It’s finally here, publication day for The Splendid Ticket, a book that took eight years from the first scribbled lines in 2014 to the finished product that can be found on the shelves of fine bookstores everywhere, plus Amazon. Tonight there will be a launch event at Vintage Bookstore and Wine Bar at 1101 East 11th Street in Austin, from 7:00-8:00 PM. I have no idea what to expect. I am prepared for crushing mob, just in case, with thousands of copies of all my books, six bodyguards that look like Randall Tex Cobb’s older brothers, plenty of one-dollar bills for change should anyone come with cash, enough stanchions joined by velvet rope to stretch sixteen city blocks, and a crowd-control specialist who managed the Queen’s Jubilee. Venmo QR codes everywhere. I realize this may be overdoing it. I’m pretty sure my parents are coming, and my wife, but apart from that, the only thing I am absolutely certain of is that when it is all over I will drink some wine at the bar, and count my lucky stars that The Splendid Ticket somehow made it to the shelves without getting picked off on the way like a baby sea turtle scuttling for the surf.