You see, I’m surrounded by breast cancer. Sadly, my younger sister died of breast cancer a little over five years ago after a courageous battle with it for 15 years. She had a goal to reach her 50th birthday and she died about a week after that. I still remember vividly our last weekend together with some of my cousins, my mom, and my aunt to celebrate her 50th birthday together. We’d planned the weekend trip to her house months before we knew she’d be so sick and be in home hospice. I’ll always cherish that last memory. She was positive to the end and never complained about her illness or all the chemotherapy she had to go through. I think that’s one reason she survived as long as she did.
My mom and my aunt are both breast cancer survivors. One of my grandmothers also had it, but died from something else. And I'm watched very closely by my doctors for this disease. So this is a cause close to my heart.
So here’s Jon to tell us about his project and how it came about.
|Photo by Scott Mitchell|
My body went a little limp as I sat there trying to process what I had just heard. It couldn’t be true. But Faith wasn’t done with her story. She went on to tell me that the cancer was already at stage four and that she had known about it for awhile but she hadn’t gone to the doctor because she couldn’t afford it.
I’m sure I did my best to say something comforting, but the truth was that I got angry. People shouldn’t have to suffer needlessly. I told Faith that money wasn’t going to get in the way of her beating the cancer, hung up the phone, and then I sent out an email to some friends.
Project Book Babe
Faith has made an enormous impact in the lives of countless authors, and all of them wanted to help. Within 48 hours, an amazing group of people put together what we called Project Book Babe, a live event featuring eleven authors that included myself, Stephenie, Shannon Hale, Brandon Mull, Frank Beddor, and Laini Taylor.
We got a slew of signed books to auction from authors like Rick Riordan and Christopher Paolini, not to mention generous donations from our publishers. And with help from an army of volunteers and some amazing bloggers like Twilight Moms and Twilight Lexicon, we were able to raise somewhere in the neighborhood of $150,000.
Thousands More Need Help
It was a magical weekend and I’m happy to report that Faith, the Book Babe, is alive and well. She’s even working at Changing Hands again, which for me is a kind of storybook ending. But I also know that there are thousands of others who are locked in battle with breast cancer. I don’t want to sit idly by.
I’ve been lucky enough to publish nine books through Scholastic, Little Brown, and Thomas Nelson. But the publishing industry is going through a state of hyper change, so I’ve decided to step out and publish some of my own upcoming books. The first is called Grey Griffins: Night of Dragons and I’m running a Kickstarter campaign to cover the costs of professional editorial and cover art. More importantly, I also found an exciting way I can help raise some more money for breast cancer research.
As part of that Kickstarter campaign, I’ve asked ten author friends to write short stories set in the world of Grey Griffins series and we’re going to donate 100% of the profits from the collected anthology to the National Breast Cancer Foundation and Kids Need to Read.
Here’s a list of the amazing authors who are participating:
• Brandon Mull | NY Times Bestselling Author, Fablehaven
• Aprilynne Pike | NY Times Bestselling Author, Wings
• Frank Beddor | NY Times Bestselling Author, Looking Glass Wars
• Michael Spradlin | NY Times Bestselling Author, Youngest Templar
• Dean Lorey | Co-Executive Producer, Arrested Development
• Shannon Messenger | Let the Sky Fall, Keeper of the Lost Cities
• Tom Leveen | Party, manicpixiedreamgirl, Sick
• Joseph Nassise | International Bestselling Author, Templar Chronicles
• Matt Forbeck | Leverage: The Con Job based on the TNT television series
• Janette Rallison | My Fair Godmother, Slayers
This Project Needs Your Help
I’m excited about the potential of this project and I hope you are as well. You can find out more about the Kickstarter campaign and how you can help HERE.
You Can Even Get Your Story Published in the Grey Griffins Anthology
For the writers who are reading this, one of you could get his or her story published in the anthology, right next to all those New York Times bestsellers. You can find the submission guidelines HERE.
You can find Jon at:
Blog * Twitter * Facebook
Jon Samuel Lewis is an American writer best known for the acclaimed Grey Griffins series published by Scholastic’s Orchard Books. After selling nearly a million copies in the original trilogy, Lewis and his writing partner, Derek Benz teamed with Little Brown to produce the Grey Griffins Clockwork Chronicles.
He is also the author of CHAOS Novels, a young adult adventure series that combines supernatural, science fiction, and urban fantasy to create an exciting hybrid of non-stop adventure.
Lewis has written for DC/WildStorm. He is a graduate of Arizona State University’s Walter Cronkite School of Broadcasting, and has explored an eclectic career including news reporting, radio production, animation, graphic design, web development, mural painting, speech writing, video game development, voice over work, and marketing.
He currently resides in Arizona with his wife and children.
Jon has generously donated a copy of THE GREY GRIFFINS: THE PARAGON PRISON for a giveaway. Here’s a description from Goodreads:
The Paragon Engine, a machine that can unlock portals to any dimension throughout the universe, is the
In this final book of the Clockwork Chronicles trilogy, the Grey Griffins face questions about destiny, personal choice, and what courage really means-all while finding a way to destroy Von Strife, his evil half-fairies, and his legion of killer clockworks.
To enter, all you need to do is be a follower (just click the follow button if you’re not a follower) and leave a comment by midnight on September 21st. I’ll announce the winner on September 23rd. If your e-mail is not on your Google Profile, please leave it in the comments.
If you mention this contest on Twitter, Facebook, or your blog, mention this in the comments and I'll give you an extra entry. You must be 13 or older to enter. This is for U.S. residents only.
Here’s what’s coming up:
Next Monday I’m interviewing Alex Cavanaugh, one of our followers, and giving away ARCs of CASSAFIRE and CASSASTORM. This is an interesting Sci-fi series that takes Bryon from a young adult into adulthood. I don’t spotlight adult books but I’m a big following and fan of Alex and this is the last book in his series. And he’s a very successful blogger and will be sharing blogging advice with us. In these times when some writers seem to be tiring of blogging, I really feel it’s important to help each other invigorate our blogs and support each other by continuing to follow each other.
Next Wednesday I’m interviewing another follower, debut author Christina Lee, and giving away an e-book of her new fantastic adult novel, ALL OF YOU, a contemporary romantic story with great characters.
Next Friday I’m doing the Stuck In A Good Book Giveaway Hop. I’ll have lots of great choices for you to pick from.
The following Monday I’m interviewing debut author Peggy Eddleman and giving away an ARC of SKY JUMPERS, her fantastic upper grade middle grade post- apocalyptic story. I haven’t seen any post-apocalyptic middle grade stories and I really enjoyed reading about Hope, a girl who thinks she has no talents because she’s not good at inventing like everyone else in her small town.
And don't forget our Tuesday Tips and Casey's Thursday agent spotlights.
Hope to see you on Monday!