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“My, My Heart Like a…Kickstart!” Images and Words from a Memorable Weekend

We are over the moon about how well the kickstarter launch for The Green Ember has gone so far. If you missed the wild weekend, here’s a brief (I hope!) summary.

We launched on Friday morning at 6am. Our goal was to reach $10,000 in pre-sales within 30 days.

We genuinely had absolutely no idea what to expect. I knew there were people who loved us and would support what we were doing, but I didn’t know how that would translate and how long it would take.

Not long, apparently!

09e9053f6d1a59f407a600d2631de553_largeWe met our goal in under 19 hours. We were amazed and delighted. Gina and I sat up in bed as the pledges that took us past 10K came in. We relished seeing every single name, including a big amount from an old friend who was generous and kind to me as a (dumb) young man. I have seen him once in the past 20 years and for only about a minute, at a funeral, and then we saw his generous pledge put us so close to our goal. Went to my heart. A friend from college put it over the top and we were giddy!

It was very hard to sleep, and we didn’t get much, but we coasted through on fumes of joy as our weekend shaped up as a busy, but bountiful one. I coached soccer on Saturday and watched my 8 year old (nearly birthday boy!) score a hat-trick. Yay! Then we worked on party prep and had all kinds of help. Our friend Jodi had come over and helped Gina for a long time Friday. My brother, Josiah, came over and did a bunch of prep work. Jessi, his wife, worked super hard that day too. Our friend Carrie came up and helped and lots of family and friends jumped in. Gina was the real star of the show. She did so much work in preparation for the party we had on Saturday, making it possible for me to focus on the kickstarter and get done what I needed to get done. She was magnificent. I love her. Mucho.

Andrew Mackay, my partner in crime, was an indefatigable champ. He worked so hard on so many details of the project and attacked a to-do list the length of the Nile. (We measured it using Science.) He was a marvel.

We had lots of help. I’m not listing everyone. (Remember that part about no sleep?) It was amazing.

DSC_0155 (1)Party time came along. We had so many people come. I don’t know for sure, but I think there might have been a hundred people here. (I did not use Science for that estimate.) Our friends Julie and Caroline drove up from Charlotte and surprised me. Wow! Old friends, new friends…we saw so many happy and supportive and loving faces at that party! It was a tremendous blessing, one I thank God for over and over in my prayers.

It was a fun and encouraging night, one we’ll not forget for a very long time, if ever.

I cannot express how deeply grateful I feel toward our many friends who have backed us in this energetic, enthusiastic, and powerfully loving way.

Now, the project is, of course, just getting started. We’ve had a good start, yes, but we’re eager to keep it up. Because every time that number rises, it means the story goes into another someone’s hands. Maybe a child who yearns for light in the darkness and for those “stabs of joy.” That’s my dream, God help me.

OK, here are some pictures my brother Josiah and his bride Jessi took. Enjoy!

[Warning: Lots of pictures of me.]

Dad and my beautiful wife.

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Two wonderful ladies! Jessi and Jamie.
Andrew Mackay of foreign parts and me, Sam Smith, 100% American and bald like our national bird animal.
Carrie and Julie!
My man, Bill!
The illustrator for The Black Star of Kingston, Josiah C. Smith. great kid and scorer of hat tricks. (Today is his birthday!)

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My parents and major supporters!
Maria and Luke. When Luke saw me that night, he said, “There’s my author!”
Elijah Samuel. Love this kid.

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  1. This is such a wonderful treat; to see all these pictures of people we love, and to hear how well things are going!
    Thank you so much.

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