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Wet Noodle Posse | Blog

Wednesday, April 19, 2006

Writers Wanted. Must Be Beautiful. – Kiki Clark

I’m going to see a plastic surgeon today, to talk about the possibility of scar revision. It must have been two years ago that I asked my dermatologist to biopsy an area on my nose. He couldn’t see anything wrong, but the biopsy came back with a diagnosis of basal-cell carcinoma. I was recommended to another dermatologist, then poached by his referred plastic surgeon, who recommended an experimental procedure used to fix cataracts in cows’ eyes. To make a long story short, he microwaved my nose and left a pretty big scar.

Since then, I’ve had dermabrasion, discovered the joys of Physician’s Formula green concealer and camouflage make-up, and found that guys still flirt with me. But there’s still a scar smack in the middle of my face, and I’d prefer not to be known as that woman with the divot out of her nose.

Recently, one of the Noodlers pointed out a blog where a literary agent was extolling the virtues of a good-looking, highly promotable client. Someone whose smiling face looks good beside the book cover as Oprah points to it. Don’t see an author photo? That’s because the writer is a dog, this agent said.

You’d think, as writers, it wouldn’t matter what we look like. But with the merger of publishing and Hollywood, oh, it does. It’s not just about the words anymore. Who wrote the words? Did she have a scandalous youth that will make people want to know about her and buy her book? How about an illegal baby, a past drug problem, an affair with royalty? Is she young and sexy?

Ideally, I should be blonde, big-breasted and 25, with a fistful of dirty letters from Prince William and adoption papers that show Donald Trump as my biological father. I should have written a novel that’s a thinly veiled autobiography of my time in Saddam Hussein’s harem, and have a birthmark that's identical to one on Angelina Jolie’s butt, although mysteriously, we have never met. My book would then sell a million copies, the drug problem would come back, providing tabloid pictures of me, my goony face draped over the shoulders of Italian male models while one nipple accidentally peeks out of my $2,375 tank top. Cue the massive weight gain, becoming poster girl for a successful diet program, followed by a newly svelte and humble author, earning stars on her crown by saving baby tigers that are somehow exploited in Thailand’s sex trade, although there is certainly no penetration.

Whew. It’s a miracle I had time to write a good book.

So I made sure this surgeon is the real deal, with plenty of published papers and an office in Beverly Hills in addition to my major metropolitan area. Maybe I'll get a quote on big breasts while I'm there. It occurs to me that if I got three instead of the usual two, there'd be a book in it.


At 1:43 PM, Blogger Colleen Gleason said...

LOL! Esri, as usual, you are so witty and fine. And I think you're gorgeous even with the divot in your nose!

At 2:14 PM, Blogger bridget said...

BAHAHAHA! Esri, you are queen of quirk! And beautiful, so nix on breast #3. You've already got a story.

At 7:44 PM, Blogger Kiki, aka Esri said...

I'm back from my consultation. He said there was nothing he could do that wouldn't make it look worse. But I'll tell you, it was worth the $150 consultation fee to have the gal who takes the photograph squint at my face and say, "I'm not exactly sure what you're talking about. You're going to have to point it out to me." After going through the bandages, the huge scab, and then the dermabrasion, I really had no sense of how obvious it was. People had definitely stared when I had the bandage on, and also when the bandage came off but the scar was still fresh. So even now, I can never tell why people might look at me a little longer than usual. It messes with your head.

The doc said if I want to have it not to show when I'm not wearing makeup, I could have the whiter scar tissue tattooed a little pink, and if I want the slight depression gone (at least temporarily), I could have some stuff injected under it. I might do the tattoo thing.

Oh, and the office was totally like George Hamilton's office in "Doc Hollywood." There weren't naked women pressing themselves against frosted glass, but there was a life-size ballerina statue, full color, looking in a mirror. And a private room for EVERYTHING, including filling out your forms. I guess you might not want people to know you'd had something done. Me, I'd wear a sign: "Ask me about my plastic surgeon!"

At 8:17 PM, Blogger Diane Perkins said...

I am so vain, I would have been crushed to have any sort of disfigurement on my face. I'm freaking out about brown age spots and I spent $30 for some sure-fire way to fade them.
No luck yet....

At 10:47 PM, Blogger Kiki, aka Esri said...

I feel your vain, Diane. And yes, it was crushing. It seems to get better every year, however, so maybe eventually it will disappear altogether.

Oh, and I'm sorry to tell you that there's no cream that will fade your age spots. Take it from a former esthetician. Get a pet dermatologist and have him lightly freeze them. That's the only way.

At 11:30 PM, Blogger Jennie Lucas said...

Esri, this is so hilarious!

I confess, when I read that agent's blog about beautiful writers, it gave me a little bit of a fearful pang, too. Yeccch!! Oh well, the first priority is to write a good book ... marketing will come later. I can always diet then. (Yeah, right.)

Esri, I remember your skin as being perfect, but WTG on finding a top plastic surgeon to assuage your worries. (Still can't believe that "experimental" surgeon ... ugh.) The clinic sounds very pampering, like a trip to the day spa. This morning on the Today show they had a segment on (I think that was it)-- fly to Rio and get a low-cost boob job, along with beachfront accommodations and a tour of the city! Plus free samba lessons!

Sad to say, in my homebound state it looked pretty appealing. In a "have you lost your mind?" kind of way. But c'mon, free samba lessons! In Rio!!! (Maybe they'd throw in that extra boob, too!)

At 9:24 AM, Blogger Kiki, aka Esri said...

Jenna, I don't think you have any looks issues. You *own* cute, honey.

After talking to the guy yesterday about how bad skin grafts look, I'm regarding the microwave guy a little more kindly. Although we probably could have gotten better results with a cream. I don't know if the same creams were available then, however.

At 9:26 AM, Blogger Kiki, aka Esri said...

And I forgot to say, how funny about the Rio/boob/sambo stuff! That's book material, that is. I'm thinking murder mystery... The accidental third boob, the screaming upon coming out of the anesthetic... the stiletto heel through the heart during a tricky dance move...

At 9:28 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

See? I was right. It's unnoticeable unless you point it out, and you look great- as always. But I understand needing the professional opinion. Friends and family can't always be trusted to give you the unvarnished truth about things like that.

At 8:00 AM, Blogger Tori Scott said...

I think one advantage of turning 50 is that you can finally be happy with who you are. Yeah, I'd like to lose some weight, but my world no longer revolves around it. At 50, you finally get the attitude that if someone doesn't like you because of how you look, they weren't worth knowing anyway. And I'd have to say the same for editors and publishing houses. If they base buying my book on whether or not I'm a gorgeous 20 something--I don't think I'd want them for a publisher.

At 10:08 AM, Blogger Trish Milburn said...

I think we always see our physical "faults" as much bigger than they are, so I'm not surprised by the surgeon's response. You're gorgeous, darlin'. :)


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