20140317135230-IMG_1832by Lisa M.A. Winters

The science fiction community, both amateur and professional, have always helped out their own in times of need. This time, authors and artists are gathering for C.J. Henderson, a prolific writer of not only comics such as Neil Gaiman’s Lady Justice and Kolchak: The Night Stalker continuations, but his own Jack Hagee hardboiled-detective and supernatural detective Teddy London series.

Just before Labor Day in 2013, Henderson was admitted to the hospital for blood clots in his legs. While he was there, an examination revealed suspicious nodules that were later revealed to be non-Hodgkin Lymphoma. He had actually been crippled by the disease for several years without realising it. After going through chemotherapy and all the usual side-effects of chemical and radiation treatments, including lost work, doctors discovered that they had not quite beaten the disease. All the ‘little cancers’ were wiped out but what remained clustered in Henderson’s lower back, pressing against the nerves in his spine and causing excruciating pain.

Re-enter Henderson’s friends and Silence in the Library Publishing, with their “Monkeying Around, For a Good Cause” campaign. They sum up their purpose in their IndieGoGo page: “What we are doing here is endowing a grant. A grant that will allow CJ to continue to produce the kinds of stories that CJ writes. Stories with the power to entertain and captivate us all. We are making an investment in CJ.”

“CJ Henderson is one of the hardest-working writers in the industry,” says Ron Garner of Silence in the Library Publishing. “Chemo has made it impossible for him to write, and the bills are mounting. His friends came together to give him a hand—and created an amazing anthology in the process.”

20140317135848-Final6x9-Ron-JC-DanceAll proceeds (minus shipping/handling/site admin fee) go to help Henderson pay medical and household bills while he is unable to work due to chemo. The crowdfunded anthology on Indiegogo offers 25 authors in the first volume, including: Kevin J. Anderson and Rebecca Moesta, Maggie Allen, Jack Dann, Ed Greenwood, Joe Haldeman, Nancy and Belle Holder, Tanya Huff, Gail Z. Martin, Danielle Ackley-McPhail, Jean Rabe, Mike Resnik, Hildy Silverman, Janine Spendlove, Michael A. Stackpole, Anton Strout, Kelly Swails, Robert E. Vardeman, Elizabeth A. Vaughan, Bryan Young, Jean Marie Ward, Gene Wolfe, and Timothy Zahn. And, of course, CJ Henderson. All of the authors/artists/musicians and Silence in the Library Publishing have waived their portion of the proceeds to enable Henderson to receive maximum benefit.

Donors can receive not only a DRM-free copy of the complete and full collection, but a print collection of selected material (as they anticipate there will be too many contributions for a reasonably-priced “dead-tree” edition), Tuckerisations, mentoring sessions, autographs and book bundles by the project contributors.

“I’m honored to be helping out with ‘Monkeying Around for a Good Cause.’ C.J. Henderson is one of the best guys in the business. He’s always ready with a story or an anecdote or a piece of genuinely good advice to new writers. I think more than anything — more than his delightful pulp stories, more than his excellent tie-in fiction, more than his fantasy or his horror or his science fiction, more than his disturbing obsession with simians — what makes Ceej one of our finest is that he’s always willing to help out an up-and-coming writer on their path to professionalism.” — Keith R.A. DeCandido

As of March 28, the campaign is, with 34 days left, only $1,000 dollars short of their initial minimal goal. Stretch goals will not only ensure a better ‘investment’, but will add at least 26 more authors’ contributions to the work as a whole, to be published in a second volume; and provide even more bundled fiction to what contributors will already receive.

“[I] found out I had the most amazing set of friends and fans a goofy guy could hope for.” – C. J. Henderson

We at SCIFI.radio wish Mr. Henderson all the best for his healing and recovery.


Lisa M.A. Winters

Lisa M.A. Winters