Has much changed in the last 7 years? Would I still hide my gender? Still use a pseudonym?
For Berti’s unique writing, the pseudonym stays. I am a teacher and that position is so volatile, so openly judged by the public, the content would get me fired in a heartbeat if some parent gets ahold of it. Should my private life have anything to do with my teaching? Nope. But it does. And that’s a whole other issue.
I think the safest route to go with for pseudonyms if you are a female is to use your initials. It’s on the reader if they assume a gender based on some letters and a surname. Know your audience, see what other authors are using, and choose appropriately. If you want to use a full name, select something gender-neutral. That’s on the readers if they’re going to be gender-biased. You’re not selling out, not hiding your identity. It’s taking one’s sex out of the equation. That’s my advice for now. I wish I could say embrace your female name. I mean, go for it if you want to. There are plenty of amazing and successful female authors who don’t use gender-neutral or masculine names. BUT my personal advice and experience for the best odds of readership and publication (again, genre does make a difference so this doesn’t apply to everyone), would be to play it safe. However, we live in changing times where that might not be true in the future. Hopefully, a not-so-distant future.
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