Give back to the community that inspired The Great Believers

I want to give some money to a great organization. I need your help.

Toward the end of The Great Believers, a character who’s leaving the hospital mentions that Open Hand has already been to his place, filling his refrigerator with groceries. Open Hand was a real organization that helped thousands in Chicago, and it has since evolved into Vital Bridges, a food pantry for those living with HIV/AIDS. Neither program would have existed without the tireless work of legendary Chicago activist Lori Cannon, who was also an invaluable resource for me in writing The Great Believers.

Help me give back to an organization that’s helped so many, and that would have been there for my characters when they needed help the most.

Here’s the deal: Between June 19th and September 19th, take a photo of yourself with the hardcover, audiobook, or the ebook of The Great Believers (or of the book and your dog, or the book with some flowers, or the book just hanging by itself wearing a mud mask and watching Netflix, whatever floats your boat) with the hashtag #TheGreatBelieversDonate on Instagram, Twitter, or my Facebook page. For every photo posted, I’ll donate one dollar to Vital Bridges, up to $5,000.* I encourage you to tag me in your photos—you can find me on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.

Hey, are you a bookseller? Cool! I love you! You could help us out even more by pledging matching donations either to Vital Bridges or to an HIV/AIDS related charity in your own community.

Or maybe you’re a reader who’s been moved to donate locally. In either case, here’s an incomplete list of some other organizations that do amazing work, and need our continued support:

I’d really love to go broke doing this. Please help by spreading the word, and by using the hashtag. One of the two epigraphs on the novel is from a poem by Rebecca Hazelton: “The world is a wonder, but the portions are small.” I appreciate your help in making the portions a little larger for some people I care about a lot.


* One post per person per platform. Photos containing hardcover, ebook, and audiobook editions are all valid entries. Campaign runs 6/19/18 through 9/19/18 or when donation goal of $5k is reached.

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