The Gift Economy

Here we go.

It’s time.

I’ve been thinking about this for a little more than a year—taking some of the books I’ve written, putting them into attractive paperback versions, and then giving them away. For free.

It’s a fun process to take a story that’s lived its whole life in an anodyne Microsoft Word document and to give it physical form. To make it into a book. To make the hundred decisions about typeface and margins, about chapter headings and section dividers, about cover images and cover text, that every book requires. To design the graphic device (the publisher’s mark, which you can see at the top of this post) for Spruce Knob Press, which isn’t really a business, it’s just me making some books.

It’s also been fun to NOT make some decisions. My books don’t have ISBN numbers or barcodes. They don’t have e-book editions, or links to Amazon. They don’t have a price, or a link to a Square or Venmo or PayPal checkout. They’re simply gifts.

You’re welcome.

So now it’s your turn. Visit the “Books for Free” tab of my website to see a brief description of the six books that are currently available. Choose one. (We’re operating under the Thanksgiving-dinner model here: take only one. If you like it, you can always go back for seconds.) Get me your U.S. mailing address—by email if you know my email address, through the “Keep in Touch” tab of my website, or through the Messaging feature of LinkedIn if you saw this on that site. And I’ll put a book into the mail for you. It really is that easy. If I run out of one, I’ll get more made in a week or ten days, so don’t worry about that. (As Jay Leno once said on behalf of Doritos, “Go ahead, we’ll make more.”)

I’ll look forward to sharing stories with you. Thanks for all of your support and encouragement along the way. I hope you’ll enjoy them.

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