Peru, IN 2004

This was the first event I did back in my hometown, a signing at the Miami County Historical Museum. I was very nervous.

You try writing a book about your hometown and see how it feels to go back. It’s nerve wracking.

Would anyone show up? I had no idea.

Remember, this was before Facebook and EventBrite and Twitter and all that. I didn’t have a blog. All I could really do was email people back then.


  • my mom had sent a postcard to every member of her graduating class
  • the local paper did a story
  • it’s a small town, so everyone told everyone, especially my grandma.

Over 200 people came. I sold so many books. No one was angry. Everyone just seemed so happy and surprised that someone would write a book about this place.

In this picture, I’m talking to Kathy, an old friend of my mom’s. In the background is Cole Porter’s Cadillac.