, Susan. I really appreciate your comment.

Kim Bowman Author said...

Hi Sandy. If you've already published under this name, I'd definitely keep it. plus, anyone who looks up the other authors will get you too!!

Rebecca Royce said...

Hi Sandy
I took a course this weekend given by Angela James, executive editor at Carina Press. She says the trick is not so much the name, although it matters. I think she said something like do you want to be Suzie Floozie or Nora Roberts? But to come up with a brand for yourself. So, you're Sandra Marshall and you do heart hitting contemporary romances that also make the reader think. As long as you stick to, and develop your brand, it shouldn't matter how many other authors out there have the same name.

Mike O'Hare said...

It's the same with two books or more that have the same name. It wasn't until we got our book on to Amazon when I realized that there was another novel under the title of "The Meadow." That has been an advantage rather than a hindrance. Definitely stay with your original name, Sandy.

Linda LaRoque said...

I agree with the others. Keep your name. You already have a readership.

Mia Marlowe said...

I think the hyphenated pen name you're considering might be confusing. I usually think writers who use only initials are trying to mask their gender.

As one who's had more than one pen name, I wouldn't recommend changing unless the request is coming from your publisher. However, if you're concerned for your privacy and want to use a pen name for that reason, I support you.

Sandy said...

Thanks, Kim. Now, that I didn't think of. I do get Google alerts, and we're all on there. Even Sandra Bullock shows on mine. lol In real good company there. Smile.

Thank you, Rebecca. I'm getting a great consensus from everyone.

Mike, I never thought about that. Thank you.

Thank you, Linda. lol Sometimes, I wonder if I have a readership.

Fran Lee said...

You could do as I do and use your first and middle names. Sandra Kay sounds short and sweet and is closer to the front of the alphabet. :)

Sandy said...

Thank you, Fran. I do know another author named Sandra Kay. lol

Jadette Paige said...

Hi Sandy!

I use a form of real name for most of my books. When I decided to write in another genre, I started to use a pen name that was different than my first author name. I did this because I did not want to put the two together.

So if you change your name, do it because what you're writing under with the new name is different than what you normally write. Of course that means you'll be just about starting over. I know I had to but I've found it was so worth it!

Celia Yeary said...

Definitely keep your name. You'd confuse more people than might be confused now on Amazon.
NO ONE in the world has my name.
But my books are confused. One is titled Texas Blue and it's been out since 2009. Jodi Thomas, Queen of Western Romance, has a new book out title--Texas Blue. PLUS--she has bluebonnet on the front, and my next Texas book, Texas Promise has bluebonnets!
Her book is listed with mine now, but so far, mine comes first in a vertical showing of covers.
Another good writer friend, Linda Swift, is often confused with an artist by the same name. Linda had to use a .net for her website.
Good luck with your new release!Celia

Pat Dale said...

Hi, Sandy. I'm going to be the contrarian here. While I would continue with your present name for any more of the series of books you're getting out there now, you might want to go with something a bit more folksey for newer things. I'd recommend Sandy Kay; it's easy to say and type and I find it less formal.
By the way, my use of Pat Dale seems to go over very well. More than half of my posts now come to it rather than to my real name. As a sidenote, my editor of several of my books only learned when she was contracting me for her fifth one that I'm a man and not a woman. She was a bit shocked, but said it didn't bother her in the least. We've put the bit in the nose for a couple more so I assume she is sincere. LOL
I still remember folks who said a man could not write a successful romance. Uh, maaybe they still think the same way. Oh well...
Pat Dale

Tory Richards said...

Hi Sandy,

The only reason I changed my name was because it gave me more freedom to write what I really wanted to write about. But in response to your question, I don't think you should change your name. As others have said, you already have books out in your name. Your readers will figure out quick enough which books are yours.


Stacey Joy Netzel said...

I agree, keep your name. Hard enough these days without starting over, Sandy. :) Looking forward to the new book.

Sandy said...

Thank you, Jadette. I don't intend to write anything other than romantic suspense other than the odd short story.

LOL Thanks, Celia. This business is confusing.

Hey, Pat, I would try that name if I decide to write YA, or straight contemporary. I like it though.

Thank you, Tory, I appreciate your comment.

Thank you, Stacey. If I change my name I would have to have a new website and a blog with that name. When I think of all that work, I get sick to my stomach. lol

Judy said...

Well, for an unpub's opinion, I'd agree with all the others. Stick with your name now and change it if you want to with a new genre. Sandra Kay is nice tho.

P McCrillis said...

When I began writing historical romances I aquired a penname because my real name, Polly McCrillis didn't suit. It has no romantic feel or sound to it and I wanted something more elegant. Isabel Mere came about by going through the alphabet in my mind and coming up with a first name for each letter. I wanted the last name to be soothing, something to do with water, whence came Mere. I use my real name for contemporary romances. It's fun to use the penname. It's like playing author dress-up!


Kari Thomas said...

I understand your dilema, Sandy. Still, like everyone mentioned youre known by this name and readers know the difference. Youve made a place as an author with that name. If you decided to write a different genre, maybe change then. Ive been debating getting a pseudo too for writing outside my paranormal romance range, but not sure yet. I think I'll watch for your decision and see how it goes! (grin) YOU be the guinea pig!

Either way, good luck and HAPPY WRITING DAYS!
HUGS, Kari Thomas,

Kelly Moran said...

I say go with what's comfortable. I know this sounds odd, and I have no reasoning for it, but I never cared for the initial in a name. I think the only thing to really consider is if you write historicals, to match your name accordingly.

great post.

I woke up Sunday a.m. to find my blog, my 500 plus followers, my 100plus author interviews, and my 200 plus reviews gone. Blogger gave no explanation, but I think the account was hacked. Change your password often!

I have reloaded the interviews and reviews, plus redesigned the blog. But if you could, please hit the "follow" button so I can reclaim the fellow bloggers I miss. I'm still following you, as my account remained--thank goodness!

Thank you!
Kelly Moran

Marianne Stephens said...

Congrats on your new release!
Pen name: I had my reasons for choosing to you two different ones. It's really a personal choice and does require extra work (two web sites, etc.)

Sandy said...

Judy, there is a Sandra Kay out there, and she's a published author. Thanks for your comment.

Thanks, Polly. I think I would change my name if I were to write in another genre.

LOL Thanks, Kari. I'll be the guinea pig.

Thanks, Kelly. I did hit the follow button. So sorry that happened to you with blogger. I've had my ups and downs with them, too.

Thanks, Marianne. It's the extra with the websites that may very well prevent me from changing my name. I'm not even caught up with my present website. lol