The real answer (much like all real answers) is a bit more complicated, though. See, I used to. If you’re one of the dozen or so people who picked up the original paperback of Bigfoot Hunters, you may have noticed my smiling mug creepily leering at you from the back cover...assuming you didn't think someone had perhaps shaved one of the titular monsters and put it back there as a cruel joke to society. It’s okay if you did. I often have to wear a sign whenever I visit the Bronx Zoo that reads “Not an exhibit!” I’m used to these sorts of things.
Anyhow, I didn't leave it there for long. When next I revised the cover, gone was my grinning visage. In its place I left a dark vortex of mystery in which you, the reader, can use your imagination to consider what foul creatures might be lurking there...or in other words, some blank space. Hey, I never claimed to be a master of graphic design.
This is partially because of what I mentioned above. The other part is a bit more - disturbing. See, in a bid to get people to stop laughing whenever I pathetically mewled, “Hey, I wrote a book!” in a desperate cry for attention (daddy, why didn't you love me!?), I handed out a few paperbacks I had lying around. I figured that at minimum I’d get a few, “Fine, you wrote a book. Do you want a medal?” replies.
Much to my joy, though, one of my friends told me a few weeks later that he’d started Bigfoot Hunters and was impressed. He said it was great bathroom reading. Oh well, not quite the set of Masterpiece Theater, but as long as he was enjoying it...
But he didn't stop there. He had to also point out that there was one little bit of weirdness for him. To paraphrase, “I noticed your picture on the back cover. So while I’m reading, it’s kind of like you’re there staring at my junk while I take a shit.”
And that was the beginning of the end for me. Much like a bad song, his words stuck in my mind - repeating themselves over and over again, to the point where I would have gladly replaced them with a lifetime of Justin Bieber music playing in my skull (well maybe not going that far).
Even worse I had to consider the old concept, supposedly held by primitive peoples around the world, of photos stealing one’s soul. What if that were true? What if every book I sold contained a little piece of me on the back cover...a little piece that was forever doomed to watch people poop?
Alas, I couldn't take that chance...even for those parts of my soul that are kind of assholes and probably deserve it. Thus I chose to remove my photo to save myself from such a fate as well as spare you, dear reader, from having my disembodied head staring at you while your pants are down. You’re welcome.
Of course this doesn't save you from the countless other tomes you might have lying around. Me either, now that I think of it. Great! Now I’m gonna have to take duct tape to ALL of my paperbacks...especially those ones by Dean Koontz in his porno-stache phase (shudder).
Yeah, I think I’m gonna stick to ebooks too from now on...