I attended a writer’s conference last year during which presenters lit a fire under unpublished authors to get their social media ducks in a row before sending out query letters. Apparently, the first thing many agents and editors do is Google you. If you have no web presence you won’t be as “interesting” to them.
That was the message. I took it to heart. Found a wonderful digital artist who specializes in website and book cover design. First things first, I needed a domain name which meant I had to commit to an author identity. I was writing Highland Romance and my last name, Rupp, sounded so…Germanic. My married name didn’t sound any better. I wanted to use a name I felt I had a right to use. I chose Jennifer Lynn. Lynn is my middle name. Sounded okay and sort of Euro-nonspecific.
That hurdle cleared, I purchased a domain name, published a website, created a Facebook page, and a Twitter account. Not easy for a digital dilettante like myself, but I did it. Spent twelve months attracting friends and contacts with the pen name Jennifer Lynn.
A year later, something wonderful happened. I got an agent. Yay, right?
It turns out I jumped the social media gun a little bit. My agent (I feel like a giddy newlywed using the words “my husband” for the first time) didn’t think Jennifer Lynn was a good choice. Another well-known author writes erotica under the name J. Lynn and I wouldn’t want to confuse readers.
Back to zero. I started my search for a new author identity. Do you have any idea how many authors out there use the first name Jennifer? When it’s not even their real first name? How very dare they? Nevertheless, with the approval of my agent, I found a new pen name. It’s a family name. It’s Cornish. It’s a mouthful. And I don’t know why, but I like it. Hope you do, too.
Friend me on Facebook: Jennifer Trethewey. My twitter account: @jltrethewey