I think this article at Philly.com, why discussing the Hasselbeck diet book and perhaps plagarism, instead points out an interesting concept in the publishing industry. Do we really care that our books are written by attractive people?
I agree with his statement,
“It’s why every celeb and pseudo-celeb has a biography or life philosophy on the shelves.”
That’s obviously true, but most have their 15 minutes of fame, and they are re-cycled, sold at library booksales and tossed to the curb. Does anyone that reads regularly, not a one off reader, seriously care what the author looks like? I’ll buy him/her again if I liked the first one, but do I hold up the back cover, or back inside and say, Yuck, that’s an ugly mug, I’ll find someone cuter to read.
If the publishing industry is deciding on titles by the looks/personality of the author then no wonder they’re in serious trouble. Then I happened on this article about Jane Austen at the New York Times. So a British publisher photoshopped her, how strange is that. Does anyone who loves to read Jane Austen care? Would people like her books more if she looked like Kate Winslet or Emma Thompson or even Uma Thurman?
Stephen King is no looker, except perhaps to Mrs. King. I mean no disrespect, but most of us just look like an un-photoshopped image of ourselves. I’ve seen it estimated he has sold over 350 million copies of his works. So I doubt if he worries if he is the best looking author on the Bestseller lists.
Surely readers aren’t so shallow that they pick their books by the looks of the author. If we do then we’re in big trouble.