Do you want to make sure people pick up your next book and read it?
Of course, you do! So you should do everything in your power to intrigue people when they flip through your book for the first time.
You can obviously start by writing a great book that’s worth reading. You can also choose a cover for your book that catches people’s eyes. And finally, you can include a headshot in your book that lets people know who you are.
Author photographs are actually a lot more important to readers than writers might realize. A great one can entice a person to pick up your book and give it a chance, while a bad one can make them put your book down and move on to the next option.
Here is how Plano, Texas authors can take a great headshot that’ll win readers over.
Hire a Professional Photographer to Take Your Headshots
In 2018, you might be tempted to forgo the services of a professional photographer in favor of asking a friend to use their smartphone to snap author photographs of you.
Do not do this!
While your friend might be able to take a photo of you that would look great on Facebook or Instagram, it’s highly unlikely that they’re going to capture something good enough to use as your professional headshot.
A professional photographer will do more than just take your headshot. They’ll make sure the lighting is right for it and help you pose for it. They’ll also Photoshop your headshot later to produce the best possible headshot for your book.
Talk With Your Photographer About the Tone of Your Book
Did you just finish up an amazing novel about a serial killer who terrorizes the country? Chances are, you don’t want to include a headshot in your book that features you with a big old smile on your face!
Likewise, you probably don’t want to include a super serious headshot that makes you look like a stiff college professor if you just got done writing a silly book that has the potential to get turned into the next great rom-com one day.
Your author photographs should always match the tone of your book. Speak with your professional photographer about your tone so that they can pose you accordingly for your pictures and provide you with some different options.
Figure Out a Way to Capture a Moment With Your Author’s Photos
The best author photographs are the ones that seem to tell a story to readers when they see them.
That doesn’t mean that you need to be doing some kind of activity in your photo for it to intrigue your readers. But it should capture some kind of emotion and bring readers into your world for just a second so that they can decide if they want to read your book.
If you specialize in writing, say, erotic thrillers, your author photographs should convey it in some way. A great professional photographer can take a bunch of photos of you and find the one that captures a specific moment that encapsulates what you’re all about.
Make Sure Your Face Is the Focal Point of Your Photos
This should really go without saying. But you might be surprised by how many writers attempt to remain mysterious by including something other than a headshot in their book.
Some will take photos that only feature a small sliver of their face. Others will capture shots that include a shot of their hand, shoe, or some other object entirely.
This might work for a small percentage of authors. But generally speaking, a professional headshot will take you a lot further than an abstract photo that leaves readers wondering what you’re trying to hide.
Relax During Your Photo Shoot and Try to Act Natural
There are a lot of authors who have absolutely no interest in being in front of a camera at any point. They make their living sitting at computers typing words and don’t mind being behind-the-scenes for the most part.
There’s nothing wrong with this. But your author photographs are the one time you should try to put yourself out there and allow people to see who you are.
To that end, make an attempt to relax during your photo shoot. If you’re tense or nervous, it’s going to show in your photos. People aren’t going to see the real you when they look at them.
An easy way to do this is to simply have your professional photographer take a lot of different photos of you. You might look nervous in some of the early ones. But by the end of your photo shoot, you’re going to get used to being in front of the camera and act more natural.
Taking this approach will lead to better author photographs overall.
Ask Your Photographer to Send You Hi-Res Headshot Images
After your photo shoot is finished, your professional photographer will go back to their lab, upload your photos, and work on touching the best ones up.
They’ll then send you some options to choose from and let you decide which author photographs you like best. See which ones you like the most and ask others in your life to take a look at them, too.
Once you know which photos you want to use, ask your photographer to send you hi-resolution images. This will allow you to use your author photographs in books and magazines, on your website, and for publicity purposes.
Your Author Photographs Could Make or Break Your Next Book
When you’re armed with great author photographs, it can make all the difference in the world as far as book sales go. More people are going to pick up your book and take it home with them if they like your headshots.
By working with a professional photographer, you can get the best headshots possible for your book. You can also enjoy a more pleasant experience when taking photos for your book.