Against the urgings of three doctors—my general physician, the ear and nose and throat specialist, and for a second opinion, an endocrinologist (chosen because he believes his profession is too eager to perform thyroidectomies)—I delayed my thyroid cancer surgery for several pressing reasons.
After our son Jeremy’s death from lymphoma, I discovered that I was not healthy in a variety of ways; for one, years of living with publishing and broadcasting and travel deadlines—not to mention a long and gruesome journey for our family into a losing battle with a rare form of lymphoma—my adrenals kind of got stuck on the fright and flight button leaving me doing life at a kind of constant “warp” speed.
There was a family business crisis that demanded the full attention of David and myself. We were required to spend countless hours each day in phone consultations, and cumulatively we dedicated some twenty days to bring our gifts and understanding to help avert disastrous outcomes.
But mostly, our son, Randall Mains and his Pathmaker Marketing Group, were studying the science of crowd funding and had taken the better part of three months to design a Kickstarter Campaign to revise, re-illustrate and redesign our prize-winning children’s trilogy, Tales of the Kingdom, Tales of the Resistance and Tales of the Restoration that David and I had started writing some thirty years ago.
It’s amazing what a cancer diagnosis will do to force you to think about which legacy projects you want to leave behind.
These books, although highly thought of and generously reviewed (check them out on Amazon.com), have sort of languished in the hinterlands of religious publishing. Out of print/ back in print/sub-rights granted helter skelter. Finally, the publishing rights (those legal permissions authors grant to publishers) reverted to us, and we all felt it was time to give these books, which some have compared to Bunyan’s Pilgrim’s Progress, and some to C. S. Lewis’s Narnia series, appropriate attention. If anything I have done in a lifetime of writing deserves my intensive focus now that I am 71, these three books (written for children of all ages) are certainly the legacy I want to leave behind.
Probably the delay on a cancer operation (I canceled it twice) was motivated by the thinking: I’ve fought for the life of one son and lost. I need to fight for the lives of these literary children and give them a chance to dance forward into the future—even when I am no longer around.
So the work has been done, revisions have been chosen, an artist has won a contest, the contract has been written for him to re-do some 36 illustrations, a video has been shot and edited, the project has been submitted to the Kickstarter panel, the word has come that The Kingdom Tales campaign has been approved and we launched on-line last week.
I made an appointment and saw the ENT physician last Thursday and a thyroidectomy has been scheduled for Monday, July 14.
I am healthier than I have been for some time. A business collapse has been averted. These well-loved but woefully under-marketed stories that deal with conflict and terror and delight are being redesigned and re-illustrated for another generation of readers.
Will you help us? Think beautiful Christmas gifts. Think stories that emphasize moral virtues and character development. Think about a King who is the most beautiful of men. Our goal is $20,400 but we would like to earn much, much more. If we don’t reach our goal, we won’t receive any of the financial pledges for pre-orders. Do me a favor, won’t you, and check out our page on Kickstarter. I would love to reach our goal by the time of my cancer operation on July 14. (The campaign ends August 5.)