Clichés to the contrary, we do judge books by their covers. Recently, I found myself wondering whether anyone ever decided not to read a book because they didn’t like the way the author looked. (As if we writers aren’t insecure enough!)

Headshot History

My first author photo was more of a ‘glamour’ shot. In the next I looked like the ‘mom’ I was (and still am.) I love my most recent photo but I’ve been using it for a while, and I’ve started to worry that when I show up for a book event no one will recognize me. (Unfortunately, professional hair, makeup, and airbrushing aren’t a part of my daily routine.

The Beach Beckons

Given what I write, a more casual photo felt like a good idea. A beach photo felt even better. It didn’t take me long to choose St. Pete Beach, where I grew up and where a number of my Ten Beach Road novels are set. Life intervened. Years went by. Then my editor told me that if I wanted a new photo on the cover of my April novel,

One Good Thing, I’d better get on it.

If there’s anything a writer understands it’s a deadline. So, I found a photographer, scheduled the shoot, and drove down to Florida watching my weather app for eight plus hours and trying not to panic. The day we decided not to shoot was gorgeous. The day we chose was not.

Nonetheless, the makeup artist arrived at 6:00am. We were on location in time for a 7:25am sunrise that was a little short on sun. Despite dark clouds and several small but determined rain showers the photo shoot went on. (You can see the shoot slideshow below.)

I Couldn’t Decide

The crazy thing is, I liked so many of the photos that I had a hard time choosing which one to put on the cover. I asked for help and well over a thousand people responded. 

The vote was extremely close, but this is the photo that will appear on the cover!

Thanks to everyone who helped me choose a new author photo for the cover of my next Ten Beach Road novel, One Good Thing! Congrats to advance reading copy winners Linda Bradigan, Esther Somorai, Kathy Sim, Renee Bastian, Stephen Wagner, Michelle Haxton, Stacy Berndt, Liza O’Neal, Marie Simmons and Evelina Ho.

Your advance reading copy of One Good Thing will be sent out soon!

The Winning Photo!

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Photo Shoot Slideshow

(Click on a photo for the full slideshow experience!)

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