Becca wanted her author photos to be different, so, she thought of me. I had photographed her on her wedding day, and we've kept in touch and watched each other grow.
First, the photos had to be outdoors because the forest is such an important part of her and her writing.
Secondly, when she looked at other author photos, she noticed that all the men were looking straight at the camera, " fierce and confident," while the women were looking away wistfully. She told me she didn't want to apologize for her writing or who she was. She wanted to make sure she looked straight at the lens.
I was nodding so enthusiastically on the phone at this point that my neck started to cramp.
Forest. Magic Realism. Powerful women. Got it.
We spent the afternoon playing and collaborating on ideas. I would throw out a mood or an idea and she would share a scene from the book that happened to resonate with it. And at one point, an eagle circled over us and we watched her for a long while before leaving. We walked out of the forest, along a dirt road, listening to bluegrass.
The book is called Rock of Ages. Here's the official summary: An LA transplant struggles over whether to return to rural Appalachia. A feisty rule breaker, her abuelita and a little bit of magic help her understand the meaning of home.