A while back, I faced a fellow over coffee who opened our conversation with the news that he had about 18 months before a thing called myeloma killed him.

We were in a hospital cafeteria, where he was taking a break between patients. I was writing a piece on cancer. Since he was both a physician and a cancer patient, a mutual acquaintance thought he’d be good for me to meet.

I had never spoken to a condemned man before. I realized that I had dropped my pencil and my mouth was open.

The interview went well. I got good stuff. He finished his coffee and left to complete rounds.

Three years later, I saw his ghost at a party. There was Jim Tamkin, hale and hearty, and laughing at me because my mouth was open again.

He had gone to see the five best-known myeloma specialists in the country. He had pooled their recommendations, worked through the science, carved a path, and there he was.

He told me he had a strategy that any myeloma patient could use.

Thus began the project that led to The Myeloma Survival Guide and its introduction at the annual meeting of the American Society of Clinical Oncology on May 31st. It is endorsed by the nation’s leading myeloma treatment specialists, whose names and testimonies take up the first three pages.

Let Jim and me explain the terms you’ll need to know. Tell you about the new, better treatments. Help you make good decisions. Save you money and time.

It’s a short, easy book. Dive in.