What I learnt this week: 29th November 2018

The camera never lies…or does it?

When I first started out on this new writing life, I was advised to get a professional head shot. Because I invariably do as I’m told (unless it’s my husband doing the telling) I duly had the photo done, muttering all the while about how ridiculous it was. I was in the business of words, not pictures.

A short while later my first book was published, with a photo of me on the back page. I’d also set myself up on Facebook and Twitter. I now had an Amazon author page, a page dedicated to me on my publishers website. A page on the Romantic Novelists’ Association website. On linked-in. Suddenly images of me were everywhere…okay, okay, I’m not that famous. Still, I couldn’t escape the fact that every time I was invited onto someone’s blog, or to write a piece for an on-line magazine, or had a piece written about me in the local paper (yes, yes, local), it was accompanied by a photo.

Wind forward 5 years (gulp – has it really been five?!) and I decided it was time for an image update. So I approached a local photographer, Amelia from Fresh Shoots, with the brief that I wanted something more relaxed than the formal studio photo I’d been using all these years. A photo that said fiction writer, not medical writer. A photo that was more me.

And she took me to a soggy common.

To be fair, she couldn’t help the weather – but oh my God, the stress of worrying about what the damp air would do to the hair I’d meticuilously ironed straight.

Also to fair, the backdrop of the common was stunning. Yes, she made me sit on the boggy ground, but she did provide her jacket to sit on. And then relaxed me so much I forgot I was there to have my photo taken and started to enjoy just being out in the fresh air and having a chat (we writers don’t get out much, remember).

The results were exactly the look and feel I was after…given that we did actually have to put my face in them.

So thank you Amelia. I now have an image that reflects me. Frizzy hair, soggy bottom and all.

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