I Changed My Pen Name to Something Less Professional, Because Reasons

If you’re here today – by which I mean the day I am publishing this and not, say, August 2022 (hello future person, thank you for dredging through my archives, you absolute hero) – you probably already know a bit about me. I assume. Because how the hell else would you have found this site ALREADY? Unless you’re some kinda internet ninja with a good nose for sniffing out blogs that are going to be wildly successful (I appreciate the vote of confidence).

So, I figured I’d explain why I’ve suddenly decided to change my professional pen name to something decidedly less professional and abandon my long-held, somewhat successful blog (hey Claire from August 2022, it was called Untamed Writing and I’m not linking to it because I’ll probably have deleted it by the time you read this) after a long-ass unplanned hiatus from blogging.

Well, the explanation for why I abandoned Untamed Writing is pretty simple: I was done with blogging about freelancing and copywriting. I quit selling courses about how to become a freelance writer, so I didn’t need to blog about that any more. And I get enough copywriting jobs without blogging about it, so I didn’t need it for that either.

For the past year, my work has centred solely on writing copy for my clients. Which, you know, is nice. It pays the bills and I get to spend a lot of time in coffee shops. But it’s not necessarily what I want to do forever. I’d rather write the things I want to write than the things other people want me to write for them. And I wanted a new website dedicated to that. A fresh start! You know how it is.

Okay sure. But why, in the year of our lord 2019, did I decide to change my name? Until now I’ve always gone by Karen professionally, not Kaz. Kaz is what everyone used to call me, and what some people still call me now. But I always introduce myself as Karen. WELL, NOT ANY MORE. It’s time to kick things down a notch.

To make this fun (even more fun than it already would have been, anyway, which is extremely fun) I’m going to give you a list of options and let you to figure out which are true and which are not. Here you go:

  1. It’s a tribute to elegant man of taste, Kaz Kaan.
  2. It will look better on a book cover. Which is important because of all the bestselling books I am going to write.
  3. Karen has become the defacto name of gossiping coworkers and uptight aunts in memes across the land. (Let’s please bring Janet back soon, okay?)
  4. Kaz feels like a better fit – more me. Which matters in an era of being true to yourself and chasing your dreams and all that crap.
  5. Some damn artist from New York has owned karenmarston.com since the beginning of time.
  6. It’s shorter, more memorable and less common.
  7. All the social media handles are available.

If you know me as Karen, you can keep calling me Karen. I will still respond to that, obviously. I will also respond to carrot if you’re in shouting distance, but I’d appreciate it if you wouldn’t test that theory.

Alright, so now maybe you’re wondering what I’m gonna write about from now on, if not freelancing and copywriting? Umm. Well. I’m just kind of going to let that unfold. It’s definitely going to be more personal stuff rather than business-related. I’ll probably still talk about writing, just not so much the business side of things. But I’ll also talk about life in general, and how to mangle it into something better.

VAGUE, I KNOW. Apologies. I can tell you that it will be written in the same fabulous, hilarious style you have undoubtedly grown to love. So there’s that.

If you miss my newsletters, then I have some excellent news for you: I’m starting a new one! I won’t be sending them to my old mailing list any more, so you’ll need to sign up again. It’s reckless of me to abandon an email list I’ve spent six years building, I know, but this is a different site with a different subject matter, and it would feel shady to suddenly start emailing everyone about something other than what they signed up for. Also I have to do this by law. In reality, my new emails will probably be exactly the same as my old ones, but what the hell.

So, come sign up for my new newsletter! In the first one I’ll be writing about my radio silence for the last year, what I was struggling with and why it took me so long to end up here. Probably.