Richest man in the cemetery


The life of an Indie author is at best unpredictable. Many people read your work and keep their valuable opinions to themselves, thinking that their contribution to an author’s journey is of no consequence. In fact, nothing could be further from the truth. Those brave enough to take the time to critique an author, invest great wealth into the next creative adventure. Something to remember when the author touches a reader’s raw nerve. If you enjoy an author’s work, tell someone else. If you don’t, then complain to the author.


The recent battles between the big publishers jostling for the lucrative top spot in a very competitive literary world has left the Indie population divided. Let’s dispel a popular myth before I continue. All authors make a good living from their writing. Ninety-five percent of authors make a few cents in the dollar from their work. So why then do authors write? And why does the pretty book in your hand cost so much? Maybe I can answer these questions in a short story.

I used to work for a man I will call Tom.

Tom was a visionary, an entrepreneur in the business world. He could see an opportunity, take a great risk, exploit it and make the opportunity pay in a big way. This wasn’t an isolated event. Time after time, he would see a need, figure out an angle and reap a harvest. In time, he built up an empire and became reasonably wealthy.

Tom was a gentleman and he cherished the contribution of his many employees. When he moved his business to a larger centre, his employees packed up their homes and followed him. Some had been with Tom for twenty plus years and were happy.

The happy bells of retirement soon rang in Tom’s ears and he wanted to sell the empire he had built up. He was used to an opulent life style and wanted to get the best price for his business. To sell the business as it was, would only render him tens of millions and he didn’t think he could live the remainder of his life on such a low sum. After all, he still had at least twenty good years left.

After much consultation with his advisers, he decided to radically expand the business to make it more attractive to an impressive buyer and add an impressive price tag. But this move would come at a cost to his employees, in a radical shake up. In a short time, most lost their jobs.

Tom employed a highly motivated and ruthless chief executive. In a matter of eighteen months, the business went from a family feel, to a market force that devoured businesses and people, and spat them out bloodied and beaten in its wake.

As the news of a multi-million dollar deal to purchase the company met Tom’s eager ears, another unexpected deal also reached his ears from his doctor. He was diagnosed with cancer and was dead twelve months later.

Just before he died, I heard one of his last remaining, long term employees say to him, “What good will it do, being the richest man in the cemetery?”

As I reflect on Tom’s true story, I ponder my own mortality and a verse from the Bible rattles around inside my head.

What does it benefit a man to gain the whole world and lose his soul?

Whatever side of the Indie debate you find yourself on, whether you are a high powered executive or a struggling author, when they finally close your eyes for the last time, what legacy will you leave and what hope will your work offer to those left behind?


Aunt Tabbie’s Wings just released and The Secrets of Black Dean Lighthouse coming soon.












Jack Dey, born to adventure, lives in the tropical rainforest of North Queensland, Australia. He has three loves in his life: Jesus; the Editor (his wife of 30 something years); and writing adventure novels. He is the author of MAHiNA; Paradise Warrior; Aunt Tabbie's Wings; The Secrets of Black Dean Lighthouse; The Legend of Ataneq Nanuq, The Valley of Flowers; La Belle Suisse (co-authored with Dodie La Mirounette); Zero; Naive; and Brindabella's Prophet. His latest book, Apostate, is currently being researched and written - and you can follow the story along chapter by chapter as he writes in real time! Jack writes only to please Papa God and considers his writing a ministry, demanding nothing from the reader for his e-books. If you like Jack Dey’s books and would like to support his ministry, please consider praying for the team at Jack Dey and telling your friends about his titles. New books are written with the intention of being a pencil in Jesus’ hand and bringing joy and encouragement to you, the reader.

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Posted in Books, Jack's Short Stories & Poems, Thoughts from Jack, Writing
2 comments on “Richest man in the cemetery
  1. Kathy Olson says:

    Well said friend. Look at who we remember when their lives are done…Nicholas, who was born a thousand years ago and orphaned at a young age,,who gave away all he had and all he could beg from others. Mother Theresa who showed love to the smelly, dirty wretched souls dying in the streets of India and gave away every pair of shoes that others gave her.Both were famous followers of Christ who gave all they had and all they could get in serving others. It makes one stop and think about what matters.


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Brindabella's Prophet_JackDey
Zero by Jack Dey; Christian fiction suspense
La Belle Suisse by Dodie La Mirounette and Jack Dey; Christian fiction suspense
The Valley of Flowers by Jack Dey - A gentle, easy read that will captivate your heart and hold it prisoner as it pleads with every word to take you deeper into an enchanted world of mystery, valour, romance and redemption - Christian Fiction available in paperback & ebook - I invite you to lose yourself in a sample chapter and enjoy reading it as much as I did writing it. Jack
The Legend of Ataneq Nanuq by Jack Dey - When injustice and fear collide it has a name… Ataneq Nanuq. A disturbing mystery - Christian Fiction available in paperback & ebook - I invite you to lose yourself in a sample chapter and enjoy reading it as much as I did writing it. Jack
The Secrets of Black Dean Lighthouse by Jack Dey - Adventure. Danger. Intrigue. Love. Courage. Redemption. Come on the journey but be warned, once you are onboard there is no turning back and the consequences will leave your head spinning. A haunting mystery with a sting in its tail - Christian Fiction available in paperback & ebook - I invite you to lose yourself in a sample chapter and enjoy reading it as much as I did writing it. Jack
Aunt Tabbie's Wings by Jack Dey - available in paperback & ebook
Paradise Warrior by Jack Dey - now available in paperback & ebook
Mahina by Jack Dey - released November 2013 - now available in paperback & ebook
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