I’m not much on having my picture taken—no selfies for this self-conscious writer—but part of my publishing contract with Barking Rain Press, signed July 2014, included having a hi-resolution photo of me for The Hanged Man’s Noose.
My friend, Nina, likes to tell me that I’m a “rules follower.” I suppose she’s right, because I immediately went and had studio photos taken last summer. Here’s the thing: although I used the photos on this website and on Facebook and Twitter, I have never felt comfortable with them. It wasn’t just that my hair was having an off-day (something Nina, who is also my hair stylist, was quick to point out—and no, she didn’t style my hair that day), but the fact that the studio did something called a “magazine retouch.” In short, I stopped looking like ME and started looking like me, only 20 years younger.
Now, you might be thinking, “What’s so wrong with that?” But the whole idea behind having your photo in your novel (or on the back cover) is that you hope people will recognize you at a writing convention or what-have-you. Not to think, “Hmmmm, must’a been a few years since that photo was taken!”
Still, as much as I wanted to look natural, I wanted to look my best. I turned to Nina, who in turn set me up with Christina, a local make-up artist. A test drive to be sure I wasn’t going to turn into the painted lady and we were ready to go.
The day of the photo shoot was a cool, windy May day. Nina did my hair and Christina did my make-up. By the time I left the salon to meet with Jen, I felt like a fairy tale princess. Jen let me change outfits three times and took photos in several spots in Bond Lake Park. The entire day was magical, and so far removed from my sterile studio experience a few months earlier.
A few days later, Jen sent me the photos, and I was allowed to select 14 out of 65, to be used for a variety of purposes. Narrowing the selection down was relatively easy. After all, 14 pictures is a lot (especially for someone who doesn’t like to have their picture taken). Finding the one photo to use in The Hanged Man’s Noose, that was a challenge. But, with the help of my husband, Mike, I managed to do it.
Here’s my second choice:
My first choice? You’ll have to wait for the book!
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