There is a contest attached to this post, I promise. But you have to read all the way to the end of the post to enter. Deal with it, this shit’s important.

I’ve met Peter David once. For about ten seconds. I’m sure he doesn’t remember. Hell, I barely remembered until I sat down to write this. It was one of those con meetings, before I had any success or could get conventions to give me badges and spots on panels. I had watched him on a panel talking about his new self-published venture, and at the end of it I went up to grab a card for the new book and mentioned to him that I really loved his work on X-Factor and particularly his run on The Incredible Hulk, which to this day is the only run on Hulk I really got into. He said thanks, and we both moved on.

So let’s be totally clear – I don’t know the man other than as a fan. I’ve sat in rooms where he’s been on panels, and I don’t always agree with everything he’s got to say. For a while there he got a little Joe Konrath-esque in his lambasting of traditional publishers as he championed the cause of self-publishing, but most folks go through that. If we’re lucky, we do it quietly and very few people notice. If we’re best-sellers, we draw a little more attention to ourselves.

But I digress. Longtime comic fans got that joke, I promise. The point of this is not whether or not Peter David is my friend, which he isn’t, or whether or not I am still a fan of Peter David, which I am. The point is that right now, Peter David is my brother, and he needs your help. Peter had a stroke on December 30th, and is currently recuperating in the hospital. He is getting some movement back on his right side, and he can speak, but he has a long road to get back to the level of mobility and health he was accustomed to.

And it’s going to be f’n expensive. According to his wife Kathleen on Peter’s website, they have insurance, but getting hospital sick right around New Year’s bones you twice. It’s not like getting sick in July, where you deal with deductibles and copays ’til you max out for the year, then you’re done. Oh no! Peter did it up right. He got a couple days’ worth of hospital care knocked out under 2012 deductibles and copays, then stayed right on through until the insurance reset three days ago. So double the out-of-pocket for the Davids. If that’s not kicking a fellow when he’s down, I don’t know what is.

But thanks to Davey Beauchamp, who’s been keeping his Facebook updated with Peter’s situation, now I know how to help. And I’m going to share that information with you.

Buy his books.

Not his tradpub stuff, although those books are awesome and we want those to sell, but the Davids won’t see any money from any of his licensed property work or graphic novel work for months, if not a year or more.

No, this is one time when the quick payment of the self-pub world can really make a difference in an author’s life. Go to PeterDavid.net and read the post from Kathleen. Then buy one of his self-pubbed books. The money from those books will be in Peter’s bank account by the end of March, and that’s going to be a huge help for someone who is racking up thousands of dollars in healthcare costs every day. And that’s with insurance.

I don’t mind telling you that this is a couple of my greatest fears. Strokes run in my family, and my mother started having small strokes about the time she turned fifty. She has full-blown Alzheimer’s now, and it’s terrifying to watch. Since I turn forty this year, it’s on the list of things I worry about. And an extended hospital stay would be horrific to my financial situation right now, since I’m just making ends meet by hustling as hard as I can. So I feel for Peter, and I’m going to go buy some of his books.

And they’ll be awesome, because the man made me weep over an issue of The Incredible Hulk, so how can his other fiction now be amaze balls?

Your mission today – go buy a Peter David book, then come back here and click the little Rafflecopter thingy. You can get entries for every book you buy – but don’t bullshit me, I’ll find out somehow! You can also get entries for sharing this link on Twitter or on Facebook. One winner will receive a free “Read Recklessly” T-shirt in awesome black, and something cool autographed. I dunno what, maybe a neat Magic card or something. Drawing is Monday.

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