Dear Crissy

My first book cover

When you’ve been publishing content and sharing your life for an audience online as long as I have, you leave a pretty extensive trail of digital breadcrumbs. I started my first website in 1996, as a 16-year-old high school student, and have been posting personal writing and photography constantly since that time.

A few months ago, I received an email from a designer who expressed interest in using one of my ancient self-portraits on DeviantArt for an upcoming young adult fiction book from Penguin (Puffin/Speak). This is the original photo, circa 2002.

Self Portrait

I’ve struggled over the years with quite a bit of image theft, but, this particular picture has undoubtedly been my most popular (and most often stolen) image. While I’ve had requests for licensing before, this was the first project that I felt great about from the start. It’s so funny, that while I have images available for licensing on Getty Images, and have grown a decent following on this blog, that one of my old photos on a site I don’t even use anymore caught the eye of someone, somewhere.

Here is what the book looks like (front and back).


How cool is that? The book is called XVI, and was written by author Julia Karr (@juliaakarr on Twitter). Here is a little about the book:

Some girls can’t wait to be sixteen, to be legal. Nina is not one of them. Even though she has no choice in the matter, she knows that so long as her life continues as normal, everything will be okay.

Then, with one brutal strike, Nina’s normal is shattered; and she discovers that nothing that she believed about her life is true. But there’s one boy who can help–and he just may hold the key to her past.

But with the line between attraction and danger as thin as a whisper, one thing is for sure…for Nina, turning sixteen promises to be anything but sweet.

Having not only one of my photos, but a self-portrait on the cover of a book is something that I am really proud of. I am super excited to purchase a copy of XVI in January, and if possible, I’m going to see if I can’t arrange a giveaway when the time comes. Until then, be sure to visit author Julia Karr’s website to learn more about the book

If the book sounds appealing to you, be sure to check your local bookstore after January 6th (yes, 1/6!), or you can preorder from Amazon, B&N, or Borders.

Leave a Comment


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  1. Tara Funair — September 20, 2010 @ 4:14 pm (#)

    That is a spectacular photo and you should be very proud!


    • Dear Crissy — September 20th, 2010 @ 4:59 pm

      Thank you Tara!

  2. @mintaburst — September 20, 2010 @ 4:15 pm (#)

    Looks great Crissy!


    • Dear Crissy — September 20th, 2010 @ 5:00 pm

      Thank you!

  3. Tracey — September 20, 2010 @ 4:18 pm (#)


    I wanted to let you know that I am following you from Moms Blogger Club, "The Simply Follow" group. I am hoping when you get a chance you can follow me back at and Also, I would love to place a link to your site on my blog if you want to do the same with my blog on yours. Please let me know by sending me an email regarding this and it has been nice meeting you via the web.

    Thanks, Tracey
    (a.k.a Britney/ author)


  4. Adrienne — September 20, 2010 @ 4:20 pm (#)

    Congrats! :)


    • Dear Crissy — September 20th, 2010 @ 5:00 pm

      Thank you Adrienne!

  5. Heather — September 20, 2010 @ 4:42 pm (#)

    Very, truly awesome! :)


  6. Thecoffeeqween — September 20, 2010 @ 5:24 pm (#)

    Love it!!


    • Dear Crissy — September 20th, 2010 @ 4:59 pm


  7. @_AnaGuerrero_ — September 20, 2010 @ 5:35 pm (#)

    That's awesome, Crissy! You're so beautiful! Not surprised at all that this was chosen. =) Congratulations girl and may this only be one of the MANY that will be used for book covers. ;)


  8. Danijel Šivinjski — September 20, 2010 @ 5:59 pm (#)

    WOW! Like it, very nice <3


  9. Suzanne — September 20, 2010 @ 5:59 pm (#)

    That's an amazing photo! I'm even more impressed that it's from 2002 – I think I was still taking pictures with film and taking hours to scan then in one at a time back then. In fact, I KNOW I was – my wedding in 2004 was mostly shot on 35mm.


    • Dear Crissy — September 20th, 2010 @ 6:24 pm

      I got my first digital camera in like 1996, a Casio, maybe 1 megapixel and it cost me $300, haha.

  10. Kim - Mommycosm — September 20, 2010 @ 7:44 pm (#)

    New reader here – fellow Jockey ambassador. LOVE this shot. How cool to have it on a book cover now?! Congratulations.


  11. Julia Karr — September 20, 2010 @ 8:32 pm (#)

    Yay! Crissy! I am so in love with my cover! How very cool to see the original photo! I'm so impressed with your photography!


  12. Angela — September 20, 2010 @ 8:42 pm (#)

    WOW! Crissy! Sounds good. Sounds like your pics have made quite an impact on the world. That is a good thing.


  13. Elizabeth Flora Ross — September 20, 2010 @ 10:23 pm (#)

    That is way cool! It looks awesome!


  14. Tonya Crain — September 20, 2010 @ 10:26 pm (#)

    Wow that's so neat! People ill be picturing YOU when their reading about Nina!
    Congratulations :)


  15. Alex@LateEnough — September 20, 2010 @ 10:28 pm (#)

    That's seriously cool! Congrats! A really great shot, too. I should've asked you to leave photo tips for me on Friday!


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you are beautiful. hope to see you soon!