Wednesday, 27 July 2016

Bestselling Author Freya North Supporting Bowel Cancer Fundraising Book

ALL proceeds raised from sales of the Lives & Times fundraising book are donated to the Beating Bowel Cancer charity. The book has raised over £2100 so far.

On an a chilly spring evening in 2015 I met up with the author Freya North in London and photographed her for the book. This chapter was a fascinating chapter to write up for a couple of reasons. Freya is an Ambassador for the Beating Bowel Cancer charity having lost a close friend, Hannah Berry, to this awful illness. Also while we were making arrangements to meet up we discovered a shared love of The Charlatans, so we decided to do the photo before their gig at The Roundhouse in London. In the above photo she posed with the Beating Bowel Cancer tie which is helping to raise awareness through a group on Facebook.

I was also quite a good boy as I steered clear of asking Freya for writing or publishing tips. She had kindly given up some of her free time to meet me on a night out, and I would imagine she gets asked for advice all the time. However I have to confess that since then and over recent months Freya has very kindly given me quite a lot of tips and advice for which I am very grateful. I sent Freya an advanced copy of the book, and I was very pleased, and a little relieved, when she gave it the thumbs up. She also very kindly ordered some more copies of the book when it was published.

Last year Freya published her 14th novel The Turning Point which is already a bestseller and a great success for her. I have just finished reading it and it is a brilliant book. Here was I taking 18 months to produce my 2nd book, I have some way to catch up on so many levels! 

Freya was absolutely lovely and it was great to finally meet up with her. It turned into a great evening as after the photo I went to Belgo in Camden for a meal, which is one of my favourite restaurant chains, and then The Charlatans were simply stunning.

My mother successfully had surgery in February 2014 to remove a cancerous nodule from her left lung, which as expected was a secondary cancer related to her bowel cancer of 2012. This was her fourth cancer operation in two and a half years. She made a great recovery, but unfortunately last October another cancerous nodule was detected on her left lung following her regular CT scan. The plan was for Mum to have surgery to have the nodule removed, but unfortunately in November Mum had a seizure and after tests we discovered that the cancer had spread to her brain, so that operation was postponed. In January she had "CyberKnife" treatment over three consecutive days for the brain cancer. Attention was then turned back to the lung, and she was operated on in early March and they removed the lower lob of her left lung as more nodules had appeared. Although Mum made a good recovery from the operation, unfortunately the brain cancer returned with a vengeance and a recent seizure put mum in hospital for 6 weeks virtually paralysing her right side and badly affecting her speech. Sadly while she was in hospital we learned that her cancer is now terminal. She has recently moved into a nursing home where she can receive 24/7 care and be comfortable for the time that she has left. The courage and dignity she has shown on the back of this devastating news is amazing, she remains a true inspiration. If ever she has needed positive vibes now is very much that time.

If anything the whole point of doing the book has been even more reinforced by this recent turn of events. Please support this fundraising book as every sale counts both in raising money and raising awareness about bowel cancer.

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