Mystery, suspense, thrillers, paranormal, horror & YA by "Cheryl Kaye Tardif" & romance by "Cherish D'Angelo". Cheryl is represented by Trident Media Group in NY.

Thursday, March 12, 2009

What's in a name?

Okay, I'll answer this question: lots of letters. Check it out: Cheryl Kaye Tardif. Lots of letters. Looks simple enough though, doesn't it? But, boy, it's caused me some grief over the years.

First, I always have to spell my name for sound checks for radio and television interviews. My name is grueling to spell, especially my last name. When I say "f", people think I'm saying 's', so I always say: "'f' like Frank". They still put 's' (like Srank?)

I started off signing my books Cheryl Kaye Tardif, until my hand started to ache. No one seemed to notice when I started leaving off the Kaye.

Sometimes I get people who call me "Cheryl Kaye", like my name is similar to "Billie-Jo" or "Mary-Anne". Is the "Kaye" part of my first name or an invisible middle name?


Here's the story: Kaye is my maiden name. No, I didn't hypenate my two last names. I've used it only for writing--because I always said that it was the original Cheryl Kaye who is the writer, as opposed to the wife and mother Cheryl Tardif. Well, it made sense to me back then.

So now I'm considering pulling a Koontz. You know, a Dean Koontz. He's one of my favorite suspense authors, but when I first started reading him decades ago, his author name was "Dean R. Koontz". I guess he got tired of that "R" in the middle.

Out of curiosity, I'd like to take a poll. I'll post it next. Then you can answer my poll and tell me what my author name should be.

~Cheryl...or maybe CT Rowling...or Stephanie King?


Linda in New York said...

What an interesting proposition! Reminds me of that "Queen of Crime" Dorothy L. Sayers, who used to cut a person to the quick with her famous glare if they dared to leave off the "L".

Are you up for the challenge? It could be daunting, but I guess it could be a PR opp as well. I'm going to vote for "Cheryl Tardif." But to take your subject line and personalize it, YOU by any name will write as well and be as well-loved.

Cheryl Tardif said...

Funny you mention Dorothy L. Sayers' reaction. I always feel compelled to correct someone if they leave out the Kaye or if they call me Cheryl Kaye. This is another reason why I'm considering the change. Leaving out a middle name is less confusing. :)

It's so interesting to see the votes here.

I was tempted to add "CT Rowling" and "Stephanie King" as choices...hehe

Anonymous said...

I like the full name -- think Mary Higgins Clark -- now that's a mouthful, but it works. My personal opinion is that three names that flow together, as yours does, sound important and professional. And I think people tend to remember it more because it is different. I understand the "f" part, having a name that ends in two f's. People almost always want to change them to "s" and I find myself saying "F as in Frank, F as in Frank". Kind of sounds like a mantra as I say it.

As far as the autograph problem, maybe you could slide the signature out -- not sure if that's a term for it. Take a look at a signature like George Stephanopoulus; he takes that name and makes it look like three letters. Then again when I saw Madeline Albright speak and had her sign my book, her writing was the most beautiful I had ever seen from an author. When I commented on it, she said "I figure that if people are going to stand in line for my autograph I should make sure they can read it".

So, my friend, after all that....I'm just saying I'm in favor of you keeping your full name! :-)

Pat Bertram said...

K (and C)is a good hard sound that many big names have: Koontz, King, Kellerman, Crichton, Cornwell. Just saying . . .