Hi. It’s me…S.L. Shelton. I don’t know if you remember me but I was one of your Bestselling Political Thriller authors recently (In fact, last year all of my books were Kindle Top 10 Political, Conspiracy, Espionage, Techno and/or Military Bestsellers). I don’t blame you if you’ve forgotten about me. I know you’re busy and have a lot of authors to keep track of. But if you do remember me, you might have noticed I’m not putting out three to five books a year anymore. It’s nothing personal. I still love you, but you see, my wife got sick…like really sick. Like holy-crap-we-really-didn’t-see-that-coming sick.
It’s a rare form of cancer. And though I could have told you years ago that my beautiful wife was a rare and magnificent creature, leaving me bewildered as to why she picked a crusty old soldier/spy writer to share her life with, I couldn’t have predicted how rare her disease would be. I guess with a rare and transcendent soul comes rare and transcendent pain. I’d like to believe otherwise but it’s hard to see silver linings these days.
So rare is her disease that there are fewer than 100 English language cases since the cancer’s first discovery in 1919. An odd form of Squamous Cell Carcinoma. Worse, it was detected at a late stage, after many months of trying to figure out why she was sick.
Needless to say, my writing suffered during the months’ decline in her health, but my pen has all but ceased moving since the diagnosis following a midnight run to the emergency room near the end of April. I’m almost afraid to write what’s in my heart now for fear the grief will taint the treatment process.
It’s been some time since my last release, but I hope to have another book out soon. I did manage to finish one novel just before the diagnosis sent our world careening.
But as my writing calls to me on occasion, in quiet moments after she’s gone to sleep, or the lull between treatments and the next meal, I do think of you and all you’ve done for me over the past two years. I know I’m not generating the huge sale numbers that I used to, but thanks to the opportunity you’ve given me, I do make some sales. And each month you deliver the royalties to our bank account. They have made a difference, helping to prop us up as things have become tight. And I am mightily grateful.
I wish I could return to my promotions, giveaways, memes, posters, interviews and all such activities that help make an author popular. I learned well from your examples and benefited from those lessons early on. But even unable to spend that time or those resources now, I am still grateful for the monthly royalties we receive from you…royalties that wouldn’t have been there had it not been for your innovative and supportive practices toward indie authors.
Thank you. From the bottom of my heart, I thank you for all you’ve done for us. Even as I stand away from my writing to deal with the hardest of heartaches, I still find myself able to hold my head up and proudly say “I’m an author, supporting my wife with my writing,” thanks to Amazon.
I just wanted you to know that despite the fact I’m only one of many hundreds of thousands of authors in your vast system, it feels like you have paid attention to me individually, have seen my potential, and have opened the door for me to succeed.
That’s it. That’s all I wanted to say; Thank you, keep up the good work. As soon as I can string together enough free moments to get another book launched, you will quite literally be the first to know.
Very best and kind regards