Author Topic: How important is a separate pen name for a different genre?  (Read 173 times)

sstreet

How important is a separate pen name for a different genre?
« on: January 19, 2019, 03:12:23 AM »
How important is this? Or is it at all? Is there a crossover?
I write young adult.
I want to write Christian romance.
I want to write college/new adult.
I realize that my young adult books might not appeal to a Christian romance audience because they have some swearing and are a little more edgy for romance, so a different name? And if I do use a different name, do authors put it out there that they are actually three different pen names? I have a following, I guess I'm just terrified of branching out and losing what I've got, but I have other stuff I want to do and I'm easily bored with the same genre all the time. Any ideas?

Thanks!
 

munboy

Re: How important is a separate pen name for a different genre?
« Reply #1 on: January 19, 2019, 04:05:58 AM »
Maybe it's the narcissist in me, but I want to be recognized for all my work.  :icon_rofl:

But, then again, the stuff I write attracts similar readers (fantasy, sci-fi, action, thriller). If I decided to write a sweet romance (or the other side of that, an erotica), I would probably do so under a pen name because the crossover audience is very thin because the extreme differences in genre. The same goes for you, I think. I think you're fine writing YA and NA under one name, but a Christian romance might turn your YA/NA readers away (there will be some crossover, but how much?) and sometimes it's hard to get them to come back once they've moved on.

It's definitely something to consider.
 

PJ Post

Re: How important is a separate pen name for a different genre?
« Reply #2 on: January 19, 2019, 05:55:23 AM »
If we graph reader demographic preferences, where the left end is a commodity market and the other is uber-lit fic, specific brands (author names) increase in releative importance as we move to the left. A commodity market depends on maximum fungibility, therefore you don't want to introduce any confusion (a reason to click away) into the reader's mind about your brand by publishing in different genres. In the commodity market, the book and the author are one and the same in the minds of customers.

As your brand moves to the right, the writer rises above genre or specific books, becoming something more akin to a celebrity brand, which allows them to publish in a variety of genres or other non-fiction venues, such as journalism or essays.

So it depends.  grint
 

Writer

Re: How important is a separate pen name for a different genre?
« Reply #3 on: January 19, 2019, 06:48:34 AM »
I would put the Christian romance under a separate pen name from everything else you write that isn't no heat, no swearing. It's a different audience. If the NA is sexy, I would also separate that from the YA (assuming your YA is aimed at kids, rather than readers who are actually adults).

I don't find it hard to maintain multiple pen names, but what usually happens it that one pen name becomes more popular than the others, so you gradually neglect the others to focus on the one that sells best. Eventually, the least popular ones just sort of drop away, which isn't necessarily a bad thing, depending on how you feel about them.
 

veinglory

Re: How important is a separate pen name for a different genre?
« Reply #4 on: January 19, 2019, 07:24:35 AM »
It's as important as it is necessary.  Some readerships much don't cross over and tend to get very angry when they autobuy a squick.  Christian is one possible example here many readers not only want to buy a certain story but buy to from an author they make certain assumptions about. 
ZOMBIE lost & found https://my.w.tt/39V7zgONRU
 

angelapepper

Re: How important is a separate pen name for a different genre?
« Reply #5 on: January 19, 2019, 07:58:03 AM »
I'm on pen name #I-lost-track, and I'm really glad I don't have my sexy billionaire titles floating around under my current names. Not that there's anything wrong with sexy billionaires, it's just... good publishing hygiene to keep things separated.
 

Lorri Moulton [Lavender Lass Books]

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Re: How important is a separate pen name for a different genre?
« Reply #6 on: January 19, 2019, 08:30:46 AM »
My clean/sweet romance books go great with my historical non-fiction and even one contemporary romance series with a little magic.  There's no swearing or steamy romance at all in these books.

I have three book under a new pen name that are more PG/PG-13 and I created the pen name mainly due to the differences in how I promote on social media.  I love fantasy and sci-fi, which doesn't really fit as well with my first group of stories and I like paranormal...so the (slightly) steamier books are now under their own name. 

However, I publish them all under Lavender Lass Books and I have them all on my main website.  I created a separate website and social media accounts for "Jazzmyn" but everyone knows it's me because I say so in the accounts.  It just makes it easier for readers to know what to expect under each author name.

Have fun with whatever you decide!   :catrun
   
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