Monday, February 19, 2007


I will swear under oath that I am not into Phil Collins, even if I like a couple of his songs. (The other one is “Against All Odds”.) However, I’m like, totally, an Eighties girl which probably explains a lot about me.

(Announcement of winner of signed book covers at foot of message!)

So given the current stream of consciousness at this here Tea Party about pseudonyms, I thought I’d tackle it as well. Grab a cuppa and a Tim Tam and settle back. (Ooh, you girls know how to do a Tim Tam Slam, right?)

I chose Celia May Hart because Celia is so often written to by the (R)romantic poets when they didn’t want to reveal who they worshipped (or slept with). May is my birth month. I so totally didn’t mean to gain a Southern feel to that -- but hey, if it throws people off the scent, so be it! Finally, Hart is my grandmother’s maiden name. She’s the one that was conceived out of wedlock...

So why the pseudonym? It wasn’t just because I switched to writing erotic stories. You know I have been for ages. I didn’t mind who knew what I was writing: not my family (except for Nana) or the folks at church or at work (when I had a day job). Not that I throw it in anybody’s faces, either, you understand. I don’t know what half of them do for a living either. (Well, ok, I do know what my former workmates do, but you know what I mean.)

I readily admit the idea of prisoners finding me as a result of what I wrote squicked me out a wee bit -- but it squicked out the hubby more. He doesn’t share. (That wasn’t TMI, was it?)

I took it because I’d published sweet Regencies with Kensington, and a) my sweet Regency readers might self-implode if this super-hot smut revolted them, and I might never be able to sell them something under my own name again; and b) the book distributors would pick up fewer of my books because the Regencies stopped selling well. (which kinda means selling under my own name again is very unlikely.)

Yep. It came down to marketing and book distribution.

Isn’t that utterly nonromantic?

So that’s my pseudonym story.

Ok, so I listed all the folks who asked me questions, in the order they asked, and picked a random number generated by And the winner is..... Cherie! Email me at with your name and address, and I’ll send out your prize post-haste!


seton said...

I love Ben Jonson's TO CELIA. Any tribute to the cavalier poets is great in my book!

Kate said...

Well, we all have our reasons and I think your pen name is beautiful.

I have "Made For Sin" sitting on my bookshelf staring at me but I still have to finish up my RITA books-help!

I got the opportunity to try a Tim Tam at the RWAOnline party last year, courtesy of some of our Australian members. They were fab and reminded me of an English Penguin biscuit.

Jane Lockwood said...

I like your pseudonym--it sounds very Edwardian to me for some reason.

I suspect there may be more crossover with the trad regency audience than we think. None of us are throwing out the history because we're writing erotic historicals--that's what this blog is all about. I hope some readers who liked your trads might want to read your other books because they like your writing and they like your sense of history.

Other than the vociferous few who feel that western civilization fell when Kensington and Signet gave up the ghost, I wonder what the rest of them are reading?

Celia May Hart said...

Jane, hmm. The regencies I'm tossing out (aka, giving away) because now I don't have to read them to "know" the genre?

Actually, I'm keeping the ones that I have read and liked in the guest bedroom so folks have something to read beside poetry and Cherry Ames books, which are also stored there.

Kate, I shall have to order in some Tim Tams for National this year, I see...

Lenora Bell said...

Hi Celia, I'm with Jane, I think your pseudonym sounds Edwardian, like a character from an Edith Wharton novel. But you mentioned it striking some people as southern, and I have the same problem.

I chose Lenora because it was my great-grandmother's name and Bell because it was the male pseudonym the Brontë sisters used (Charlotte was Currer Bell). I had no idea it made me sound like a sweet little old lady living in Arkansas.

Lenora Bell said...

Oh, and I had no idea what a Tim Tam was until I googled it. Can I still come to the teaparty?