October 1, 2013

You can't see the 6th grade boy who carved
this turnip and is holding it, lit, in a dark room.

What’s in a (Pen) Name?

Sometimes we authors decide to step out of our specific genre and work on other types of writing. Often we choose a pen name -- Lemony Snicket is Daniel Handler’s nom de plume for instance.
     It’s worked for legends like Stephen King and Nora Roberts; not so successful for J.K. Rowling, who was found out a few months back when she tried to publish under a pen name. (There are too many temptations to “out” people these days.)
     I have a pen name, too.  I’m using it to get a long-loved project of mine, started when my kids were little, out into the world.  The name is Tam Cassidy (male or female -- we’ll never know) and the project is Avery’s Pumpkin: A Halloween Tale
    Avery’s Pumpkin is a 14,000 word chapter book suitable for kids grade 3 and up -- and for adults who want to read it to them.  It’s available on Kindle through Amazon and can be downloaded on any Kindle device or app.  And -- it’s now available for $1.99 through October 10.  Find it at amzn.to/16rJkbt
    And, you may rightfully ask, what on earth does this have to do with activities for kids?  Back when I wrote Elizabeth I: The People’s Queen, I included an activity on turnip carving.  I also included a bit of info about the history of Halloween.  And where did I first discover that history?  Back in the 1990s when I was researching the holiday for a scene in Avery’s Pumpkin.
    Which goes to show that learning is never wasted and often recycled. Sort of a compost bin when writers need ideas and information.
    Enjoy October. Carve a turnip. And give Avery’s Pumpkin a try. You just might discover what truly makes a pumpkin glow.

1 comment:

  1. Hi Kerrie/Tam! Your book sounds like a lot of Halloween fun! I'm going to recommend it to my upper grade friends!