At the risk of seeming a bit pompous, I have always considered the writing of books and feature articles, as well as the photography that gives them depth and color, and the exhibits derived from the expeditions behind the stories, to be a sort of sacred honor. Each published work, each photographic exhibit is another opportunity to provide five minutes of fame to an obscure figure that changed our world through innovation or inspiration, to instill a hunger for knowledge or a road trip, or to inspire a future photographer or author.
In the writing of my first book, a profile of the Checker Cab Manufacturing Company, I pulled aside the cobwebs and cast aside the shadows that obscured one of the most interesting stories in American automotive history. I was also able to bring Morris Markin, an impoverished Russian immigrant that epitomized the American rags to riches saga, from the darkness of obscurity even if it was for but a brief moment.
As is often the case, the book was merely a foundational element in bringing this story to light. Built upon this endeavor was an article written for Hemmings Classic Car, and, almost a decade later, an interview with Jay Leno. At the bottom of this column is a link for the video of that interview.
It was in the writing of a monthly column, The Independent Thinker, for Cars & Parts, that I was able to bring an entire cast and ensemble from the shadows and into the lime light. Each month was a voyage of discovery, for me as well as the reader, as I told the story of Ralph Teetor, the blind inventor of cruise control, Francis and Freeland Stanley, the brothers behind the famous steamer and the prolific inventors that laid the foundation for Eastman Kodak, and countless others that transformed the world with their contributions to the development of the American auto industry. 
In recent years, the majority of my work has been focused on the forgotten and empty places, and the road less traveled. In Ghost Towns of the Southwest, I nudged Tombstone from center stage with the telling of the tale about Lake Valley, a town founded on a silver discovery so rich miners lamps were used to melt the silver from the walls of a cavern, and Shakespeare, a town founded on lies and hoaxes.
This book also awarded me the unique opportunity for broadening the scope of focus on the history of the southwest. I accomplished through the telling of stories about cities such as Gran Quivira, a modern metropolis before the arrival of the Spanish conquistador, and the towns established by the colonists that followed them.
It is my writings, and related photography, about Route 66 that has provided the greatest opportunities for adding depth and context to a popular subject, and for providing promotional opportunities for those individuals along the highway that keep its culture alive and flourishing. As a result, it is these endeavors that have provided the greatest satisfaction, and that have served as endless opportunities for meeting some of the most amazing people of the modern era.
Now, on the cusp of a new year, I am about to embark on the greatest promotional adventure yet undertaken. Would you care to join me?
First, if you have a small business, or you are the curator of museum on Route 66, and it would be of promotional value to have me stop by on our tours this year please let me know. And if you would like a really unique promotion for your business, we are still looking for a few sponsors for the Route 66 tour that kicks off in October at Cuba Fest in Cuba, Missouri with the launch of our latest book, a Route 66 encyclopedia and atlas. 
If you would like to join us on our Route 66 adventures and cruise all or part of this storied highway, drop me a note or check the schedule page for updates. This iconic old road is truly perfect for those who love cruising in time capsule style, as well as for those who prefer something a bit more modern, or in their own creations.
We will kick off the new year, if my dearest friend and I can shake our colds, with a trip to Amboy and the climbing of the crater. Along the way we will photograph the segment of road from Oatman to the Colorado River, with emphasis on the natural beauty of the wildlife refuge, this will be for the Route 66 in Mohave County exhibit being developed for the Powershouse Visitor Center.
The exhibit will officially open in July. However, it will be opened in stages with the first segment going on display in about March.
Pending jury duty in Prescott during the first week in February has necessitated putting a few of the things I fill my weekends with on hold. Still, arrangements are being made for me to be at Book Works in Albuquerque on February 25.
Also on the schedule for 2012 – the Route 66 Fun Run in May, the big events in Tucumcari tied to the New Mexico Mother, the international Route 66 festival in Victorville in August, and, of course Cuba Fest in Cuba at the end of October. As the schedule fills, I will provide updates.