Look what came in the mail today — my first box of advance hardcover copies of The Day-Glo Brothers!

As long as I’ve been waiting for these (eight years, but who’s counting?), you’d think that I’d already know exactly who I plan to parcel these out to. And while I’ve got some idea (mom, agent, family members of subjects Bob and Joe Switzer), I still feel somewhat caught off-guard and prone to surprise by the possible recipients that are popping into my head.

We were eating dinner when I suddenly thought of my neighbor, who applied her photographic talents to the picture that graces the pages of my website. So, in the immediate aftermath of a hailstorm, all four of us Bartons headed down the street to present the first free copy. (And to return some kitchen linens that accompanied a pie we recently received; if this fact inspires anyone to try to buy a copy with pie, they’re certainly welcome to try.)

I now have a big stack of mailing envelopes on my desk, one of which will whisk a copy away to a woman who was a key contributor to my earliest research efforts for this book. As I recall, I spoke to her only one time, but I still remember her asking me to send her a copy of my book. I suspect she’s forgotten our conversation, and I can’t wait to jog her memory.