Do the Cancer Can-Can for a Write Fine Prize

Cancer is never good news. I hate hearing about the dread disease striking loved ones, whether friends or family or the friends and family of my friends. I got an email this morning from Anna Banks, whose YA fantasy romance Of Poseidon was snapped up by Fiewel and Friends for release in spring of 2012. Let me tell you, Anna was in her element when she wrote her awesome book. I know because I had a chance to read and critique the early chapters soon after Anna joined Emerald Coast Writers.

Check this awesome cover.

But this post isn’t about Anna’s book, it’s about cancer. Anna’s mother died of cancer with very little warning on October 27th this year.  Here’s Anna’s short post before she went on hiatus. Not much later, Anna got word that her niece has an aggressive form of breast cancer, and she wondered about having a fund raiser. This morning I got news of that fundraiser, as follows:

“Hi all,
  “Just wanted to let everyone know that this Saturday, December 10th, my family is hosting a benefit fish fry for my niece, Nikki, who lives right here in Fort Walton. It will be at Turkey Creek in Niceville at 11 am, and will last as long as we have fish. She has been diagnosed with an aggressive form of breast cancer which is spreading (she is 28 years old). She will be undergoing chemo and radiation in the next weeks, and will not be able to work (or do much of anything). We are trying to raise money to help her pay household bills and medical expenses during these coming difficult weeks. If you don’t like fish, we’ll be grilling hot dogs too, and there will be a bake sale and raffle as well.

“It would mean a lot to me if you could spread the word, even if you’re not able to attend. My mom passed away in October of cancer, so we are still in “fight” mode.

“Thanks so much!”

I’m not at home to attend. But I can sure do as Anna asked and spread the word. I’ve heard a lot about attitude and optimism making a big difference in the body’s response to invasion from any disease, not just cancer. But I’m also under no illusion that attitude alone can cure the problem. So I propose a cancer Can-can to bring some cheer to the fundraising.

My Cancer Can-can isn’t the original cancan dance, although it would be great if every contributor would precede their donation with some fancy dancing and a high-kick or two accompanied by a squeal, shout or roar, whatever it takes to scare the cancer away. Of course, the most important part of the dance is an arm-swing to drop money into the Cancer Can-can. “Yes, you can fight cancer with the help of those who care.” That’s the message I want to send Anna’s niece. “Can” you please help?

To help encourage giving, I’m offering either a beta-read of up to 100000 words or a 10000 word full critique, about 4 chapters of any genre except erotica, to the person who gives the most generous donation before January 1st. If this person doesn’t need a beta-read or critique, I can always give a 30 tweet prize, once a day for a month, or something else like a large box of books from my huge collection. Do the Cancer Can-can for the right reason and I’ll take care of a write fine prize.

The donations won’t go through me. Here is the information provided by Anna:

“I have posted a Paypal donation button on the top of my blog. If someone wishes to mail a check instead, they can make the check payable to Harriett Moellenbrink (Nicole “Nikki” is her middle name, but the benefit account at Compass Bank had to be set up in her legal name, Harriett). Checks should be mailed to:

314 Washington Ave
Valparaiso, FL 32580

You can also contact Anna through her profile, here. I’ll ask her to contact me on January 1st with the name of the most generous donor. Thanks!

Share A Heart

Indie author-friendly freelance editor, children's book blogger for picture books through YA, kid lit, SF/fantasy lover with special fondness for middle grade, pun-loving SCBWI member, meter-maid for poetry and rhyming picture books.


  1. I hope someday that we can find a cure for some cancers. Chemotherapy just about destroys a person. You know…sharks don’t get cancer? Why is that? Scientists should study them and see if their immunity can be transferred to humans.

  2. I find it so sad that Nikki has to worry about medical expenses at a time like this. I have twice been in hospital for cancer and everything was paid in totality by the state here in France, and how appreciative I am.

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