Dirty Laundry

Can You Recognize My Face?

Regular followers of my blog know what a huge Apple fan I am. I switched over six years ago and have never looked back. I can’t recommend their products highly enough. iPhones, iPads, iPods, iMacs, iLife, iWork. If it starts with an i I probably have owned it and loved it.

As regular followers of my blog also know, I have been dabbling in photography of late. If you are a user of iPhoto, then you know that the incredibly talented people at Apple have designed a facial recognition software to help sort your photos. And so, just today I was using the software to find pictures of me (not because I’m so incredibly vain, but because I need to send a headshot to one of the writing festivals I will be doing next month).

For the most part, the software worked very well. I’d say it got 90% of the pictures correct.

But it’s the other 10% that iPhoto pegged as me that I was a little concerned about.

Take a look at the photos below and tell me if you think this software needs a little tweaking. I’ll start off with an actual photo of myself for comparison.

This is me.


Not me, and not even close, I don’t think (though, this was the least offensive “match”)


Apparently, I bear a striking resemblance to a wax Judi Dench


Also, a wax Orlando Bloom (honestly, even I have to say I look more like Judi than Orlando)


This one really stumped me. Maybe it’s the beard, but I don’t think I look so stony.


And finally, I know that there are those who say some people look like their dogs, but come on now, is this really a match?


Amazing Audiobooks!

Just got word that both SWIM THE FLY and BEAT THE BAND have made it onto the American Library Association’s list of Amazing Audiobooks for 2011.

I have to thank Nick Podehl for his extraordinary performances as well as Brilliance Audio for choosing Nick to read the books.

I happen to love audiobooks for a number of reasons. I am a notoriously slow reader and so listening to audiobooks allows me to catch up on titles I’ve been dying to get to while I exercise or drive in the car. There’s also something comforting about listening to a good performer read you a story. Sort of like bedtime stories when I was a kid.

I am also aware how important audiobooks are to people who struggle with reading, such as my stepson who has dyslexia, as well as a good friend of my family, who was blind and who listened to “talking books” on LPs over thirty years ago.

And so, I am very grateful to Brilliance Audio for releasing my titles in audiobook form so that even more people can enjoy the stories.

Now, onto more pressing matters. Did any of you watch the Golden Globes last night? I have to say that I absolutely LOVED Ricky Gervais as the host. I know that he has stirred up quite a controversy over the things he said about the stars of the evening and the Hollywood Foreign Press. But honestly, I couldn’t wait for him to get back on the stage. It was the most fun I’ve had watching an awards show in many years. And sure, maybe some of the comments weren’t in the “best taste.” But I was thoroughly entertained. Sometimes I think people take themselves far too seriously. Anyway, if you missed it I’m sure it will pop up on YouTube in the next few days. Definitely check it out.

And now, back to the page (because my editor would want it that way).

ALA Best Fiction For Young Adults

Every year the American Library Association (ALA) puts out a list of the Best Fiction for Young Adults. It’s a very exclusive club. Only 99 books (from the thousands that were published throughout the year) made the list.

And guess what book made the list this year.

That’s right, our very own BEAT THE BAND has been chosen as one of the Best Fiction for Young Adults titles this year and I couldn’t be more excited.

I think I’ll just leave it at that.

Oh, and here’s a link in case you want to see what other books made the cut: ALA Best Fiction For Young Adults