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This is my nineteenth book. Some people build homes or rustic furniture. Others act a legal counsel or invest other people's money. Still others practice medicine or drive trucks. I write books and make photographs. I love what I do: document and record the creative work of others more talented than I. And there are hundreds of thousands of others out there who do the same thing I do. Just walk into a major bookstore sometime and you'll realize that there really are millions of books on the market today. Nonetheless, I like to think I've had an influence, albeit small, on the field of rustic furniture and design. I see all kinds of homes and all kinds of rustic furniture. At my gallery in upstate New York, budding artists stop by just about every day (at least in the summer) to show me their latest creations. And a few times a week I receive portfolios from designers and architects who would love to see their work published. Frankly, I am incredibly encouraged each time I speak with any of these people. They have the drive to create something and the courage to show their work to others, which can be very scary if you don't have your head on straight. The potential for criticism or rejection is too much for some people. At the same time, I love speaking with entry-level people and, as an educator, take a bit of pride in realizing that they came to me for advice. Some novices go on to make really great furniture. I've had the pleasure of encouraging a few dozen individuals who have created careers for themselves in the rustic furniture business.