Author Photo Smackdown! 

AuthorPhotoSmackdownjpg

Hey, it's Author Photo Smackdown!, our inaugural look at the semiotics of author photos in which we translate exactly what our favorite contemporary writers are trying to say in their book-jacket portraits.

Contestant A
"I sought no advance for my novel. Rather, its creation was subsidized by a series of middle-aged men who paid me to dictate chapters to them while grinding the heels of my knee-high lace-up leather boots into their naked backs.

Contestant B
Whenever I print out a draft the first thing I do is read it aloud. For big projects I'll call up Mom and read it to her over the phone, but for shorter pieces I like to pretend that I'm giving a reading and my three cats are the audience."

To place your vote for which author you'd rather read (and to guess the identities of the authors) send an email to smackdown@thelmagazine.com, and you could win big prizes. BIG PRIZES. (This would also be an appropriate email to send angry letters about the cheap and obvious way in which we are diminishing the fine and venerable art of literature.)

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