Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Author Photos

Professional-Studio Author photo (2010), GQ look, which provoked my daughter to ask: "Why are you playing with your wrist, Dad?"

Recently, at the request of a publisher, I scheduled a new slate of professional author photos.  It's an expensive venture, and I'm not sure if the publisher is sending me subliminal messages like:  "You now look like an old goat" or "Please take your next set of photos in dim light" or "Do you have a stunt-double?" or "Can you photoshop these puppies?"

But it could be that the publisher is readying to take the plunge and actually send me a new contract. I can only hope so.  I'd hate to take all of these new photos just so Becky can throw darts at them.  This is humiliating and does nothing for my marriage, though she gets a kick out of it when she scores a bulls eye inside my right eyeball (my "good" eye).  I have a feeling there are many other people who would enjoy tossing darts on my face as well.  However . . . .

Author photos do create a sense of belonging.  Whenever I pay for new ones, especially, I feel as though I am part of a special fraternity of wordsmiths who, though sometimes known by face or name, long to be more intimately known through their craft.  I don't really care about the photos.  I deeply care about the sentences I commit to paper (or digital).

Photos also remind me that, while some day I will depart this life and my face and name will seep into the dust like thin brown gravy, there is at least a small chance (though dim) that some sentence or paragraph I have written may yet live on in future pages or publications.  I have no idea what Shakespeare looked like, or Milton, or even the prophet Isaiah . . . but their words have impacted me. 

OK.  I'll get my photo taken.  I'll even diet, workout, and tan to get ready for the photo shoot.  But shoot . . . I'd rather be writing.

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