What's In A Pen Name? Choosing The 'Write' Pen Name For Your Writing

To pen name, or not to pen name? That is a decision every writer must make based on their marketing style and venue choice. Obviously you wouldn't use a 'handle' when writing the Great American Novel, so for all intents and purposes here, we're talking about an online presence.

When I chose alwritetea as my pen name, I wanted something that was clever, not too simple, yet easy to remember. Surprisingly few have commented on my pen name, so I take that as either; 1. No one gets it (alwritetea = think 'alrighty') combining my love of writing and for tea all in one shot. Or 2. I haven't produced enough content to warrant a response on something as trivial as the name I chose to write under. I realize a pen name is a very personal choice, and something you should give serious thought to.

Remember if you're planning on building a considerable online presence; you'll not only want to keep the same name for all platforms, you'll also want to make it easy on yourself when submitting profiles as it can be quite tedious and time consuming. Decide on a name that's on the shorter side, making it easy to type in on several sites, and easy for others to read and input without difficulty. Refrain from using names with offensive or immature connotations. Think ahead and ask yourself, 'will this embarrass me a few years from now'?

Don't forget, your pen name is an extension of yourself, a representation of who you are and the image you want to project. Project a positive image into the minds of your readers to encourage reader loyalty and create a following. People will only take you as seriously as your name and work suggest.

Happy writing!