Because for each pen name you have to maintain at least a small identity and that starts to add up.
I have my real-life identity and this pen name already. Plus I just added a new pen name for the non-fiction book.
And, even though I’m not really planning on promoting that book much, I have started to do a little bit, which required an e-mail address and signing up for a few sites.
(What can I say? I’m anal and compulsive and feel a need to do something. Seems I can’t just publish it and forget it like I was hoping to do.)
So, I now have a new e-mail address for the new pen name, I have two for the old pen name, and five or six for the real me. And I have this blog and user accounts on various forums for all three.
It really starts to add up.
Right now no one is really expecting either of my pen names to interact with them. I lurk most forums far more than I post, so I’m not having to check up on ongoing conversations. And I don’t have any fans that are writing me and expect a response.
But imagine if I did or were active in the forums? Times that by three or four personas. That’s a full-time job! Where does the writing go?
Plus there’s the issue of keeping them straight. I’m already concerned that I’ll get the new pen name and the old one mixed up and post under one name when I mean to post under the other.
(I even saw an example of this the other day. Some guy meant to comment using his own forum name, but had logged in under an alternate name he occasionally used to make funny posts without realizing it. He ended up making a post under the alternate name but signing the bottom of the post with his own name. Oops.)
While I still think I needed a pen name for this first book, I can’t imagine going beyond this pen name, that one, and my real name.