I'm hoping you'll join me to make something good happen.
The New Book
Ever since I left Notre Dame in 1995 to pursue the unusual job of being a public philosopher, I've wanted to write a book full of ideas that had been transformative for me and that would also be genuinely life changing for readers. After 19 nonfiction books, I think I've finally managed to do so at a new level with the new novel, The Oasis Within.
It arrived as the biggest surprise of my life, and as the doorway to - so far - seven other much longer novels that are also now completely written and just awaiting a final edit and publication. The Oasis Within is a prologue to this series of longer books. My granddaughter christened the big series "Walid and the Mysteries of Phi," featuring the name of the main character and a Greek letter that in this context names both a mathematical ratio and a secret society that's unlike any group of people ever written about, and that's profoundly relevant to how we understand our own lives. I've learned more about life and its possibilities from the characters in these stories than I ever would have thought possible. I've also come to love the characters as if they were real: and in a way, they are.
You've most likely heard me tell the story. The first scene came to me uninvited, as a strikingly unusual, vivid daydream one morning in February of 2011. An old man and a boy were sitting in the sand under a palm tree, talking. They were in the desert in Egypt. It was the summer of 1934. I ran upstairs to my study to write quickly what I was seeing and hearing. I continued to transcribe this mental movie for four and a half years, never consciously devising a scene or plot twist or character. I just watched it all unfurl and did my best to describe what I saw and heard.
A Fellowship of the Mind
There's a concept in The Oasis Within that's become especially important to me - the idea that there can be a "Fellowship of the Mind" in our world, a loose collection of people who are fully open to discovering who they most deeply are, and what they can truly do with their talents and energies – kindred souls who help each other learn to see deeper patterns in events and to draw on otherwise neglected powers for creative accomplishment that can make a difference for their own lives and in their broader communities. I have an audacious hope that if this book gets into the right hands, all the stories in it and the subsequent series may help bring readers together into such a fellowship that can be uniquely powerful.
Our world is full of tangled problems that no one seems capable of solving, and of intransigent politics that rarely appear to rise above the level of schoolyard taunts. We need something superior to what we're already doing. And in a time when more people than ever are telling me they want their lives to really matter, we all need the right ideas and inspiration for the best path forward.
Here's what I've realized and now want to act on: You, dear reader, know many people I'll likely never meet. You have a sphere of influence that I could never duplicate. If you've read The Oasis Within already and it's touched you, or even if you haven't yet, but are willing to, and you then find it so resonant that you're moved to go even farther and use it to touch the lives of the people around you, I have a proposal.
I want to get this new book into the hands of as many good people as I can. I don't care about Amazon rankings or bestseller lists or author royalties at this stage. I just want this book to have the impact it's capable of having. And the challenge is now mine, since to get it into the world, I've left the realm of established publishers and have "gone rogue" and created my own imprint for all these books. They were too "different" for the literary agents I've worked with in the past. They couldn't be put into an easy genre box for mainstream publication. Or so I was told. And I knew I wouldn’t change them from being what they are. I believe in them exactly as they’ve come to me. So, I've launched my own publishing initiative, in such a way that allows me to offer you a proposal.
If you can commit this month to buying at least 25 copies of The Oasis Within to give to friends, family, and associates, I can provide them for you at a cost of $7 a book, including shipping, for the beautiful paperback that retails for $14.99. Anyone who orders 50 or more at this price will also get, as a gift from me, the first long novel in the subsequent series, a book called The Golden Palace, which will be fully edited and ready before the New Year. Some friends who’ve ordered 25, 35, 50, 65, 100, or even 200 copies of the book to give away as gifts within their own circles sparked this idea. They were excited to pass the book on to their clients or friends, or to others they come into contact with in the course of their daily lives.
What You Can Do
Here's what you can do, if you'd like to partner up with me in this way. By sending an email to TomVMorris(at)aol(Dotcom), let me know how many copies you'd like to order to give to others. It could be 25 or any number above that. Include in your email your best mailing address. I'll place the order for you right away and have the books shipped directly from the printer to you. I'll then email you an invoice that you can pay by check. If your order includes copies for a book club, let me know and I'll make myself available for a short email of Q&A for the members, or even a brief Skype time with them. I've never done anything like this before. But I think the time is right.
During the holidays, you'll likely be giving presents to people you care about and who make your life better. I hope you'll join me in spreading philosophy by giving The Oasis Within to some of those people, inviting them into a fellowship of the mind and heart that can enhance their lives and perhaps even the world around them a little more than would otherwise be possible.
It felt as if the characters of these books chose me to bring them and their lessons into the world. If you can help me share them in your own part of the world, it would be great. If you've already ordered lots of copies, or in case that's not possible right now, or even if you're just not at all moved to join me in this way with such an endeavor, I hope you'll simply help the books find their mission in the world by mentioning them to others. There's a lot of work for them to do in our time.
Thanks so much for considering this distinctive form of partnership!