A. I'd recently found out that my mother wasn't doing well health-wise. It was pretty serious and it scared me. I started thinking about how terrible it would be if anything happened to her. That night I was trying to sleep and couldn't stop thinking about my mom. I was thinking that people should have more time before they die. Time to be with their friends and family. That's when the idea of the letter came to me. The Deathday Letters. They give people one precious day to prepare. I sat there in the dark thinking for a while about what I'd do with the concept. Then from the dark, the voice of Oliver Travers began speaking to me. He was pretty insistent and cussed a lot. I got up--it was about one in the morning--and let him tell me about his family and friends. When I finally got to bed it was clear that he had gotten a Deathday Letter, and that the story was his. Six weeks later I finished that first draft and my brother and I went with my mom on her first trip to Europe. We've got another trip planned for next year.