I hate having my picture taken. Honestly. I’m not one to complain and then take pictures anyway. No, I really hate pictures and won’t take them unless I have to– like family has requested I stay put or I’m in a group shot. In a way, I hate that about myself because I know I’m being silly. There is nothing wrong with taking a photo, and I don’t need to look like a model to have someone like my picture. Still, I find them painful. I suppose it’s my own sort of irrational fear? Only, it’s not really a fear so much as an intense dislike that honestly, even now, makes me tear up a bit. (I’m so dramatic.)

So this weekend, my niece and I headed out to get her senior portrait. It was just the two of us. She wanted a simple portrait by the “river.” I had known about it for a week, so I tried to psych myself up to take portraits as well while we were out there. I hadn’t said anything to my niece about it (probably wanting to give myself an out), but she brought it up in the car so I had to go through with it.

Not surprisingly, all my pictures came out awful. Even my niece couldn’t lie. She was nice about it, and there were some pictures that weren’t that bad, but they weren’t exactly good. I knew they were coming, and I tensed up each time. She had me look away from the camera, and I still felt uncomfortable. So her solution? She snapped a shot of me on the sly with her ipod.

So that’s how it happened. I got my “author picture.” I’ve been honest before about how I’ve taken myself out of the marketing of my book and I’m instead focusing on the story and that world. (At least what little marketing I’ve done.) Mostly because I’m so uncomfortable with images of myself.

There is no one size fits all to marketing or managing a career. I’m not really telling you all this so much as reminding myself, something I find helpful from time to time.