Kevin Donaghy’s ‘Stories of Cancer and Hope’ success backed by cancer charity Maggie’s as new e-book version launches
Kevin Donaghy, from Melrose, earlier this year unveiled a print edition of ‘Stories of Cancer and Hope’, which aims to provide hope to those affected by cancer through the real-life stories of others. He wrote his own personal story of his experience of being diagnosed with Stage 4 Melanoma, to share it with people to let them know they were not alone.
Kevin came up with the idea of asking others to recount their own stories and combine them into a book. The book features 39 personal stories of cancer and hope covering a wide range of cancers.
Thanks to thousands of pounds of donations from companies Kevin has known for a number of years Kevin turned his dream into reality. He published 1,500 copies of the book in May 2023 which he distributed free of charge to charities, organisations and individuals not only in Scotland and the UK but also around the world.
Kevin followed it up this autumn with another print run of 5,000 books, thanks to more contributions from his sponsors, which he allocated free of charge to over 70 different cancer charities and treatment centres.
He has now launched an e-book version of Stories of Cancer and Hope (2nd January) after securing a publisher to work with both himself and Maggie’s, with all profits (net proceeds after publishing and associated costs) going directly to Maggie’s.
Contributors to the book have come from all over the UK and include some well-known faces, from Labour MP Sir Chris Bryant to Nicola Nuttall, mother of brain cancer campaigner Laura Nuttall as well as friends of Kevin’s including Ricky Nicol, from Edinburgh, who co-founded Commsworld in the 1990s, before being diagnosed with throat cancer.
Kevin said: “I’m extremely grateful to Maggie’s for agreeing to support me with the latest and updated e-book edition of ‘Stories of Cancer and Hope’. They have already been a massive force behind the success of the print version of the book, having taken copies for all 24 of their centres across the UK.
“By doing this, they will make sure that those who come to the centre for support as they cope with their, or a loved one’s diagnosis, will be able to learn by reading the stories in the book from those who have been through what they’re going through, that they are not alone.
“But of course my sincerest thanks goes to the contributors to the book. I overcame the trauma of diagnosis by sharing my story. When I decided to put out a personal appeal, they replied to me, and were happy to tell all in their own stories – the tears and low points, as well as the laughter and high points.
“Sadly we have lost some of them on this journey of providing hope, but they are immortalised
in their words. Their tales have inspired me, and I hope that they continue to inspire others.”
Kevin said that he was also very grateful to Maria Carter at publisher Swan & Horn who had offered to publish the book after she and her husband Hugh received huge support from Maggie’s following Hugh’s cancer diagnosis.
Kevin continued: “I’m delighted that this book has been able to help people all over the world as they come to terms with cancer and the impact it has on their, their families and their friends lives. I’ve had people from the USA to Australia telling me how it helped them realise they were not alone, something which I have found both humbling and incredibly fulfilling.
“For instance, I recently met Mark Mitchell, who I’d never met before, at an industry event in November and he walked up to me and thanked me for publishing the book, which he found in the Glasgow Maggie’s centre. Mark had been diagnosed with Bladder cancer in late 2022 and said he found the book uplifting and wanted to thank me and the other contributors, for helping people to not feel alone with cancer. ”
Maggie’s Chief Executive, Dame Laura Lee, said: “We have been delighted to have
Kevin’s inspirational ‘Stories of Cancer and Hope’ in our centres, and to share the book with those who come to us for support. The ‘Stories of Cancer and Hope’ books are brilliantly honest, uplifting and very much in line with the support we offer at our 24 centres across the UK.
“Now we are extremely proud to support Kevin’s new e-book. I hope the new e-book can continue to inspire and comfort people living with cancer by reading the stories of others with similar experiences.
“And by buying an e-copy, they are helping us support people at possibly the hardest time of their lives, for which we are very grateful.”
Kevin added: “As I’ve said before, ‘Stories of Cancer and Hope’ is a series of real-life
experiences, nothing is sugar-coated in any way. But alongside the wrecking ball of cancer, there is hope, pathos and some humour which I believe will provide real hope to others currently affected by cancer, or those yet to be diagnosed in the future.”Stories of Cancer and Hope’ is available to buy at