What’s in an Email Name?

Your account name can communicate professionalism — or not.

by Andy Scheer

When I was working as a literary agent I got a query from a woman named Tanya — at least I thought so.

But when I opened the email — surprise! The query was from her husband — a guy named Brad — piggybacking on his wife’s email account.

Fortunately, I already had an easy decision. Tanya’s husband’s book plowed much the same ground as one I already represented. To avoid a conflict of interest, I suggested Mr. Tanya try another agent.

But if his project had attracted me, I’d have a nagging question: Why didn’t he use his own email account? Is he shy? A technophobe? Neither is appealing when publishers expect authors to promote their work. At the least, the writer had given no thought to communicating professionalism.

Cutesy Names
Which brings me to writers who insist on using “creative” email addresses. You’ve seen them. Ones like GodsChosenWriter@isp.com. Or CutePuppies&Kittens@isp.com. Or BonnetsandVampiresWrytr@isp.com.

Save your creativity for your prose. In an email address, you can’t go wrong with FirstnameLastname@isp.com. Or Firstname@FirstnameLastname.com.

Having an account dedicated to your writing adds to the impression you’re serious about your craft. Much more than a funky-named account you also use for personal email. And definitely more than your spouse’s account.

What’s the cost of a poor first impression? A lot more than the price of establishing a free email account for your writing business — in your own name.

About Andy Scheer

With more than 30 years in publishing, Andy Scheer has provided freelance editorial services since 2010. He has edited fiction and nonfiction for publishers including Moody, WinePress, and BelieversPress, as well as for clients including Dirk Cussler, McNair Wilson, DiAnn Mills, Heather Day Gilbert, and Sammy Tippit.
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