Monday, October 1, 2012

Pennames and Websites

Lately I’ve been wondering if I should be using a penname to publish my books. Perhaps I could go with J. S. Flynn, J. F. Shon, or maybe even some variation of initials-last name that just sounds cool. Because there’s a trend among Authors where the initials don’t match their name – J. K. Rowling, E. L. James, V. C. Andrews. Rowling doesn’t have a K in her real name. James’ last name isn’t even James. Andrews’ first name, not the middle, begins with the C.

I could have the name I’ve always wanted! Or at least something more obscure. Call me J. X. Flynn. People will ask ‘ooh, what does the X stand for?’ I suppose there’s something to be said for being mysterious right from the start. That start being the front cover in this case. Especially if I have a hint of mystery in my books it would be a nice compliment.

And that’s a thought I haven’t completely discounted as I wrap up edits on my latest MS. It’s a Romantic Suspense novel that I’m really trying to push to release as an eBook within the next handful of weeks. How does this sound?

Young Adult fiction Author, Shaw McLeary, returns from Whole Foods to discover her husband, Danny, is gone. So is their stash of cash, his clothes, passport, and her wedding rings. He took off in a hurry and left her behind. While trying to piece it all together Shaw witnesses a cop’s murder in her home. Determined not to become the next victim, she flees. She fears dirty cops are involved in Danny’s disappearance. There's only one person she can trust to help her - JJ Anderson, Private Investigator. Also, her ex-fiancé.

A retired Phoenix cop turned PI, Shaw hopes JJ will be inclined to take her case. Despite his resentment for how their relationship ended, he agrees to help her track down leads on Danny. They chase the clues from Phoenix to Manhattan to upstate New York. In such close quarters Shaw finds it difficult to maintain a professional distance from her first real love. Then what happens if she finds Danny? Can she still love a man who abandoned her or is she too drawn to fixing her past mistake to let go of JJ again?

“Catchy Title” is the fast-paced Romantic Suspense novella by J. F. Shon slated for release in the fall of 2012.

J. F. Shon, Romantic Suspense Author (who also writes characters with only initials as their first and middle names, you’ll notice). It sounds pretty cool.

But then what would I do about this…

Yes friends I finally have an Author website! Yippie! Woo hoo! Hooray! And all those other exclamations professing how ecstatic I am to not have to worry about this anymore. Oh but I didn’t do it myself. Well, I designed the graphic part myself & got it looking all pretty but the domain connection – the part I had no idea how to make work - was handled by the wonderful and talented Judi FitzPatrick. Yea Mom!

Here’s a little bit about how it all came together…

Once upon a time, in a mystical land known as Phoenix, there lived an Indie Author who had nary a clue what a DNS Server was. She longed for the day when the www that held her name could be released; set free unto the world. Many frogs appeared that claimed they would help her with her conundrum but when she told them she was just a poor peasant girl they all hopped away, laughing as they went. Little Miss Indie thought she might never find anyone to help her create her website. Until one day when her mother came to visit and little Miss Indie explained her strife. Suddenly the room filled with smoke and mom Indie waved her magic mouse until, voila! In an instant a website was born! And they all lived happily ever after. The End. (As posted on Goodreads forums the other day)

So what do you think of the site? Obviously it will be edited or overhauled here and there but I think everything important is included for now. Because it’s based on a Blogger template I’m also well versed in how to make edits/changes and add stuff to make it snazzy. The one drawback is that Blogger doesn’t allow the tabbed pages to be opened in a new window like they do with links. If that’s the only drawback then how can I complain right?

Come on over! Subscribe to updates! Tell your friends! All that happy crap!

I know I warned everyone that all I’d be blogging about was my writing life. That warning came weeks ago and nothing having to do with my writing seemed to show up since. Guess you’re getting it all now.

Anyway, I’d be super grateful if you could spread the word about my site as well as the upcoming novella and let me know what you think!


Almost Precious said...

