Solana Beach publisher shows books at new Central Library

Solana Beach–based Dayton Publishing, established in 2013 by long-time resident Linnea Dayton, has three books on display in the 48th Annual Local Author Exhibit at the new downtown San Diego Central Library. Dayton and her husband, Scripps Institution of Oceanography professor emeritus Paul Dayton, were among the 300 or so attendees at the authors’ reception held on Jan. 31, at the library’s Joan and Irwin Jacobs Common.

Also attending the reception were author Tonton Jim and illustrator E. Felix Lyon, whose 80-page storybook Max and the Lowrider Car was one of the three Dayton Publishing entries in the exhibit. In the story, Max, a wolf cub in the fifth grade, discovers an amazing customized car in Mr. L. Lobo’s auto body shop. From that day on, life changes for Max, his friends, his big brother, and nearly everyone else in the town of Hound’s Glenn. The quest for more cars to customize leads a small mixed band of adventurers (wolves and hounds, pups and grownups) on a road trip complete with campfire monster stories, motorcycle-riding wild boars, and an invasion by a town full of very perturbed birds. In the end, Max dreams up a way to fix everything.

“It’s a wonderfully funny story,” says Dayton, “with truly charming illustrations. Both kids and grownups enjoy it. I feel very lucky to be its publisher and now to be working with the author and illustrator on book two of this Hound’s Glenn series.”

Dayton is currently working on an ebook edition of Max and the Lowrider Car. “And an audiobook would be great,” she says.

The other two Dayton Publishing books in the exhibit are Jack David, the Noisiest Kid in the Class and Ann Marie, the Noisiest Kid in the Class.

“The two stories are the same, word for word,” says Dayton, “except the hero is a noisy boy in one book and a noisy girl in the other.”

Although the energetic Jack David or Ann Marie has a hard time sitting still and working quietly in the schoolroom, this enthusiastic child shines when the class takes a walk in the woods, and especially when there seems to be a bear nearby.

The two 32-page books by Lindy Brown are the first released by Dayton Publishing’s Tell and Show imprint. Enlivened with colorful graphics and photos of the plants and animals encountered in the story, these books provide captions and beautifully bordered spaces for children to illustrate the story themselves.

“Illustrating a story can help a young child understand and remember what the story is about,” says Dayton. “That’s the idea behind Tell and Show books. Also, an older child — or a parent, grandparent, aunt or uncle — might enjoy illustrating the book for a younger child, creating a one-of-a-kind keepsake.

Dayton is herself an award-winning author and editor of bestselling books for artists and photographers who use the computer in their work. For instance, during its 21-year lifespan The Photoshop Wow! Book, which she co-authored with Cardiff resident Jack Davis and later with Cristen Gillespie, has sold over a million copies in 11 languages. To separate her previous work from her new endeavor, Dayton decided to use Lindy Brown, her childhood nickname and maiden name, as her children’s-book pen name.

All Dayton Publishing books are produced using print-on-demand (POD) technology.

“I chose it because I like the idea of books being produced as they’re ordered,” says Dayton, “with no overproduction, no books sitting around in a warehouse. With POD if someone orders a book on Monday, it’s printed and shipped on Monday and delivered on Tuesday or Wednesday. POD is also the least expensive way to start out as a publisher if you have the editorial, design, and production skills required for making books.”

The two Noisiest Kid books are available on and directly from the publisher, and Max and the Lowrider Car is also available at other online retailers and through bookstores. (Amazon link)