Apr 18, 2023·edited Apr 18, 2023Liked by Crissi Langwell

It depends on what you want to be known for and whether or not you intend to increase the heat for future books.

My two cents: if you move into a Mature Audience/erotica level you may consider a pen name as the one we discussed two years ago- KD.

Otherwise be you.

Those who want to read what you’ve already written will, and those who won’t won’t. You have plenty of room to grow in followers. Find a lane and “sweet spot” for the majority of your readers and books you love to write and deliver what you/they want.

You have a unique ability to take the heat as high as you want AND tell an awesome story around it. Not everyone is that skilled.

Step into the role you want and wear whatever name you want proudly.

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I love you. Thank you for always knowing what to say.

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Apr 18, 2023Liked by Crissi Langwell

Crissi, stop stressing you are a great writer!

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Welcome to my brain, lol! I always get this neurotic around book release time! I finally figured out my issue last night (though it doesn't fix anything). When I'm producing the book, like writing and editing and all that goes with it, I feel confident in the journey. But as soon as I put any control into the readers' hands, like offering it for sale and hoping for page views, I go a little crazy because I AM NO LONGER IN CONTROL. Lol.

Too much fun. 🙃

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I understand the quandry. But I think you should just own it. Be who you are, write what you want to write. The dip in subscribers may be replaced by different people, and I've think the bigger question is who do you want to reach? And why? If it's just about breaking into a bigger market for the sake of sales, your motivation for going steamy may not be the same motivation that you had for other books. And maybe you need to honestly evaluate the why.

However, if you wrote it steamy first and then decided afterward it's still a great romance with characters being very true to life and not pie in the sky idealistic, and maybe you can just be real and not censor yourself into a corner you've outgrown, and that maybe leaving those parts in will bring the bigger more important parts of the story to people who might not otherwise pick it up, and you want the heart of the story to reach further, that's a completely different thing.

I think sex is a complicated issue in real romance. People make choices they regret and choices they don't regret and results are sometimes hard to deal with, no matter what the motivations were in the moment or how much you've grown as a person since then. Romantic love is complicated, often much more complicated than sex without love. Real love affects sex differently. Which makes the complications exponential.

So... do you really want to create an alter ego that requires management just to not offend people who aren't open to the reality of sex and romance being complicated like that? Do those people want simplistic idealistic stories that don't make them think about the reality of sex and romance?

You wrote it. You're growing as a writer. So own it. Unashamedly. If you know your motivation is without shame, neither should your name carry any.

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I definitely appreciate your dilemma. It's a hard one and I had to think about it for a minute or so before recommending that you create a nom de plume. In this day and age when the word "fuck," and worse, is freely bandied about in even once staid publications like the NYTimes and The Atlantic, it's hard to believe that people would unsubscribe just because you described your novel as "steamy." However, if it's going to cost you readership and sales, probably you have to bite the bullet and wear two hats.

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