Judging a book by its cover when there is none

cereal  This is what a collector’s box of cereal looks like. The picture doesn’t do it justice, there is spot varnish on the Superman logo and texture on the blue of the uniform. I confess I was seduced into buying, of course, I do love caramel.

 

  itphotocopied story

In grade three, this is what a homework assignment story looks like.

BrucetLyndleyphotocopy

 Studies show more children are reading, less are liking it.  From a publishing,writing, designing, illustrating point of view, there is no longer a payback for producing educational materials. Due to bill C11, “fair dealing exemption”, the school can use this unattractive copy of a retold illustrated folktale over and over again for free.

Jobs lost, eventually no material produced.

But from an aesthetics point of view, wouldn’t you rather read a cereal box?

How do you judge a book when you don’t even get a cover?

The Dreaded Author Photo and Bio

Not every animal is content to just gaze soulfully into the camera lens.

Not every animal is content to just gaze soulfully into the camera lens.

A writer needs to get out into the world in order to be able to write. It’s a conundrum. Not only do you need something to write about but you need money to live on and just as for rock stars, the touring pays the bills, not the records/books. (records? CDs? Downloads? exactly the point)

We’re excited to be invited somewhere. A chance to connect with new readers! It may involve a hotel stay, free dinners out, socializing with peers and meeting their new works.

But then the request comes. Could you send a CV, 50/100/300 word bio along with a photograph, a headshot of something, something dpi?

Maybe other writers get away with a one stop kind of bio but for me it’s a dreaded writing job. I have to insert the newest book information into my never changing history and make myself appealing to an audience.

The photograph can be another huge chore. To be sexist, it’s more of job for a female writer as makeup and hairstyling can be considered benchmarks of good grooming and that’s usually not our thing. And head shots are boring! I want to be seen in action. What action? Sitting on a couch curled up with a laptop?

No!

I want to be seen more as one of my heroines. Younger and more colourful
Or doing active research for my story. Only with makeup and a fresh hairstyle.
Or surrounded by tons of reverential readers.

To amuse you here are a couple of shots in an effort to accompany a dog walking mystery. The story was inspired by dog sitting for my granddog Worf, a powerful horse of a canine, alongside my own Jackapoo Mortie, a hyperactive, hyper barking teacup.

Inspiration for a dog walking mystery series, the Pong and Ping characters behaving for a brief moment.

Inspiration for a dog walking mystery series, the Pong and Ping characters behaving for a brief moment.