This website use cookies and similar technologies to improve the site and to provide customised content and advertising. By using this site, you agree to this use. To learn more, including how to change your cookie settings, please view our Cookie Policy
Pocketmags Digital Magazines
Pocketmags Digital Magazines
   You are currently viewing the Canada version of the site.
Would you like to switch to your local site?
Digital Subscriptions > Writing Magazine > January 2016 > The business of writing: New year, new you, new pseudonym

The business of writing: New year, new you, new pseudonym

Is there a business case for using a pen name? Simon Whaley chats to three writers about the pros and cons of a split writing personality.

My name is Simon Whaley, and that’s the name I write under. Although there was that time when I entered the National Association of Writers’ Groups’ minitale competition and I had to use a pseudonym (entries had to be judged anonymously). So, for a couple of hours, I became Milo Swahney. I used an anagram of my real name on that occasion because when I entered the competition the previous year I’d used my porn-star name. Suffice to say that was memorable for the wrong reasons, and I had to come up with something different.

One of the most frequently asked questions new writing students put to me is whether they should use a pseudonym. It’s as though getting the right author name is more important than writing something in the first place. Many get hung up on the myths and mysteries of why certain writers chose to write under specific names. Did JK Rowling use initials to hide her gender? Did JK Rowling write her Cormorant Strike novels under the name of Robert Galbraith to separate them from her Harry Potter novels? There are many reasons why writers use pseudonyms, but the best reasons are when there’s a clear business case for doing so.

Purchase options below
Find the complete article and many more in this issue of Writing Magazine - January 2016
If you own the issue, Login to read the full article now.
Single Issue - January 2016
Or 699 points
Annual Digital Subscription
Only $ 4.58 per issue
Or 5499 points
6 Month Digital Subscription
Only $ 5.00 per issue
Or 2999 points
Monthly Digital Subscription
Only $ 5.49 per issue
Or 549 points

View Issues

About Writing Magazine

Easy ebooks – format and publish your ebook step by step RoMANce – why you need strong male characters 6 grammar rules you need to break Writing resolutions you'll stick to in 2016 Star interview with Matt Haig, author of The Humans and Reasons to Stay Alive WIN: A four-day Iceland Writers' Retreat worth £1,500 £47,350 in writing prizes News you can use: • 19 competitions to enter • 50 opportunities to get published PLUS! NEW Made for Mobile edition now available - it has never been easier to read Writing Magazine on the go!

Other Articles in this Issue