Deb and I are 'downsizing' and the shuffling of papers begins. She came at me the other day presenting a newspaper story from '2000 about' birding. Some guy named "Sibley' she said.....
Now....in 2000, Sibley was 39 years old and had just printed off THE Sibley Guide to Birds. Let's see....in 2000 I was teaching 4th grade in Washington State. Just earned my Masters' and was into Technology. My daughters were 18 and 16 and wanting to leave the house. But If you take the time I was 39 years old, I was teaching 3rd grade and was just getting into Technology. So, there I was....you? Where were you and what were you doing when the bible of Birding came out in 2000 or when you were 39? Think...ponder. Did you write your bible?
Upon reading the article, Sibley went thru his life and the beginnings of his bird drawings was as a young lad of 6 as his dad was an ornithologist. From that point it just expanded and he really got hooked on birding when he started banding birds in California. In 1980 he was hired by Pete Dunne to count hawks at Higbee Beach for $200 for three weeks of work. It wasn't until he casually spent time in the Meadows between 1992 and 1999 that he started 'fixing' what needed to be fixed in regards to Peterson's Guide to Birds.
Well, the rest is history..... But, what is in a name you say? One has to admit that the father of birding here in America was John James Audubon. His successor was Roger Tory Peterson. ....two great ones. So when Sibley's book to birding was near completion and, according to the article....a Knopf publisher company representative 'met in person' with Sibley to obviously discuss making the book successful. Hard to imagine his guide being 'not successful', but it must have been discussed. The company representative suggested that 'to be in keeping' with John James Audubon and Roger Tory Peterson, that David Sibley should use his middle name as well on the cover. So, instead of just David Sibley, he is now David ALLEN Sibley.....as he stated, he was happy to oblige, after all....when you've got a book on the best-seller list, things aren't like they used to be.
Success? Yes, I guess.....in the first few weeks his guide sold over 100,000 copies and a second printing was made. Taking a look at my copy, it was the 11th printing in the 2010 edition so how many sold between 2000 and 2010 and how many between 2010 and now? .....