Happy Tuesday, BGs. Hope y’all had a great holiday weekend.
Thanks for all your comments from Friday’s post. The bruises and swelling are down. I’m stuck with Band-Aids (haha) on my nose for another week. Then it’s back to see the Doc for a check-up. The stitches are supposed to dissolve—I just don’t know how long that takes. Then we'll see how long I have that tight-corset look down my nose, and the lumpy nostril.
Okay. Tomorrow we resume our character empathy series. Today, as long promised--The Photos. If you’ve been reading this blog for any length of time, you know the backstory, going all the way back to--what, February? How "a new look" was all Zondervan’s idea in the first place. (“You need a new photo. Your current one is too posed and too . . . nice. We want that mysterious Seatbelt Suspense author look.” Yada, yada.)
Then, as you know, came the first shoot at the lake in Coeur d’Alene. Which yielded not a single photo we wanted to use. So photo flunkee here had to undergo a second shoot—this time in studio in California. From this session, yielding over 200 shots, we were allowed to choose four different ones. Not as easy as it sounds. Like any self-respecting female, I hate all pictures of myself. (This is incurable, men; it’s in our DNA. Live with it.) So I figured finding four good photos would be nigh to impossible. But in the end, we managed. Sort of.
Photo 1. Here’s the main pick. This one will be on my books, this blog, the Web site, etc. Amazing--I actually like this one. I chose it right off. It's kind of a "Love-me-or-I'll-kill-you-in-a-dozen-torturous-ways" look. Hey, what more could I ask for?
Enter: the Zondervan folks (names withheld to protect the guilty). The main Z Person and I were talking on the phone about the four final choices. I told ZP this was my main choice. She and the art director originally had another shot in mind. As for this shot? ZP laughed. “Yeah, I like it too. But it sure reminds me of _____ (actress) in _____ (TV show). You know, the big eyes and mischievous smile.”
Well. It’s a good thing ZP and I are total buddies. (All I same, I’m rethinking her next Christmas present.) Because I did not find the comparison to said actress particularly flattering. And then to hear that ZP, the Z art director, and my agent (who just happened to be at Z that day) all chuckled at the supposed similarity and went, "Yeah, yeah." Sheesh. Nothing like three of your so-called biggest supporters giggling over your mug.
And no, don't ask. I refuse to tell you who the actress is. Because, doggone it all, ever since ZP spouted her spiel, I look at that photo and think of that TV show. I’ll never see the picture again in the same way. "Drat," I pouted to ZP, "what a pal you are. Once in a lifetime I like a photo of myself, and now you've ruined it forever.”
Nevertheless, this shall remain my #1 photo out of sheer stubbornness on my part.
Photo 2. This is the shot the Z folks originally chose as the main photo. Sort of a sassy "I-know-something-you-don't-know" expression. Or maybe it's an “I’ve-been-up-to-no-good, step-into-my-world-if-you-dare” look. Whichever. I like it pretty much. But I think I look kinda smart-alecky. Said as much to my assistant, who therewith replied, "Yeah, so what's new?"
Man, what is it about this photo-choosing thing? Brings out the worst in your friends, tell you what. A sure way to find out how they really feel about you.
Photo 3. ZP wanted this one in case we ever want a longer shot, and I said, “OK fine, whatever; it’s not bad.” It's not all that good either, but that's just my opinion, and what do I know? At least ZP and her cohorts didn't attach some actress's name to it.
Actually, photo #2 is a longer body shot also (I just cropped it a lot), so we could use that one instead of this. I think I prefer the smart-alecky look to this semi-vacant stare. No attitude here. Bo-ring.
Photo 4. Totally different just-for-the-heck-of-it look. ZP was happy with the first three shots, but since we got four in the package, she told me to choose any one I wanted for myself. "I really don’t know what I’ll do with this one," I told ZP. "I’m not even sure I look all that good. But it's just bizarre enough, you know?"
Would you guess that ZP had oodles of fun with this one?
First off, she insisted on referring to my fur hood as a “bunny hat.” Then she told me how she and her two giggle-buds decided I look like Joan Collins in Dynasty. Terrific. Such flattery. Last time I checked Joan Collins was just a tad older than I am. Alas, another photo for me now ruined. I will forever think of this as my “Joan Collins in a bunny hat” shot.
My mother absolutely hates this one, by the way. “What on earth did they do to you?” she cried. The picture hides my red hair, which is downright heresy in Mom's book.
So there you have 'em--the Final Four. Two photos compared to has-been actresses. The third looking smart-alecky. The fourth with a glazed "are-we-ever-gonna-be finished-with-this-shoot-yet?" look.
So have at it, BGs. Go ahead and supply all the snarky “That one looks like So&So in Such&Such comments you want. Remark on the long nose, the uneven eyebrows, the big eyes and whatever else you care to highlight. After my conversation with ZP, I can take anything. Get it out of your system, then we can get on with this here blog.
But the person who guesses ZP’s actress for photo #1 gets killed off in my next book, and that's a promise.