In which it’s Kelly’s turn

For the month of December–with bonus posts on November 30 and January 1!–I am delighted to welcome a wonderful assortment of guest bloggers to take over the helm. Please enjoy their generous contributions to the blog this month. My own bloggery will resume January 2. I wish you and yours happiness and health this holiday season. Please note: comments are disabled until my return.


Kelly Maher is a stealth author of very hot romance and erotica. Her
next release is “Closing the Deal”, a short story in the Best Erotic
Romance 2014 anthology edited by Kristina Wright. Kelly can be found
online at and on Twitter as @kmmaher.

Multiple identities

Christmas Eve. At the time I’m writing this, I’m not sure exactly
where I’ll be when it posts as I have yet to decide if I’m driving
home for Christmas or not. Living so far from where I grew up means I
live two different lives. There’s the life I live when I’m at home in
Chicago, and the life I live when I’m at home in DC. Both places are
home to me, but in many ways I’m a very different person in each city.

This leads into my topic for the day: multiple identities. You may
have noticed when Deanna first posted the schedule, someone not named
Kelly was the guest. The originally named guest was alter ego. If
Deanna had included alter ego’s last name instead of just her first,
I’d be posting now as alter ego. Why? Because I do my best to keep my
identities separate. I’m not ashamed of what I write, and many people
know I write erotic fiction and very hot romance. But many of these
people also could not tell you this is my writing name. I use a
pseudonym because I have two sisters-in-law. Who share alter ego’s
name. Who work in schools. Due to issues in previous generations which
resulted from the mixing up of same-named family members, I like to
keep my fiction separate from my reality. I also work for a fairly
conservative institution. While my interest in erotic fiction is
well-known among some higher ups, they don’t know Kelly’s identity and
I’d rather not put it in their faces. All of these are very good
reasons for keeping my identities separate.

However, this situation is far from ideal. Alter ego is way better
known in the romance community than Kelly. I can’t make use of alter
ego’s social network to promote my books and stories except in a
subversive way. I confuse my friends who know me primarily as alter
ego when I’m in Kelly mode. And vice versa. Pretty much everyone who
knows me as both Kelly and alter ego aren’t sure which name to call me
by. And, frankly, talking about myself in the third person sounds so
freaking pretentious!

In the future, this isn’t going to be any easier. Kelly is known for
erotic and very hot romance. The last two novels I wrote aren’t really
romance–one definitely isn’t, and there’s no sex at all in either of
them. I’ve got another novel in the works which is a straight up
mystery. If any of these get published, I’ll most likely need to do it
under another pseudonym. And that name won’t be my third name. I
already have an alter alter ego which I use for some experimental
self-publishing efforts. I’m keeping that name on the down low as well
because I don’t want failures attached to those experiments (and
experiments very often fail despite best efforts), to negatively
impact Kelly. If alter alter ego does do well, then that’s another
story as to keeping it separate 😀

The moral of my story is to do your best to stick to one name if you
can. I have a number of friends who do use a pseudonym, but are only
known by that name within the romance/publishing community. If you do
have to use more than one name, make sure your new names are ones you
like and will answer to 🙂

Merry Christmas to those who celebrate!