Wednesday, May 13, 2009



I like the headshot you see all over my blog and site, but decided it was time for something new for my book. I do have wedding hair in this photo after all, and writers of literary fiction aren't supposed to be so glammed up.

Over the weekend, Rachel Eliza Griffiths took a bunch of nice pictures of me, after I visited a Mac cosmetics counter and asked for some help in depuffing from the previous night of six hours at a Wagner opera. Did you know that fancy makeup now has caffeine in it to stop your face from swelling? Anyway, all those photos were narrowed down to eight choices, and here are the final two, as selected by the publisher. I have to pick one for my jacket.

Most people like this serious photo, which I think makes me look old, haggard and on the verge of a migraine. My head also looks enormous. My hair looks cool, though, and since my cover art involves cool hair, I might have to go with this picture.

My agent likes this smiling picture, which I tend to think is closer to my personality. I look much younger than I have any right to in this picture.

This is probably my favorite picture--I am laughing at something Gordon is saying to me, as he stands off to the side to help me relax--but I get that I can't use a picture in which I am not making "eye contact."

These two pictures crack me up. I've seen author photos like these before, and maybe one day if I am ever "in conversation" with someone at a place like, say, the The New York Public Library, and I need to look like I take myself very seriously, I can use one of these pictures. In the meantime, I'm just not sure that I can really bring myself to do so.

The romantic in me likes this rather dreamy pose, but once again, I'm not "looking" at you.

So there you go--some of my choices. Let me know which one you like.

Oh goodness, they are all great pictures!
But the "you are not looking at me" thing never crossed my mind before when looking at author pictures...hmmm.

You have a great smile so that was my first pick...(like my opinion really matters...)
I'd say go with the one that "fits" the story.

I am really looking forward to the publication!
If you wish to use the fun one then the second form the top is the winner. However, the bottom one is very good. It is a serious kind but since you are not staring at us, like the very top one, it draws more attention from the viewers.
2nd from the top gets my vote.
I like your favorite the best. Even though you're not looking at the camera, your expression is inviting.

Otherwise, I like the second one.

If you go with the "serious" one, I'm sure the photo could be retouched.
I'm sorry but I cannot condone the use of any except your favorite, regardless of what your publisher may think... Who needs yet another dust-jacket portrait of someone staring at the camera-- you may as well be a package of batteries or bologna or other products beginning with 'B'... It's the best shot, you like it and it conveys personality... Just tell your publisher this will make them cutting edge and they'll be all over it...
Wow. Thank you so much for all the comments and the suggestions! What fun to hear from all of you.
Years ago my grandmother had plastic surgery. My aunt as a post surgery gift took her to glamour shots at a mall in Southeast Michigan. One of the shots was the "leaning on hand serious expression" shot. I called it her book jacket pose.

The first one that everyone 'loves' needs some serious photoshopping -- I say this as a graphic designer. You are much more beautiful than that. As evidenced by the other photos. But the hair is awesome, perhaps a little photoshop work here and there? Who notices these things?

The one where you're smiling and looking at the camera, looks way too peppy. Like a 8x10 you might use to promote your new Disney Channel show.

The second "leaning on hand serious expression" shot isn't too bad. You've got a mischievous twinkle in your eye.

So I guess that leaves the first. BUt seriously, just some slight photoshopping around the eyes. Between friends, no one will know.
I would love to do some photoshopping--don't know how. I sent off the photos already. Ack! I like the ones with the hands--but I just never pose like that. One friend told me to get all new photos. These things are difficult. But I thank you for the compliment and detailed feedback.
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