Authors, Thoughts

Name Tag Peek-a-boo

I’ve never been good with names. I’ve tried all the tricks that name experts tell you about, but until it clicks, I stumble. Some click easier than others, because maybe that person reminds me of a childhood friend with the same name or it’s such a quirky name that I love it to death and it gets burned deeply into my grey matter right away. Name + Visual = Posy getting it easier.

So, it came as no surprise that when I went to the Dreamspinner’s author’s workshop, I felt overwhelmed by all the new faces attached to names I knew. Some I knew because their names had been attached to their faces online for ages. Andrew GreyRick Reed, and J.P. Barnaby are three people I knew the second I saw them. Their face is their brand.

That's me! ;)
That’s me! 😉

As the days went on, I’d meet someone, smile, and peek at their name tag. We all did it. It was this socially acceptable thing. Peek! Sometimes I knew the name right away, but other times I’d need a few seconds—stupid brain. I even went online once or twice to put the living face with a book I’d read, and the second I did that, a light bulb went on.

Then I’d have that internal fangirl moment that I fought ever-so-hard to contain and not show on the outside. “OMG! I’m sitting next to…!”  That happened a lot!

But I felt guilty, until I realized that those pen names were attached to books those authors had written. What a wonderful thing, I realized. Isn’t that what we all want as writers, for readers to attach our names with our words? So I peeked and I cheated a few more times. Then I wished book covers could’ve been sitting right next to names or even the avatar people use most often.

Visuals are powerful. It makes me wonder what visual I want to use to really represent Posy. I’m not sure it will be my face, simply because of my job. But maybe. Maybe someday.

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2 thoughts on “Name Tag Peek-a-boo”

  1. I love how you have something visual to represent your pen name. I’ve been trying to choose one lately, because the academia career path requires my real name to not be connected to anything less than serious (science fiction! gasp!). I picked one quite a long time ago and made a Twitter/email with it, but I’ve had the inevitable “Is this what I really want to be called for the rest of my writing career?” panic.

    But I guess you just have to jump right in sometime, right? 🙂

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    1. It’s hard, isn’t it? The first thing I had published in an actual book outside of academia, I used P.J. Roberts as my name. I didn’t like it at all. I was worried that Posy was just far too girly, especially since I write M/M romance, but I’d been going by Posy since 2005. People say the name in public and I automatically turn to see who’s calling me, even if I’m in a place where no one knows me by that name. It fits, so I embraced it. (Oh, I smell another blog post coming here.) But I still think it’s a huge challenge. Not quite as hard as naming your own kid or pet, but close. 😉

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