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Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Why I Changed My Name

Why did I change the name of my blog?  Not to mention I’ve changed my Twitter name from @LawyerMommy to @SusanDiMickele.  Is Lawyer Mommy dead?  Done?  Looking for a new identity?

It’s a good question.  And some of you have asked. 

As you may know, I’m pretty new in this writing business.  I’m a first-time author, and I’ve been blogging for less than two years.  So I try to pay attention to the experts in the business, like my agent Rachelle Gardner and social media guru Kristen Lamb, who advise us authors to use our published NAME when we write.  (For example, check out Kristen’s post this week on Jane Friedman’s blog.)

But just because I’m told to do something doesn’t mean I’m going to do it.  So I’ve thought about this “branding issue” for myself and I’ve concluded that it makes sense to use my full name as a writer for two main reasons:  1)  My name isn’t going to change; and 2) My name is who I am.

My Name Isn’t Going to Change

I’ve been married for almost 20 years.  I took my husband’s name shortly before law school and never looked back.  A couple of years ago, I thought about running for political office and the powers that be told me my Maiden name, Moore, would be more “ballot friendly.”  My husband agreed (plus, being a private person, he didn’t want his name smeared in a campaign).

“Suz, you really should have kept your maiden name.”

Gee honey, it’s a little late for that, don’t you think!

The fact of the matter is, I’m not changing my name.  I’m Susan DiMickele (pronounced “De-Michael”).  Period.

It sounds terribly simple, but it’s true.  Lots of things in life change – our careers, relationships, goals – but our names generally stick with us.

Plus, I’m terribly indecisive.  Case in point.  In less than two years, I’ve changed the name of my blog two times.  (Sorry, I’m not a branding genius. Remember I said I was new at this?)

My Name Is Who I Am

My name is no secret.  I’m easy to find.  I have a public profile as a lawyer and a public profile as an author.  Same name.  Same person.  (Not to mention I’ve already published Chasing Superwoman under Susan DiMickele.) 

If I was really clever, I would have published under my Maiden name (or under a trendy pen name), but I’m not that smart.  I tend to let it all hang out there.  Like it or not.  It’s me.  My name is who I am.

And I thank God some things in life don’t change!

Have you ever wrestled with the use of your name for a creative or artistic endeavor?


Wendy Paine Miller said...

This makes perfect sense to me.

And I'm glad you are staying you!
~ Wendy

Stacy said...

It took me almost a year before I even put my first name on my blog. But I wasn't taking it very seriously then. Plus I'm also a very private person.

Hope your guy had a good birthday yesterday!

Anonymous said...

This is a hard concept because most writers, like myself, are introverted and very private. It's difficult to put your name, the very essence of you out there. Great post!

Amber - Binkertation said...

Makes sense to me - glad you are putting yourself out there as you go forth into your writing career!


Charming's Mama said...

I wonder about letting people know my name. Mostly I blog for me, to remember. I have no writerly aspirations. But do understand the need for others to build a platform.

Heather Sunseri said...

I'm a CPA, and I often wondered if people would get confused when they came across my name as a writer, but then I decided, "I don't care." Like you said... This is me. Like it or not. I'm all of these crazy lives rolled up into one. From soccer mom, to business woman, to writer, to one messed up, distracted Jesus lover - I'm all that. I like the changes, Susan. But I still like lawyer mommy, too.

Heidiopia said...

Indeed! Just went through this when I was launching my new decor website... decided to go with my name, since it's simple, tried, and true. :)

robyn L. said...

I'm more on the private side, so although I use my first name on my blog, I only use my last initial, not my full last name.

Tessa said...

Hi Susan,

I was awarded the Liebster Blog Award this past weekend for up and coming blogs. As an aspiring author, I chose YOUR BLOG for an up and coming blog, too!

Stop by to check out about the award, and to pass along the honor.