Friday, March 13, 2009

A Rose by Any Other Name...

by Raelene Gorlinsky

Okay, this is a pet peeve of mine, and I've seen others (as in, editors and agents) comment on it.

Nowadays, when so much business communication is done via email, YOU MUST HAVE A PROFESSIONAL-SOUNDING EMAIL ADDRESS NAME.

Do you really think any business person is going to want to deal with someone whose email is GypsyFucker or CallMeStupid or TotallyHotTeen or WillWriteForFood? (Yes, I made those up so as not to embarrass real people - they are very similar to but actually tamer than ones I regularly see on manuscript submissions.)

Email addresses are free and you can have as many as you want. It's smart to have separate emails for personal and business. If you don't own your own websiteURL/email domain name, get yourself a business email address on gmail or yahoo. Make it tame and sensible. Simplest and best thing is to make it your NAME - either real or pen. That would greatly increase your chances of people remembering it. PattyPenname@gmail.com or RalphReal@yahoo.com - you sound like a sensible person I might consider dealing with.

Save CrazyCathouseLady for personal emails with your friends.

16 comments:

Jory Strong said...

I'd add to this by saying book reviewers should also consider what name they use when they review. Most of us love to post blurbs from reviews of our books and give credit not only to the reviewer but the review site. But when someone uses what they view as a "fun name" it has the potential to lessen the credibility of the review, and it forces authors into a decision as to whether or not to give credit to the reviewer along with the site.

spyscribbler said...

Oh man, I agree! I interviewed a student, once, and asked for an email from the mom. (I send out all reminders via email.)

She blushed as she wrote it down for me, and I had to politely pretend I didn't notice that it read slut68@earthlink.com.

It was so embarrassing!

ECPI Editors said...

Good point, Jory.

ANY professional or business online communication should have a decent and professional online or email name, regardless of who or what you are.

Raelene

Marianne Stephens said...

Stupid email addresses? Here's one my wayward son uses for his business: studcuts@....
Now, what the hell does he cut? Hair? Lawns? He calls himself a stud?
Would you hire him? He's like a brick wall and won't listen to professional advice from us.
BTW, he cuts lawns.
Raelene, you are SO right about using a professional email address if you want to be taken seriously.

Minx Malone said...

I am speechless that anyone would actually submit their work with such a crazy email address as their contact.

And the slut68 email from a student's mother is priceless! I bet she went home and signed up for a normal one right away. How embarrassing.

Anonymous said...

I'd wager that the writers using wacky e-addy's are doing so in an attempt to "stand out from the herd," and/or to seem charismatic in some way. They figure, in an inbox full of boring names, readthisyoustupidcow@buythisbook.net will get them noticed, and therefore read, sooner than the normals.

It's the electronic equivalent of snail mailing queries in purple envelopes with stickers on them, written on pink, scented paper with glitter inside.

Tracey H. Kitts said...

Wow. That's sad. My email address always has and always will be my name.

*snicker* I can just imagine seeing something like "boobookittyf**k@whatever.com" in my inbox. Needless to say, I wouldn't read it, but I'd have a good laugh.

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Elizabeth said...

I'm sorry, but I am seized by a compulsion to make up a character named William Rightford Faoud. Will is quite likeable when you get to know him, but clearly lacks social graces.

Often the "handle" we choose for our first internet presence is not appropriate everywhere. This used to be a problem. Now there are so many ways to get an email address that there's no excuse for it.

Then again, I'm someone who worries that a publisher might not take me seriously from a hotmail or gmail address. Clearly, I worry about this a bit TOO much.

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yanran said...
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