When I was a kid and someone offered you a peanut butter cookie you pretty much knew what to expect. Not that everyone made the same exact cookie, but they were close. Most likely from a recipe on the back of the peanut butter jar.
Even the grocery store cookies tasted like the ones from home, but for a modest fee they made them in-store for you and packaged them for your purchasing (and toting) convenience.
I wanted to recapture some of that but with modern adjustments. So I started with James Beard.