"Finally giving female writers the credit they deserve."

Twenty-five female authors who were published under male pen names will finally be getting their work published under their own names, reclaiming credit for work that has long gone to male authors.

History has long been unfriendly to female authors and many women writers throughout history have been forced to publish under a male pseudonym to have their work legitimized. Even modern authors write under androgynous or male-sounding names—J.K. Rowling, the author of the Harry Potter series, was told to write under her initials, giving the name more appeal to both male and female readers. She also wrote a crime thriller under the name Robert Galbraith. Other famous examples include Louisa May Alcott who wrote under the name A.M Barnard, and Nora Roberts has written books under the name J.D. Robb.

A new project called "Reclaim Her Name" was announced by the Women’s Prize for Fiction to celebrate the 25th anniversary of the awards. In collaboration with Baileys, a collection of 25 books has been re-released with the appropriate names on the covers for the very first time. All the books are being offered as free eBooks in an effort to get as many people as possible access to read them.

“Throughout history, many female writers have used male pen names for their work to be published or taken seriously. Today we are very excited to reveal the #ReclaimHerName collection, 25 books previously published under male pen names, with the real, female authors’ names finally printed on the covers, to honour their achievements and give them the credit they deserve.”

"Reclaim Her Name" Project – List of Female Authors:

  • Middlemarch by Mary Ann Evans (aka George Eliot)
  • Marie Of the Cabin Club by Ann Petry (aka Arnold Petri)
  • Attila, My Attila! by Edith Copper and Katherine Bradley (aka Michael Field)
  • A Phantom Lover by Violet Page (Vernon Lee)
  • Indiana by Amantine Aurore Dupin (aka George Sand)
  • Keynotes by Mary Bright (aka George Egerton)
  • A Diplomats Diary by Julia Cruger (aka Julien Gordon)
  • The History of Sir Richard Calmady by Mary Kingsley (aka Lucas Malet)
  • Valerie Aylmer by Frances Tiernan (aka Christian Reid)
  • Some Emotions and A Moral by Pearl Richards (aka John Oliver Hobbes)
  • Cecilia De Noel by Mary Hawker (aka Lanoe Falconer)
  • Echoes From Mist-Land by Aubertine Woodward Moore (aka Auber Forestier)
  • Iras: A Mystery by Henrietta Everett (aka Theo Douglas)
  • Twilight by Julia Frankau (aka Frank Danby)
  • Ye Game and Playe of Cheese & Other Stories by Alice Dunbar Nelson (Monroe Wright)
  • Takekurabe Growing Up by Natsu Higuchi (Ichiyo Higuchi)
  • The Head of Medusa by Julia Fletcher (George Fleming)
  • The Life of Martin R. Delany by Frances Rollin Whipper (Frank A. Rollin)
  • Garden of Kama by Violet Nicolson (Laurence Hope)
  • Atla: A Story of the Lost Island by Ann Smith (Gregory Smith)
  • For Our Country by Fatemeh Farahani (aka Shahein Farahani)
  • The Roadmender by Margaret Fairless Barber (aka Michael Fairless)
  • Painted Clay by Doris Boake Kerr (aka Capel Boake)
  • The Silence of Dean Maitland by Mary Tuttiett (aka Maxwell Gray)
  • How White Men Assist in Smuggling Chinamen Across the Border in Puget Sound Country by Edith Maude Eaton (aka Mahlon T. Wing)

Books can be downloaded from the Baileys “Reclaim Her Name” website.

This is a great way to draw some awareness of the struggles that female authors have faced throughout history (and in modern times)!

Who is your favorite female author? Let us know in the comments.