Jan 13, 2008

Publicity Photos

by Marsha Ward

On March 15th, I'm participating in the High Desert Book Fair in southern Arizona, Sierra Vista, to be exact. Earlier this week, as I was filling out my application for a book table for the signing, I noticed that I was supposed to provide an author photo and an image of one book cover.

No problem with the book cover image. I have that. The problem is with the author photo. I have some old ones, of the print-type. Very old ones. Very, very old ones. I don't think they are representative of my present visage.

I have some reasonably recent digital photos, but I've undergone a haircut since they were taken. What to do? I needed to take some self-portraits.

Well, I love my little house, but it's cramped for space with me and all my books and papers and, well, stuff. There is not a good background surface in all the house.

I got to thinking. Sunday was coming. The church building has some wonderful background surfaces. Aha!

I made sure my camera was in my purse this morning. After all the meetings, I found a quiet spot in a back hall near the restrooms and started to take pictures. A woman came along and volunteered to do it for me, so I let her snap a shot. When she left, I continued. It takes a lot of shots to make me look great!

A bunch of young men came into view in the aftermath of their classroom tidying tasks. The rolling garbage can is always good for a ride or two for the smallest of them. While they played around, I kept snapping pictures. I'm sure they thought I was nuts.

I was anxious to let them know that I wasn't, so I told them I needed a publicity photo. Several of them know I'm an author, so that worked out well.

Now I have a pose that I like, and I'll send it off to the publicity chairwoman tomorrow, along with the book cover image.

Thank goodness for digital cameras and flat backgrounds!


  1. Marsha,

    I struggled with the same thing! One of the hardest things to get together after signing my contract with CFI was my photo. I'm still not happy with mine but perhaps that is because the subject isn't as young or thin as she used to be or is still in my mind (but no where else.) I spent $275 on my shots- my husband would have loved it if I was like you- and its a cute picture too!

  2. Thanks, Christine! You can hardly even tell I took it with my left hand. As I cropped it, my shoulder doesn't even look like it's raised. Hurray for PhotoShop, too.

  3. I love it--and you would NEVER know that you snapped it of yourself with your outstretched hand. Way to go, Marsha! Way to show us the way!

  4. Thank you, Liz. The key is to take a lot of pictures. There's bound to be two or three out of twenty that are usable.

  5. (I lose more comments because I peck the wrong button. Can I count the lost words?) Your photo session makes delightful reading. I giggle at the whole session. Cute, sassy picture, well done. I wish you joy, good luck, and profit at the book signing. Do you sometimes wonder if there's a better way to make a living? But then, you have the drive, the ingenuity, and the talent. Keep on snapping.

  6. Your photo turned out very nice.

    I also did the self-portrait thing and then had some of my kids take turns taking photos until I finally found one I liked (or at least didn't make me feel sick when I looked at it--thank goodness for digital cameras).

    Good luck at the book signing.

  7. Marsha, you are the best! It's a great picture and I loved reading about how it came to be. What fun!

  8. btw...as you can see I found out why I couldn't post comments...Maybe I'll confess some day...hee heee. (It was my fault in case you were wondering.)


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