Want to get your book published? Say ‘cheesy’!
“Author’s Photograph Essential In Marking A Book” a podcast from NPR
“Can you pose?” Now followed by, “Can you Write?” Gotta look good for the book jacket.
On NPR Morning Edition, Martha Woodroof reports for WMRA
This is a short podcast (under 4min.) on the somewhat appalling trend in book marketing based, in part, on an author’s photo.
I suppose though, as a photographer, that I should hail the use of photographic portraiture. After all, there aren’t many areas where a corporate design department must use a unique photograph, instead of just buying rights to generic stock photos. Unlike my use of the above photo! Hah!
And, after all, appearances are an essential part of how individuals and groups filter the world. We must make decisions about threats, resources, entertainment time, etc. We judge everyone else based on aspects of appearance, gender, age, cultural styling, etc. Why not judge authors? What? Their exercise of intellect should give them a free pass on what everyone else must endure?
I say, “book ’em”, equalize the playing field and only use mugs shots for book jackets? Maybe passport photos? High school yearbook photos? (What about us HS dropouts then?)
Perhaps, instead of too revealing photographic portraits, we should have alabaster busts commissioned, and placed in the inner coffee sanctums of the Border’s cafe’.
And how do we deal with the dearly departed authors of our publishing desires? I’m thinking Willie the Shakes, or Homer (the early one), or any of the pre-camera obscura faint past scribblers. Maybe a generic avatar would suffice?
Again, as a photographer, I come down on the side of the photographer and her/his work is an essential part of our world. Good portraiture can be useful, and possibly even timeless.
Updated 4-14-09: A newer related topic blog has been posted The Art Of The Headshot: Everyone’s A Real Estate Agent at the www.huffingtonpost.com also dealing with portraits and image.