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Pseudonyms and querying

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Gabriella
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Pseudonyms and querying

Post by Gabriella » Tue October 26th, 2010, 3:48 pm

So I am going to begin the querying process soon and I was wondering about agents and what they think about pen names. Should I sign my query as my pen name (which is my first name, with a false last name as I share my real last name with an ex president) or my real name? Are pen names brought up later after I have actually been offered representation or what?

Sorry if this question doesn't make much sense...
Thanks for the help. :)

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boswellbaxter
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Post by boswellbaxter » Tue October 26th, 2010, 4:56 pm

I would think that you would query with your real name, since that is what you would be signing any contracts with. If you're offered representation, you can then discuss pen names.
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Julianne Douglas
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Post by Julianne Douglas » Tue October 26th, 2010, 5:02 pm

I queried with my real name, then once I accepted representation, discussed pseudonyms with my agent. She sends the book out under my pseudonym. I don't know what happens when you sign a contract--I would think you'd have to sign papers with your legal name.

I think some people sign their queries as "Jane Doe, writing as Marlene Thomas."
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N. Gemini Sasson
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Post by N. Gemini Sasson » Tue October 26th, 2010, 6:04 pm

I also queried with my real name. When asked to send a partial or full, the title page had my pen name on it. If you become agented, as Julianne said, the book is then submitted to editors under the pen name.

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Miss Moppet
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Post by Miss Moppet » Tue October 26th, 2010, 7:35 pm

[quote=""boswellbaxter""]I would think that you would query with your real name, since that is what you would be signing any contracts with. If you're offered representation, you can then discuss pen names.[/quote]

Might the publisher want to put their oar in about the name you write under? I've always heard that J.K. Rowling would have been credited as Joanne Rowling, but the publisher felt an author who wasn't obviously female would have a wider appeal. She didn't have a middle name and J. Rowling sounded a bit abrupt, so she added the K to honour her grandmother Kathleen.

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MLE (Emily Cotton)
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Post by MLE (Emily Cotton) » Tue October 26th, 2010, 8:12 pm

At the query stage, all an agent cares about is whether you have enough talent to be viable in the market. You can query under any name you want, as long as the agent has your contact information.

If you are approached for representation, that's when you discuss pseudonyms with a prospective agent.

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Gabriella
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Post by Gabriella » Tue October 26th, 2010, 9:02 pm

Thank you all so much!! :)
So many lovely answers, I cant wait to start querying...

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Miss Moppet
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Post by Miss Moppet » Tue October 26th, 2010, 9:07 pm

[quote=""Gabriella""]Thank you all so much!! :)
So many lovely answers, I cant wait to start querying...[/quote]

Wishing you the best of luck, Gabriella. :)

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