The disadvantages of a Pseudonym


  1. At times using a pen name can be for the wrong reasons. Many book publishing agreements require authors to give the publisher a first look at their next book and not to publish anything competitive without their knowledge. Does using a pseudonym avoid these restrictions? It’s very dependent on your publisher and can get you into trouble.
  2. Tax fraud. You are required to register your pen name and any income earned from that does especially if you are working as a full time writer. Well, at least you can still claim tax rebates on other things.
  3. A rose by another name. Using another persons name is a great reason why NOT to do it. Wouldn’t you just love to kick start you career with a book by James Patterson? Well, think again. We all have to put in the time to get discovered.

03e8eb75515c7f615b8d91739c198e14.jpgEven if your reasons for using a pseudonym are innocent, there are still a few things to consider:

  1. Advances and Royalties can be a bitch under more than one name.
  2. Too much privacy in your pseudonym can make it hard for fans to really see you either at a book launch or tour.
  3. When you die, your pen name can be a can of worms to your heirs.
  4. Failing to register your pen name with the Copyright Office could shorten you copyright protection.



5 Comments Add yours

  1. Pearl Kirkby says:

    I had to chuckle when I read this, for I could add yet another ‘reason’ for using a pen name: sometimes the author’s name is longer than the title of the book s/he wrote!

    That’s me! Thanks for giving me the idea for my next post, for which I will definitely credit you!!

    And thanks for visiting “The Old Fossil Writes”, too!! 😀


    1. A. K. Cates says:

      Thanks-in fairness my name is way too long to put on the cover as well, though I like to pick one or two of the names and put them together randomly-good blog btw

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Pearl Kirkby says:

        So glad to know I’m not a country of 1!!! Thanks…I really enjoy yours, too😀

        Liked by 1 person

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