A Rose by Any Other Name

Pseudonyms are hard.

A year ago I posted that I had chosen a Pen-name for myself, Lia Booke. I had difficulty choosing it, but I finally was forced to in order to submit a story with that name. I’ve since submitted a few other things with it, and have generally worn it about the internet for a whole year. Unfortunately, I’ve found that the name did not wear well. So, rather than just bite my tongue and deal with it I’ve decided to change it. Far better to change it now than to wait until I absolutely can’t stand it but have one or more books published under it.

After some serious consideration, I’ve settled on Lia Wolff. I still like the Lia part, and am reasonably well-known by that name now. Naturally I will be changing the information on my blog accordingly.

Why is a Pen-name so important? you may ask. Well, names in general are important. They tell others who we are, and help to separate us from each other. Without names of one sort or another, we’d be walking around calling people “Hey you, not you, the other you, no not you either, you in the red shirt.” Which would be time consuming and confusing. Names are rather central to our identity in a lot of ways.

Pen-names are the same. They are central to our writing identity, and hence we have to be comfortable with them. Some authors want each genre they write to match up with a different name, others simply want to separate their daily lives from their books for whatever reason. Regardless, the name chosen needs to be appropriate to the identity chosen by the author. It isn’t always easy to know if you’ve chosen right immediately. It  took wearing mine for a year to realize that it wasn’t the right name. I am much more confident in the new Wolff name than I was the original, but I’ll still watch it for a while. If I find myself uncomfortable with it, I may have to think of something else.

Speaking of names, I present: Holly Noel Von Wolff, Dragon Slayer!

Because I can.

Currently Reading: By the Book by Scarlett Parrish



  1. January 17, 2011 at 11:52 am

    I like your new name! 🙂 I’ll be sure to update my blog.

    • Lia said,

      January 18, 2011 at 12:47 am

      Thanks on both counts! It was something I dithered over for a while, because I feel a bit silly going “Oops, just kidding, call me this now” but I figure the new year is a good time for a change. ^_^

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