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Old 02-10-2012, 05:00 PM   #1
ChuckMiceli
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What is a "Pen Name" on Smashwords

I am ready to upload my book to Smashwords but I am hesitent to push the “Publish” button because of conflicting statements regarding Apple distribution and Pen Names.

On the Apple distribution information sheet it says: "REGISTER: Sign up for a free Smashwords account, if you haven't already. Choose a "member name" that corresponds with the pen name or publisher name you will be using. Choose carefully, you cannot change it later."

It cautions that if you do not fufill all of the Apple requirements, Apple will not distribute your book.

Then in the FAQs it says:
Can I publish under a pen name but be paid to my real name?
Yes. Sign in, click Account, then click Edit Account Information. If you plan to use a pen name, be sure when you sign for your Smashwords account that you choose a "screen name" that matches your pen name, because the screen name becomes part of your permanent web address for your author page. For example, the author page for Smashwords' founder, Mark Coker, is http://www.smashwords.com/profile/view/mc ( <-- note how "mc" is his screen name).

Later in the FAQs it says:
"I've decided to change my Pen Name. How to I change it without de-listing my book at retailers?
It's easy to change your pen name without removing your books from distribution. Here are the three steps to follow (follow them in this exact order): 1. Create a new ebook cover image with your new name, then upload the new cover image at Dashboard: Settings. 2. Go to Account: Edit Account Information and change your name there. 3. Update the name in your manuscript then click to Dashboard: Upload new version to refresh it. If you follow the steps in this order, it will cause all the retailers to automatically update your information without interrupting sales of your book, and will preserve your sales rank and book reviews."

The question is, which is the real Pen Name? The membername (which cannot be changed as far as I can tell), the screen name (which can, I believe) or the Account name (I'm not sure of which one this is).

I wrote to Smashwords twice several days ago re. this question and have not received an answer. I'd appreciate help from anyone who has successfully distributed through Apple and has a name on the book that is different than the member name in Smashwords.

Then I can hit the "Publish" button in Smashwords.
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Old 02-10-2012, 05:28 PM   #2
Valmore Daniels
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Old 02-10-2012, 06:05 PM   #3
MickeyC
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Hi Chuck and welcome to MobileRead
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Old 02-11-2012, 08:05 AM   #4
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So I looked around Smashwords and could not find a good answer to your question. What I did find is that for my published books payee information and author information are completely separate entries that can be edited independently.


"Username" is only for your web url as far as I can tell.

If you go to

https://www.smashwords.com/account/edit

It appears that what you put in "Firstname" and "Lastname" there is the pen name and can be changed at any time.

I would wait to hear back from Smash though, because I can not be sure as I do not use a pen name.
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Old 02-13-2012, 05:40 AM   #5
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Geez, good thing I didn't read the fine print in Smashwords or I might have gotten equally confused. I publish under a pen name and get paid under my real name through PayPal. I access Smashwords through a username that is an email account. I have premium distribution and everything seems to work. Setting up the PayPal account ... now that was confusing.
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Old 02-13-2012, 03:25 PM   #6
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Yes you can publish under a Pen name and get paid under your real name, just make your account a Publisher account. You have the ability to make a number of pen names, with profiles and assign books to them.
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Old 02-14-2012, 09:37 PM   #7
Harper Kingsley
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Once you make your account into a publisher account, you can't go back. But you can publish under different pen names for different things.

I sign into Smashwords with my email address and get my money through Paypal. It's actually pretty simple and there's no reason to be scared. If you need any help, you should be able to just contact someone there and ask questions: @markcoker for Twitter, http://www.facebook.com/Smashwords for Facebook, and you can always email them directly.
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Old 02-17-2012, 12:07 PM   #8
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Thank you all for taking the time to address my concern. I have since established a new account on Smashwords consistent with Apple's distribution guidelines, just in case. One hazzard of any comprehensive web service is that, as it grows, internal contridictions are bound to be introduced, like the one I found. The real difficulty comes in when the human resources available to eliminate them, or to answer questions when they do occur, is insufficient. I have still not received a response from my e-mail to Smashwords, so I am grateful for the opportunity to query members on a site like this. I have a second issue that has surfaced but to keep things clear, I will introduce that as another thread. Once again, thanks for your input and help.
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