Friday, September 21, 2007

Multiple Personalities

Like many authors, I chose to write under a pen name. In the publishing world, this has never presented a problem. In the dating world, however, it’s another story. I’ve found that no matter how hard I may try, there’s no way to keep my professional and personal lives separate. For instance, at a writing conference last year some of my authors pals and I went to a karaoke bar after hours. This adorable guy started chatting me up and (single gal that I am) I’m loving it. He asks my name and I gave him my real one. Of course I completely forget I’m still wearing my conference name badge that reads “Gemma Halliday”. He shakes my hand, looks down at my badge and gets a disgusted look on his face. Then says, “Wow, I can’t believe you just gave me a fake name, Gemma.” And walks away. Picture me staring forlornly after Mr. Hottie stuttering that I’d actually given him my real name, the badge was a fake!

Yeah, that sucked. But, nothing compares to the email I received last week. Through the wonders of MySpace (I love that site – totally addictive!) I started chatting with this totally cute Bad Boy Musician type. He’s the host of a local music TV station (think regional MTV) - cool guy, cool job (backstage perks!), and fun to talk to. So, we exchange a few emails, pretty standard getting-to-know-you stuff. Then the inevitable question comes up: What do you do for a living? So, I tell B.B. Musician I’m an author, that I write under a pen name, and then send him to my website to check out my books. I don’t hear back.

But, Gemma does. Through my website he sends an email to “Gemma” and tells her that there’s this chick he’s been emailing with on MySpace who is impersonating her. He even gives “Gemma” my MySpace ID so that she can report me and forwards her an email I sent him as proof that I’ve been stealing her identity. I open this email and ohmigod! I can’t believe it. This guy seriously has the cohones to go behind my back and warned me about me!?

Of course, I respond right away to tell him that, duh, it’s still me here, dunderbutt, and boy did you blow it with both of us. On the one hand, “Gemma” was kind of flattered that this guy thought she was such a big deal someone would steal her identity to get dates. On the other, “Real Me” was pretty dang miffed because, well, he thought I was lame enough to steal someone’s identity to get dates. Sigh. The sad thing is, I couldn’t even make this stuff up.

Anyone else ever had multiple personality issues? Mistaken identity? Betrayal by a B.B. Musician?

~Trigger Happy Halliday

36 comments:

Christie Craig said...

Oh, my God! LOL! Loved the story Gemma! This has to show up in a book sometime.

And you are right. You couldn't make this stuff up.

Crime Scene Christie

MsHellion said...

*ROTFL* OMG. My intent is to use a pen name, and I'm single...jeebers, is this what I can expect?

Did the musician even sound sheepish when you "corrected" him?

Cory said...

Wow. That's sweet and screwed up both at the same time. I would love to know your musician's response to the truth there.

Tori Lennox said...

OMG! ROFL!!! Like the others, I want to know what he said when you corrected him!

Gemma Halliday said...

He was actually very sheepish and apologetic when I pointed out his major faux pax. Almost to the point of being cute again. Almost.

~Gemma

Amanda Brice said...

LOL! Seriously, that's hilarious! Hmm...how can this apply to Maddie, I wonder.

So, what did BB Musician do when you set him straight?

Nathalie said...

That was very funny Gemma... besides pen names are very classy. But why do authors chose them... is it because they have a traditionnal career and the writing is on the side? or they don't want people to know who they are - to keep their privacy?

Lily said...

The story on the badge is funny... I have four first names and on national exams I have to write them all... and the examiners always get confused when I present my ID where there is only one of them.

Kristen Painter said...

You poor sweet thing. Trust me, when the right man comes along, he won't care if your name is Bobo.

Maggie said...

Very funny... thanx for the laugh. I second Nathalie's post... why did you take a pen name - if I am not indiscreet of course? Is the pseudonym more catchy on a cover?

PS: is the contest still running :)

Crystal Jordan said...

*giggle, snort, sputter* What a jackass, but OMG funny. I'm so sorry, Gemma. I hate the multiple personality dating game. Ick.

Shelli Stevens said...

OOOOOOOOOOOOMG I'm laughing so hard right now. That's just beyond stupid. And obviously the man thinks a lot of himself.

Yeah, don't forgive him for that. You know if you stayed together he'd be the same guy who calls the restaurant you said you were at just to make sure you were really there. Then he'd probably ask what you ordered!

But on a serious note, I'm so proud of you for even being out there and dating. I don't even try.

Lucy said...

That was too funny. Thanks for the laugh.

jax said...

OMG, I laughed so hard at your post Gemma I got stares from my co-workers!

I can't say I've ever been dumped because of a pen name/mistaken identity...

Although, I have had guys find it incredibly sexy and dirty that I'm role playing... LOL

Gemma Halliday said...

You dirty girl, Jax! ;)

I decide to take a pen name mostly because a) I'm a single gal living on my own and b) I fear fan mail from prisoners. Seriously, there are a lot of weirdoes out there. I’ve already had issue with an over-zealous male fan that ventured a into creepy territory. I was VERY glad that he didn’t have my real name and had no way of physically tracking me down. Because I’m pretty sure he would have. Having said that, Halliday is a family name (just not mine), so I don’t feel like I’m completely playing the role of someone else. Contrary to what Mr. Musician thought.

~Gemma

Gemma Halliday said...

Maggie - Yes, the contest is still running! I was out of town last weekend and didn't get to post a winner, so we’ll have two winners posted this weekend. Which means we’ll have one more week left. After that, I'm pretty sure Christie is cooking up a new fun contest.

