Preliminary sketches for The Day-Glo Brothers arrived yesterday!

Let me put this development into chronological context: I first learned of the Switzer brothers’ story in 1997, began researching and writing it in 2001, sold the manuscript to Charlesbridge in 2004, and submitted the final version in 2005. I have waited a long, long time to see what the images that would be joined with my words would look like, so it was a huge thrill to pull the pages from that big, brown envelope yesterday afternoon.

As soon as they arrived, my wife and I looked at them together at the dining room table — I think she was just as excited as I was. I hadn’t expected the sketches to be laid out on pages with the text, but there it all was. Even in this rough form, the artist‘s sketches go a long way toward making this science-filled story much more palatable for those not so scientifically inclined, just as I’d hoped they would.

One unexpected result of the sketches’ arrival is that the author’s dedication is no longer the secret I’d planned for it to be.

“Hey, I saw my name,” my wife said as I hurried past the page I hadn’t intended for her to see.

“No, you didn’t.”

But yes, of course, she had, and so I let her read the whole thing. It pleased her — just as I’d hoped it would.