Adrian Gebben and his grandson Michael proudly show his novel, published just in time for his 87th birthday celebration.
The original manuscript for Wings of a Dove alongside the published book.

Lifelong Dream Realized in Time For His 87th Birthday Celebration

by Michael Gebben

In 2012 I decided to start walking outside to lose weight. One day in January of 2012 it was too cold to walk outside, so I decided to go walk at the mall. To my surprise, my grandfather was there.

I found out he had been walking there for years. In fact, walking was a major part of his life since around 30 years old.

My grandpa really believed in the power of walking to help with health and longevity, and he told me he got that belief from his father. Every day Monday-Friday from 8:00-8:45 am, my grandpa would walk at the mall, and from then on I would walk with him pretty much every day that I was in town – from January 2012 until the Summer of 2017 – when my grandpa had some issues that started the decline of his health.

We talked about many different things while we walked, and one day I decided to ask him two questions.

I first asked him if there was anything in his life that he regretted doing. He could not come up with anything.

Then I asked him if there was anything he regretted NOT doing. He instantly had an answer –  not getting his novels published.

You see, when my grandpa was writing his novels, it was much more difficult to make a living, and basically, there were “gatekeepers” preventing most people from really having success. He tried for years to get his novels published and was told they’re great, but the timing is wrong, there is no market for them right now.

My grandpa has dementia now and can’t remember very much. You can tell the only things he remembers are what has been repeated over and over for decades, and one of those things is being disappointed that he never got published.

My dad told me on January 3 of this year that my Grandpa only had about 1-2 weeks left to live.

On Saturday, February 3, I had a lightbulb moment. I wondered if I could get my Grandpa’s novel published, printed and in his hands by the next Saturday, February 10th when we were going to have a party for his 87th birthday! I wanted my grandpa to know that his dream did come true and that he is an author and a published one at that!

I called my best friend and incredible author, Steve Sisler, who has a publishing company, and asked if it was possible? At first he said there was no way. Then said. “You know what I think we could make it happen.”

I said 2024 was going to be a year of Massive Imperfect Action. Well that’s exactly what it took to get this done! Through a concentrated effort over two days of more than 20 hours spent scanning his manuscript and formatting the book, Steve and I managed to get it published and received copies from Amazon just in time for him to celebrate his 87th birthday with his family!

It was truly a magical moment! We even did a book signing!!

Here is the description of his novel, Wings of a Dove, as featured on Amazon, so you know what it is about:

In 1953, Lt. Perry Cochran defied orders in Korea. Nine years later, a covert mission in Laos puts his life on the line. A C-130 flight turns chaotic, leaving Perry stranded. With the help of a brave American doctor and his alluring niece, Eve, Perry fights to survive. Love sparks tension, and a vengeful ranger threatens their lives. Perry must face danger once more to save them all, proving to himself in a high-stakes battle against time. Will Perry and Eve’s passion survive the ultimate test? Dive into this gripping tale of love and peril in “Wings of a Dove.”

When asked if my grandpa thought of himself as an author, that answer was ultimately no, because he never got his novels published.

I believe that if you write, you are an author. If you draw, you are an artist. If you paint, you are a painter. If you sing, you are a singer. Your identity as a creator is not defined by your financial success, accolades, or external validation – like getting a novel published. You embody that role simply by engaging in the act of being/doing it.

My grandpa dreamed his whole life of being a published author. He dreamed his whole life of getting to write for a living. He never got to write for a living, and he stopped writing, I believe, because he got tired of getting beat down and being told, “You’re good, but the timing is wrong.” I believe my grandpa wasn’t encouraged enough to keep writing and to not worry whether anything comes of it. Creating/writing fills the soul! And there are no gatekeepers anymore stopping you from doing what you love, and even doing it for a living if that’s what you want. You can share your art with the world!

My grandpa has been a huge inspiration in my life, and he even called me the “Jumpstarter!”

I love helping people to keep believing in their dreams. As the band Journey says in one of their classics…”Don’t stop believing!” And I’ll add, keep dreaming, you just never know when your dreams will come true, ’cause it just takes one to believe and I believe in you!

I would love it if you would help my grandpa Adrian Gebben become a Best Seller on Amazon with his novel Wings of a Dove! It already has 5-star reviews, including this one:

Being my first war fiction, I absolutely loved this story! It had action, it had romance and it surely kept me on my toes! Even after I’d go to bed, I kept thinking about the story and what’s going to happen next. You’re almost on the edge of your seat through the whole book and I definitely held my breath at times. The ending was wrapped up nicely and everyone got what they rightfully deserved! The dedication is so sweet and the purpose for this publishing made it even more heartfelt. Definitely recommend and spread the word!

I also want to share the dedication I wrote at the beginning of the book…


“Dream on, dream on, even when you’re afraid all your dreams may be gone, just dream on, dream on! When the world says you’re crazy, just tell them they’re wrong…When the world says you’re crazy, just tell them they’re wrong and dream on…” -Ben Rector

My dream is that no one’s dreams die in their hearts, heads, or hard drives.

Please share and spread the word for all the dreamers out there! Keep dreaming you just never know when your dreams will come true.

Thank you, Steven Sisler, for helping me publish this book and make my grandpa’s dream come true, where he could touch and feel a real book, that he wrote!

And I also want to let you know, that as of today (February 17) my grandfather is still alive and doing quite well. Here’s the link to purchase the book: