Why Eighteen and Cancer

I must have gone through a dozen book titles in the past few months. Some (most) were terrible ranging from ’Advice for the Fighters’ (I know, right) to ’What Else Would You Rather Do?’ (what was I thinking). Anyway, let’s be generous and say that these were working titles.

It wasn’t until a trip to New York a few months back when I got the idea for the title as it currently stands. One evening I went for a long walk around this amazing city and pondered on the title. I had words like eighteen, teenager, child and/or adult, growing up, crossroad, junction, cancer and so on repeating in my head but I just wasn’t getting anywhere.

Then it hit me.

New York addresses!

Like 33rd & Park or 45th & 5th.

18 & Cancer.

That was exactly me all those years ago. Eighteen years old and diagnosed with cancer, with my life at a crossroad. I parked the idea for a while to let it marinate but I knew that this was going to be the one.

It was just the small matter of turning the idea into a cover and finding a great artist and designer to help. Enter Basia Górska. She is not only a dear friend but a very talented artist. I can’t draw a stickman (with or without a ruler) to save my life but she took a very rough sketch (yeah, it was terrible) and a brief conversation and crafted this amazing book cover. It took exactly one take. I was blown away.

You can find Basia’s amazing work on her website, Instagram and Facebook.