What’s in a name?

For those of you who know me in my daily life, my birth last name that I’ve held on to stubbornly for 55 years has a few unpronounced letters in it and other combinations that aren’t said as they look.  In other words, it’s hard for most people to say.

When it came time to think about how I wanted to identify myself, I spent many hours discussing options with my husband and other close confidantes.  After all, I love my last name!  It has historical meaning in Poland, it’s a very old name, and it’s part of my identity and heritage.

But no one would be able to spell it into a search engine.  Or even come close.

Comments from other writers at a conference I attended confirmed it.  When the third person asked me what my pen name was, I knew I need something shorter and easier for people to wrap their tongues around.

That led to The Search, or maybe more of a quest, but it was a long process of trying out names, checking to see if they were in use, and bouncing them off my inner circle.  I wanted something close to a name that meant something to me, but not something as ubiquitous as the Polish equivalent of Smith.  The name also needed to fit my selected genre, romance.

Luck me!  After ejecting letters from my last name and playing around with pronunciation, I realized that ‘Kohano’ is the perfect fit.  Loosely translated, it means ‘love’ in Polish.  In fact, it was a term of endearment that my maternal grandmother used with my sister and me when we were growing up.

What better name for a romance writer than ‘LOVE’?  Busia, this is for you!

Happy reading!


Accepting love means accepting yourself first…

1 Comment

  • Kay Kallas

    November 19, 2012

    Very nice explanation, Yvonne and a perfect pen name too!