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My Identity Crisis

I’d be lying if I said that recently I haven’t been thinking about writing a book.  I’ll be honest, I’m considering it. Naturally, the thought of writing a book has created a lot of questions in my mind.

How does one go about writing a book?

What should it be about?

Will anyone read it?

But the question that has me stumped the most is: How should I display my name on the book?

I share my name with a little known actress named Susan Ward.  When I first got married and became Susan Ward, I found no problem in this similarity.  I mean, I wasn’t planning on auditioning for any B-list movies.  Besides, there are about million Susan Wards in this country, it’s not realistic to assume I’m ever going to be in the top 10 Google search results. I’m pretty sure even my brother-in-law, the SEO expert that he is, couldn’t get me on the first page of Google (shameless plug: check him out at

If I were to write a book, is it really smart to have my name appear as Susan Ward?

Here’s a look at my alternatives.

Sue Ward – Nothing against the name Sue, in fact I know plenty of great women named Sue.  But a Sue, I am not. I never have been and never will.

Susie Ward – For about 5 minutes in college, I thought I could pull off the name Susie.  My entire childhood I hated the name Susie.  I thought it made me sound like a baby.  My best friend’s mom called me Susie Q and she was the only one that could do it without making me mad. But on the 6-hour drive to college for the first time, I was thinking about the fact that no one would know me and I thought about making the switch to Susie.  I would own it. However that night, I attended a dinner and there was a pre-printed name tag for me that read: Susan. So a Susan I remained.

Susan R. Ward – I feel this is my best shot. I don’t love it, but it’s really my best option.  I really don’t have what it takes to pull off a Sarah Jessica Parker move by including my entire middle name. So I’ll have to settle for just the middle initial.

I did a Google search for Susan R. Ward.  Turns out there is already an author named Susan R. Ward.  She wrote the book A Glimpse of Assam. Good news is she wrote it in 1884.  I think it’s safe to assume that she won’t be writing any more books.



How about a pen name? Then you could choose any name that you wanted.