This was my second long cycle tour, and the first one I had planned myself. The trip went off without any major problems or major changes of plan, despite everything that had happened on Hwy 1.
The central coast of California is amenable to credit-card touring, even if (unlike us) you want to retain the flexibility of not making hotel reservations. Despite the fact that we were traveling during spring break season, I believe all the places we ended up had vacancies. (I had made reservations everywhere in advance, because I'm not clairvoyant.)
I used Bicycling the Pacific Coast (highly recommended) to plan most of the route. I used Google Maps to choose cities, hotels/motels, and lunch stops, and BikeRouteToaster.com to obtain elevation profiles for prospective routes. I also got a couple of tidbits from California Beaches (Foghorn Outdoors series), which has more info about restaurants and hotels than Bicycling the Pacific Coast, but on the whole I would not recommend that book to cycle tourists. It has a lot of junk you won't use, and you can do just as well or better by looking online these days.
Thanks to Piaw, who provided hotel and routing suggestions. And thanks to Yoyo for reviewing my trip plan and routing us away from freeways, highways, and expressways.