Why would someone do this?
Why would a writer spend nearly a decade building a fan base, publish nearly 20 novels under a name, and then decide to change course out of nowhere? I’m not sure I can answer that, but it still feels oh-so-right to me.
I’ve been publishing books under the name A.R. Wise ever since I released Deadlocked 1 back on November 9th, 2011 (Almost 8 years ago!) Since then I’ve released a total of 8 Deadlocked books, the 314 trilogy, 3 Lincoln Pierce mystery novels, a couple Among the Masses books, the Dave apocalypse books, Survive, Daughter of Bathory, as well as a bunch of other stuff. What sense does it make to change from A.R. Wise to just simply A. Wise?
First off, I feel like I’ve spent the last 8 years learning a lot. I’ve learned about the ups and downs of the industry. I’ve learned what it feels like to have a book go viral, and also what it feels like to have a book hit the market with a thunderous thud. I’ve learned how a writer’s life can be filled with unexpected ups and downs, and that it can be just as treacherous as it is rewarding. And I’ve learned a lot about the writing process – building arcs, establishing characters, and just plain writing better stories. All in all, I’ve gained some wisdom in these past 8 years.
Second, and this is more of a personal issue, dropping the ‘R’ represents letting go of something that’s plagued me my whole life. It’s saying goodbye to something I’ll always recognize as a part of me, but something I no longer need nor want to be part of what defines me. Sorry for being vague, but that’s the way it is.
Third, I was born with a pun as a name. I’ve heard it a million times from a million people. The whole joke about, “Are you really wise?” Sounds stupid to let a pun become an important part of my identity, but let’s be honest, there are countless authors out there looking to make a name for themselves. Every little trick we can use to make readers remember us is something we shouldn’t overlook. So why not start using the fact that my name is ‘A.Wise’? And it felt so natural to call this site ‘A Wise Author.’ Frankly, it’ll be memorable to people when I release ‘A Wise Podcast’. As silly as that sounds, in marketing that sort of shit matters!
Over the course of 2020 I plan on finishing up some of the series that I’ve left hanging out there, and then starting to jump into some new and meaningful books that I’ve been eager to write.
And this fresh new start is happening for another reason as well. I want the chance to bring along the fans who have been there with me all along, and reward them with better access to me than ever before. I want to treat this as a complete restart of my writing career, and go back to frequent contests and giveaways like I did back 7 or 8 years ago when I was just getting things started.