This is the first time since having this spot that I've been completely unprepared with a topic to share. I knew the date was coming up and I planned to have my post ready and waiting to go at least a day before.
I'm chalking it up to summer. I know...I know. What's a season got to do with me getting my blog post done?
Well, for me summertime means a million more distractions with my kiddos completely underfoot, in my hair with their little voices ringing in my ears every other minute. I love them so, but seriously, my writing count has gone way down in the last two weeks and it's depressing.
I spend my days coming up with creative games, crafts, STUFF, for my children to do and by the end of the day I've got nothing creative left.
I'm going to find my writing groove. I will...maybe next week.
I read a fellow TEB author's email revealing her use of several pen names and thought I'd talk about that topic. (Thanks for the post idea!)
Nichelle Gregory is a pen name. It's actually my middle name and my husband's first name put together. Deciding to use a pen name for me was a necessity. I wanted the freedom to write what I wanted to write without fear of judgment. I felt I needed it as a shield...an outer perimeter, a boundary no one can cross unless I allow them to.
Maybe that makes me a coward.
I should just face the world or the people within my world and say, "Hey, I write erotic romance. Some of them are on the sweeter side, but I've got some that are well...out there and yes, they're all filled with sex scenes. But, hey, I'm still me."
But, I know they wouldn't still see me as me. And maybe that would be a good thing, because I'm not at all who they think I am. I've got hot, naughty, wild stories to tell and by golly, I'm gonna tell 'em!
I'm just not willing to go on full disclosure about that fact with EVERYBODY.
Why should I?
What I write, who reads it...is nobody's damned business.
Yeah, so why do I care then? Why am I using a pen name?
Honestly, I'm not sure why I should care. Most of the folks who would stand in judgement of what I write haven't really talked to me in years. They're not really 'friends,' but rather people in my orbit who know me, know my family...you understand –don't you?
It's weird because having a pen name is like having a dual personality, an alter ego and the bottom-line is...the name is an extension of me. I am Nichelle Gregory. The name is as authentic to me as my real name. Everything that I write or say using that pen name is who I am and I know there are many in my world that'd have something to say about that.
So, I wonder if my pen name is simply a mask for me. A mask I use to be free, to say and write what I want happily with no fear.
I wonder if readers find it harder to connect to an avatar as opposed to a real face. My sister designed my author avatar for me and I was hopeful the silhouette would connect with readers, but I often wonder if readers are more readily drawn to authors who use real pictures...real names for that matter.
It doesn't seem fair. Readers can cloak their identities, purchase and enjoy our work in complete anonymity. I've gotten emails from readers who I'm quite sure are using nicknames or blog-o-sphere names themselves.
Anonymity within creativity is sometimes necessary for the author to thrive.