Wow, your new website looks super. Love the promo blurb about your upcoming new book. Sounds like a great mystery, one that will be hard to put down. :)

Jenn I would love to purchase your book "Ripple the Twine" and I really hope to, some day (soon I hope). John and I are still fighting with BofA about trying to refi our home mortgage and we are getting a little desperate. The economy has kicked our IRA's and saving all to hell. John said he hopes we'll pass away before our money runs out because the last thing he wants to do when he's in his 80's is work as a bag boy in our local supermarket. As far as making any money from my etsy shop . . . well that is one big laugh. I'm lucky if I get a view or two a day and the last item I sold was Nov. 23, 2011 - jewelry supplies; a pair of stud earring posts for $1.50 (think I made about a ten cent profit on that deal. LOL
Oh well, crying about it ain't gonna make it any better. :D

lettersfromlaunna said...

The book sounds interesting Jenn;). I finished reading your novel, a friend of mine is borrowing the book now. Once I have passed it around, I am going to donate it to our library:)

The website looks great, I wish I was more techy... I always get lost on these things;)

Anonymous said...

One of my friends has a great pen name - A.M. Henry. I think she used her first and middle initial and then her mother's maiden name or something. And I'm guessing her blogger name is her actual middle name, but she's never confirmed that. You can check out her site if you're so inclined:

A pen name would definitely fit your suspense novel, but it sounds like the window may have closed on that, what with your first novel and your brand new website displaying your full name and all. Sit looks great, btw. Can't wait to see some content up there - lord only knows how you'll come up with enough for three websites/blogs, Facebook/Twitter and, oh yeah, the stories that you're doing all this self-promotion for!

Rosebud Collection said...

Wow, you are moving so fast, I can't keep the web site..and like the sounds of the book. That would be something I would enjoy. I am a lousy reader, but mystery keeps me interested.
Have been trying to take a free course on Web making. So far, I have not done a thing. So much going on..but I hope in the winter it will keep my mind going.
Take care and so proud of you. Sending love and positive thoughts for a successful are on your way..Carolyn

Jenn Flynn-Shon said...

Thanks so much for checking it out Anna! I am working like a fiend on this one. Not sure what people are talking about with that whole "Sophomore Slump" thing, I think my work is getting a little bit faster and better with each piece I put together. Maybe its just the doing it everyday part. Whether I want to on not its still a job. If I want a paycheck I have to actually show up right? :-)

Please don't sweat it for an instant on picking up RtT! Whenever if ever...the fact that you've been so supportive and such a great sounding board/friend all this time is something I appreciate so much. But on another note...I know exactly what you mean on the economy - 1 foreclosure and 1 bankruptcy over here! I'm keeping fingers crossed you get it all settled soon.

Etsy...just when I give up someone literally comes over and cleans out 1 of everything in my shop. Yes less income than selling 1 novel but hell I'll take it (since its my first sale since May lol)

Jenn Flynn-Shon said...

Ah Launna I'm so excited you finished reading the book! You'll have to let me know what you thought about it :-) I've been bad about bloggyland lately - reading & writing! If you posted I missed it sadly, and sorry. Life / Writing life took over my own lol

Hope your friend enjoys it and thanks SO MUCH for passing on the book to the library. That is incredibly generous of you!

Jenn Flynn-Shon said...

Freaking great name! Maybe this is why I opted not to use one - you really need a catchy one. Double initials were always my ideal when I was a kid. I'm sort of writing about this today in a roundabout kind of way so I won't tell all but when I was young, probably 11, I kind of came up with one but just never went with it and now I can't. I'll check the site when I get a chance thanks for sharing!

I figure Writing is .001% actually writing and the rest marketing so I have no choice but to force as much shameless self promotion as possible hence all the sites lol. I prob won't update the website too often, just as new projects are completed, but at least its there now. This blog is still my first love though next to the writing part :-)

lettersfromlaunna said...

I loved your book Ripple The Twine of course, I am looking forward to your next book. I plan to do a blog about your book, hopefully this month... I have either been incredibly enlightened on what I need to write or I haven't felt like writing anything. I will do a post on your book though! You are welcome, I am excited to give it to the library when I am done, I want to help you get your book around:)