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February 19th, 2012

One. Day.

The great Will Eisner once did a comics story that took place over ten minutes, and ended with the line, "What's ten minutes in a man's life?"

It is, as it turned out in both the story and in many circumstances in the real world, very, very significant.

Yesterday, I offered a free ebook of DRAWING OUT THE DRAGONS - A Meditation on Art, Destiny, and the Power of Choice, to everyone who chose to enter their name and address and click a download link. I stated as my goal that I would like to give away ONE THOUSAND books in twenty-four hours. And now, after just that ONE DAY, more than 1100 people have taken me up on my offer, and started reading the book that I consider to be the most meaningful thing I've ever written.

In just one day, people have already begun to tell me that this book is changing their lives - and I am humbled, and grateful. And now I would like to share the reason that I chose to do this.

My recent keynote address as the Guest of Honor at the LTUE Symposium at Utah Valley University brought the room to its feet for a long standing ovation, and for the rest of the day people shook my hands, and hugged me, and cried as they spoke, and thanked me for what I said in that presentation. It continued into the night at the restaurant where I ate, and at the signing, and then, at my hotel, via email. Some notes I got I was able to respond to in person the next day.

One note, I wasn't.

Emily Adams, my Book Babe and handler for the day, is the only one I shared this with at the time, because I was still processing it, and wasn't sure... I wasn't sure how to encompass all the emotion that I felt in reading this one particular letter.

Someone who may not even have been registered for the Symposium, but who was a fan, and nevertheless wanted to come, had attended the keynote.

They intended for that to be one of the last acts of their life.

One hour later, they changed their mind, because they believed I was speaking directly to them when I said, "I am here to say one of the most important things one human being can say to another - I believe in you. There is magic in the world, and I can show you where it is. And I will not let you fall."

The next morning, this person wrote me a note to thank me for being there, and for saying what I did - and to tell me they had informed friends and family of their circumstance, and now people knew, and they were going to a hospital to get some help.

And I cried, and bumped into walls while I got dressed, and then Emily and her hubby picked me up, and I went back to the Symposium, where I thought about the thousand different obstacles that had to be overcome for the Symposium to happen, and for me to attend, and for me to give that keynote address in that one hour, when that one person needed it more than anything.

Ten minutes. One hour. One day. They are significant measures of time when they contain something meaningful. I wanted to do something meaningful that lasted more than an hour, and reached more people than I could reach on my own, and so I called upon you, my Dragon Army, to help me - and together we helped start changing the lives of more than a thousand people in a single day.

I don't have anything more to say about what has already happened, except to note that it is YOU, each of you, who made this a magic and spectacular twenty-four hours: it is YOUR conviction that this book is meaningful that fired up people's imaginations, and got them to reach out for something they didn't realize they needed until they started to read. You did this. And knowing that, all I have left to say is a question, and a challenge...

You made something EXTRAORDINARY happen in just one day.

What can you do with a WEEK?

Show me.

I believe in you.

Here's the link. Pass it on - to EVERYONE.

Make today extraordinary

Your brother in moxie,

James