aprilhenry (aprilhenry) wrote,

Would an author by another name smell even sweeter?

A fascinating article in the Boston Globe says: "After publishing several books under his real name and a few under pen names known to his publishers, the man who is Paul Garrison went undercover. He became the swashbuckling mariner who spends as much time as he can at sea -- except when managing business interests from his Hong Kong base. He published five novels of adventure on the high seas with HarperCollins, landed lucrative movie deals (no movies have been made yet), and enjoyed healthy sales in Europe. Yet, until yesterday, not even HarperCollins knew the truth."

It goes on to say that he changed names so that he could be fresh, a new author without a track record, and thus without any record in the computers of Barnes and Noble or Bookscan.

While I love computers, I do worry about the increasing tyranny of the numbers. Authors aren't producing widgets, they are writing stories, no two of which are alike. And some are better than others. And some don't get the recognition or the sales they deserve. It feels like switching is going to happen more frequently. I know it has in mysteries and thrillers, although I don't personally know of anyone whose editors didn't know. "Richard Hawke" is really Tim Cockey. "Diana Diamond" is William P Kennedy. A friend is switching genders next year, at least in print.

After reading this article, I wonder if Justin's/Paul's editors are going to be pissed that they found out through a newspaper article.

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Tags: diana diamond, paul garrison, richard hawke, tim cockey
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