Thursday, January 17, 2008

Who is Julia Amante?

Well, I finally completed that outline. Yesterday. See how slow I am? I could have easily written 100 pages in the time it took me to hammer out an outline. But it's done.

Now, I'm moving on to other things that need my attention. Namely, my new name. When I started writing, I never gave any thought to using a pseudonym. So when it came up the first time, I had fun with it, and spend a lot of time going over names in my family and looking up the meanings of the the names in baby books. It was an enjoyable process and in the end I liked Lara Rios. The name is easy to say. It's short and quick to sign. I figured I'd live with it forever and after about three years I even responded to it when people called me by that name.

This time around, having to choose another pseudonym, it's not as easy. Maybe me mindset is different. Well, no maybe about it. It's a pain. No only having to produce websites, business cards, etc. for the new name, but feeling like you own the name takes a while. I wasn't kidding that it took me about three years to get used to Lara. I would go through a momentary stall when people called me by my author name until my mind said, "hey, that's you."

So, now I sit here and wonder who is Julia Amante? She's not me yet. The name hasn't sat on the cover of a book yet. I've never signed it. She has a small place on my website where the name flashes from Lara Rios to Julia Amante in a schizophrenic sort of way, slowly changing from one to the other. So now I have to decide if I'd like a brand new website for this pseudonym or if I want to truely combine the two author identities into one site.

Lara Rios will continue to represent the romance, chick-lit books, and Julia Amante will write women's fiction. Is there a huge difference between these genres? Yes and no. Women's fiction doesn't have to have a happy ending, and it focuses more on women's issues concerning family and friends. Romance and chick-lit focus on mostly one character (maybe two if the hero has his own goal and arc) and certain period in her life. So, I tend to look at women's fiction as life after the romance type of books. After the hero and heroine have fallen in love, gotten married and lived with each other for a number of years, and they've dealt with problems and real issues of family, jobs, children, etc. Where are they now? I don't see a huge disticition between romance and women's fiction. For that reason, I think what I'll probably do with my site is find a way to combine the two pseudonyms. Maybe I'll surf other author sites and see who other authors have handled this dilemma. Any suggestions?