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Just in time for Christmas … well, almost

I’ve written my name in books before — but always as a reminder to other people to keep their grubby paws off of them, or at least return them when they’re done.

But yesterday was a first: I signed my own book — own, as in the one I wrote.

I don’t get mail delivery here in Petite Acres, the trailer park in Cave Creek, Arizona, where Ace and I are spending December before heading back east in the last leg of our seven months of travels.

So when my publisher called to find out where to send the author’s copies of “DOG, INC.: The Uncanny Inside Story of Cloning Man’s Best Friend,” I used my brother’s address, and he delivered them over the weekend.

I won’t compare the excitement of tearing open that cardboard box to seeing your baby arrive — that would be wrong — but there are some similarities, the main ones being, “Wow, that came out of me?” and the realization that all the labor pains were worth it after all.

The book is about the cloning of dogs — how, and why, it came to be achieved, and the colorful characters involved: from the Arizona billionaire who funded the initial research; to the scientists who produced Snuppy, the first canine clone, in South Korea; to those who marketed the service (even before the first dog was cloned); to those who bought it, the bereaved pet owners seeking replicas of dogs dead or near death.

It was two years in the making (the book, not dog cloning) — a project I undertook right after I left the Baltimore Sun, and one that wouldn’t have been accomplished were it not for the help of a lot of people.

My first autographed copy is being sent to one of them, Rona Kim, a law student in Seoul who served as my guide and interpreter during my visit to Korea, and without whom I would have probably spent three-fourths of my time there hopelessly lost.

The official release date of “DOG, INC.” is Dec. 30, but it can be pre-ordered now from all the major retailers.

By then, Ace and I will be headed back east — first to Washington for a scheduled appearance on the Diane Rehm show Jan. 5 (me, not Ace), then to Baltimore, where we hope to host a couple of book signing parties (details to come) and find a place to call home.


Comment from JillyBean
Time December 8, 2010 at 9:38 am

Congrats John – Looking forward to reading it!!!

Comment from Anne
Time December 8, 2010 at 11:14 am

I’d like to pre order a copy of Ace. Can you have him cloned for me?? Let me know when the puppy is ready and I’ll come get him where ever you are 😉

Comment from debbie
Time December 8, 2010 at 12:53 pm

Congrats John and best wishes for the success of your new book.

Comment from Kathy G.
Time December 8, 2010 at 4:34 pm

I’ve already pre-ordered my book…how do I get an autographed copy…or do I have to drive all the way back to Baltimore? Good luck with your continued adventures!

Comment from Brenna
Time December 9, 2010 at 9:29 am

Besides the book already preordered over here! My favorite part of this blog is looking for a place to call home in Baltimore! We have missed you these past 7 months and cannot wait for your return! To celebrate the book will be fantastic (i’m thinking a party at Idle is only appropriate followed by another “Old School Bar Crawl”) Merry Christmas John & Ace! See you in the New Year!
Gunther misses you and Honeybun well she is a little blind and somewhat deaf but I am sure once she smells you she will realize what she was missing!

Comment from Sue
Time December 9, 2010 at 2:33 pm

Pre-ordered my copy awhile back and looking forward to it. An appearance on the Diane Rehm show Jan. 5? Cool! We’ll be listening!