It is with great pleasure (and no small sigh) that I welcome a special guest to ReganBlack.com today! Romance novel cover model, author, fitness expert, and all around great guy, Jason Baca, is here today! He’s graciously answered a few of my questions plus a few questions posed by readers. But the best news is he will stop by the blog today and chat with those who leave comments and one lucky commenter will will a signed photo of Jason!
RB: Would you please give us a quick overview of how you started gracing the covers of romance novels?
Jason: Sure, well I’d been doing fashion,fitness and ad modeling for 10 + yrs and was basically at the end of my career with it all. Then I walked into a bookstore and had seen a romance novel on the corner of my eye as I had been walking toward the sports section. It stopped me dead in my tracks and was drawn to it like a magnet on steel.
I went, picked up the book and looked at the guy on the cover. He looked just like me only I felt I was slightly better looking with a better body. It was at that very moment that I had decided to become a romance novel cover model. That spark is where it all began.
RB: Well I know several authors and more readers glad for that spark. Your covers are wonderful. Do you ever travel for photo shoots? If so, what’s been your favorite spot or setting?
Jason: Yes, there are shoots all over. LA often, San Francisco. My favorite was this one I did recently out in Modesto,CA which is a sleepy town out in the middle of nowhere. The people talk about fishing and simple things out there. Its not all business which I like. It’s easy living. My favorite setting though is in a warm studio. Outdoor stuff attracts a lot of on lookers which can be uncomfortable.
RB: These days it seems everyone is urged into multi-tasking and looking ahead to ‘the next thing’. I find your ability to focus a refreshing counterbalance to that attitude. If you ever struggle with distractions, how do you overcome them?
Jason: I try to see myself from a distance or from others perspectives. I disassociate from my body and see how I’m doing. I see what roads need paving and what I’ve exceled at. It’s very easy to get caught up in all sorts of things from personal problems to those being unhappy with your actions and can sometimes hold you back. The successful ones know how to push that stuff aside.
RB: Around here, I often encourage others to find their unique strengths and then use them, because everyone has some sort of gift or talent. What has your experience in cover modeling taught you about yourself and your unique personal strengths?
Jason: Great question! This has all taught me to NEVER listen to someone elses opinion on how your outlook should be on life. Before I ever began modeling I remember telling a close friend that I wanted to be a model. He said, “No man you can’t do that. Just do a normal job like normal people do.” I sat and thought about that one and almost “listened” to his advice.
But then after I went with what I wanted to do and became successful at it he “never recalls” saying to me that I could never do modeling. He changed his tone and said that I was a natural. With romance novel covers and being on them it has taught me that if you believe in yourself and want something bad enough, you’ll get your wishes..
RB: Can you share something you’ve found particularly surprising about the modeling industry?
Jason: Yes, that there are a whole variety of different types of models. When I started modeling I didn’t know this. I just thought a model was a male or female that was suppose to do ANY type of modeling. I also thought that in order to be a model you had to be able to do all these different crazy whacky facial expressions. That is only true for ad modeling. There are “expressionless” models which is right up my alley. Sure I can smile and have for several shoots but this confident serious attitude was what appealed to me most.
RB: If an independent author has a specific pose they’d like to see you in, is there a way they can request it? And where can authors go to find poses you’ve already done?
Jason: It’s very simple, if they have a pose they’d like to see me in they can email this website and tell them or send in a photo of what they want. Authors can purchase premade covers or find an unused stock photo from the database as well. It’s all located here: http://www.theauthorsredroom.com/cover-model-jason-baca-bares-it-all/
RB: If a publisher wants to hire you for a novel, where can they book you?
Jason: They’d have to book my through my management which is Halvorson Model Mgmt. http://www.hmmodels.com/model.asp?modelID=395
Now, here are a few questions readers sent in:
Do you attend reader or author conferences to help promote your cover modeling career?
Jason: No but I’m tempted to go to the RT conference next season in Kansas. I have a very shy personality so attending those may be a bit overwhelming for me.
If you could live anywhere where would it be?
Jason – I love this question! I would live on the Oregon Coast. It is untouched beauty at its finest. I drove through there on a vacation with my friends family back in 8th grade and dreamed of it ever since. I love everything about Oregon and its very peaceful with all the lush forests, streams, and crystal clear air that you breath in. If I was there now I’d just keep taking big breaths in!
How does it feel knowing readers equate your image with the heroes inside the books?
Jason – I think it makes me feel quite special that is for sure. To be the main character on the cover of a novel is rewarding. It means you are that hero, you are the one they will imagine as the book is being unraveled in their minds. What an elated feeling I get when I see myself on them.
Thanks so much for being here today, Jason! It was a pleasure getting to know you!
Readers, be sure to leave a comment for Jason and give him a warm welcome for being here today!
Remember, one lucky commenter will win a signed photo of Jason! (what a treat!!!)
Live the adventure!