Having a computer and an internet connection right in the RV in the campground next to the beach, he tried to identify the shells but couldn't do it. Two weeks later he had tentative identifications of a few of the shells. Months later he had accumulated several seashell identification books and had made some progress.
That was very frustrating. Dr. John knew almost nothing about Atlantic Coast seashell species, but he knew a lot about Pacific Coast shells from his graduate work. What's more he had the education and background that should make shell identification easy.
If he couldn't identify shells he picked up, what could someone without such a background do? He decided to "write a book".
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