For anyone who doesn’t know about it – if you post a comment to any post on our blog, you’re entered to win a prize pack of books from all of us Killer Fiction ladies. And the more times you post, the more times you’re entered. So, you are all good. ;)

~Gemma

Eden Bradley said...

OMG-this is hysterical! I mean, it's probably funnier to us. I mean...poor you! Sorry!
hehehehehe...

Stacy S said...

That's too funny.. I so don't miss being single.

Jennifer Lewis said...

ROFL. At least you found out he's a total moron without wasting any time going on a date!

Do not fall for the "sheepish and cute" act. "Dumb" is the word to keep in the forefront of your mind :-D

Jen

Nathalie said...

Thanx for the quick reply! Fan mail from priosoners and you are so serious, plus some stalkers... I feel I am I aa watching a soap! Some people are so weird and I am glad you have a pen name!

PS: I have to say I really like the name Gemma :) And imagine if there was a real Gemma Halliday out there, who received some unwanted mail... that would be really creepy!!

Maggie said...

Talking of alter egos... I write my name on the blog Maggie, but in real life... I spell it in an other fashion, which is quite rare and would be easily retraceable, so I change it to the usual spelling when I blog. Once I searched for my authentic first name and it says that less than 500 have writen it the way I do since 1946... That is very few people!!

Maggie said...

Oups. I forgot to say thanx about the details of the contest :))

Lanie said...

I can't tell whether or not to laugh at him or laugh at him trying to get you in trouble. On one hand, that was kind of nice of him (to Gemma), but really distrusting/tacky of him to you. The real you. err. You know what I mean.

I kind of relate with both of you. It is hard to get to know people online, especially ones that tell you they have great jobs (writers, actors, billionaires (I've heard that, yes) and so on).

Okay, I made up my mind: I'm laughing at everything. That really sucks for you, though. Be happy to know he's probably still kicking his own butt for that stunt he pulled.

Jana DeLeon said...

I hate that these stories are funny, but by God, they just are - sorry, "Gemma." :)

I write under my own name so I haven't had the identity problem - although sometimes, I'm not quite aware of who I am (whole other story). But I did have a lady follow me out of a restaurant after discussing how to kill someone on the phone with a critique partner. She took down my license plate. :)

Lily said...

That was funny... she took your plate, I often wonder what people think when they hear us in the restaurant. Once a lady came to me and started moralizing about late term abortion - which I was discussing with friends, all of us in med school!

Well, I am getting off subject, that is why I am not a writer!

Cassandra said...

ROFL! Sorry, but oh, sugar! That is simply priceless.

I agree with the poster who said it needs to go into one of your future books. LOL

As for me, I get easily confused.
Just this last week I signed a check using my pen name, then had to explain myself and rewrite it again when the cashier asked for my driver's license. LOL. If my mum hadn't been there she probably wouldn't have taken the check. LOL

Thank goodness my friends, my family, and my dh are there to remind me who I am.

I'm daughter, sister, aunt, niece, great-aunt, cousin, friend, and to my dh, his better half, aka his sexy red-headed witch. :)

Kathy Bacus said...

Ohmigosh, you couldn't write this stuff, Gemma!!!! Er, well maybe YOU could. ;)

I use my own name for my humorous stuff. I figure it took me long enough to sell, I'm going to make sure I get my name on some books!!!

I am planning to use a pen name for my other projects, however. I'm currently doing the great pen name search for my YA stuff and serious hardboiled series. My cousin who is into geneology sent me a list of family surnames to consider. I'd pretty much decided on one I liked for the YA books until I Googled it and found it already belonged to someone else: A porn star. Sigh. I'm still looking.

~Kathy a/k/a 'Bullet Hole'~

Estella said...

How funny!

Dana Belfry Romance Author said...

You know what? I tell your name badge at the karaoke bar at parties. I'm serious. It's not as funny when you add it to the random idiot MTV guy. That just stinks!

Johnny said...

LOL and the first question I get asked when I say I write romance is "Are you gay?"

LOL hey here is an idea....group of romance writers who live in same city and meet at a bar once a week for their BS meeting. One can be a guy that has to bitch about his woes of being newly divorced and not taken seriously by women.... oh nevermind, that's too close to home!

Babe King said...

rofl Poor Gemma. Of course, you could look at it that you were lucky to find out at an early stage how snarky these guys are. If they'll react like that, why would you want to be with them? You deserve better.

Sara York said...

Wow, that's so strange. I guess you have to explaine everything to them in slow speak, like to a child.

Gemma Halliday said...

Oh Kathy, a porn star? I could see some seriously funny misunderstandings there. Yeah, I'd move on to another name.

And don't anyone feel bad for laughing at this. After the shock and disbelief wore off, I was LMAO, too. He will definitely be in a book. Hmm… I needed a murder victim for my next heels book… ;)

~Gemma

Lillian Feisty said...

O.M.G.

If it makes you feel any better, one of my best friend's husbands told me last night that he wanted me to start my own personal myspace page because he wasn't sure "feisty was his thing." I was like WTF?

People are strange!

Jenyfer Matthews said...

Who needs to make things up when things like this happen in real life??

Sassy Sistah said...

I'm with everyone else - that's hilarious - even though I'm sure it wasn't funny to you at the time! Thanks for making me laugh out loud first thing on a Sunday morning!

I'll look forward to seeing a version of that in one of your books in the future!