The book I consider to be my best, Candles in the Dark: A Treasury of the World's Most Inspiring Parables, was a 9/11 book. Or was. It was originally scheduled to be published in September of 2001.
Of course, it wasn't.
Just a few days after the attack, an editor at John Wiley & Sons, the New York publishing firm that was working with me on this project, called to inform me that the publication of the book had been postponed indefinitely. It would, in fact, be weeks before a new publication release date could be determined.
The book had taken nearly two years to research and write, and I had an indescribable amount of time and money wrapped up in it . . . including securing last-minute permissions from publishers in Germany, Spain, and England. I don't now recall what my final tally was for long-distance phone calls (often protracted due to huge language barriers on my part), faxes, letters, forms, and legal fees . . . but I know I went bust before the book was finally published a year later.
Though Candles in the Dark is by far and away my best book (my opinion), it sold only modestly in the U.S., and is now out of print . . . though the Kindle version still sells. John Wiley & Sons also sold the book to publishers in China and Korea, but I have no idea how many copies sold in those versions in those countries. As far as I know, the book could have sold a dozen copies, or could have sold millions . . . either way, I had nothing to show for it other than my name on the cover among the Chinese and Korean letters.
The one takeaway from Candles . . . and it's my one contribution to the 9/11 aftermath . . . is that I was able to have conversations with several editors at Wiley who had lost friends and/or family in the tragedy, and my sacrifices involved in the book felt very meager in relation to those burdened by the uncertainties of job, health, or future.
I still like Candles, and the blend of parables I included from Jewish, Christian, Muslim, Hindu, Native American, and Sufi sources (just to name a few). My prelude to the book . . . eventually published a year later . . . gives testimony 9/11.
Even though the book is out of print, the testimony is still there. The book is still there. And I hope some people are reading it.