A message from the author.
I’m Mark, a retired businessman, married with three children and three grandchildren.
Born and schooled in the UK, after graduating with a business studies degree I spent four years working in Asia followed by ten years in the USA. My family and I moved back to the UK in the early 1990s.
Given my lack of formal financial qualifications, you might wonder why I think the MYFE series of books may be of value to you. The answer is, perhaps like you, I approached the saving and investment markets innocently and naively. In truth, I was too busy getting on with life to prioritise paying attention to my financial future. Big mistake.
And yet, this initial lack of knowledge about financial matters is one reason why I can now ask the questions to which so many of us need straight answers – and too rarely get!
Whilst my name is on the front cover, that’s only because I wrote it. I couldn’t have written anything without the many dedicated, talented and gracious people who have also been involved in bringing these books to life.
The information in the MYFE series of books is based on my own experience, research and opinion. It’s my hope that a book written by someone like you, and for you, will be of real practical help and lasting value to you and your family.
At the age of 15 our son was diagnosed with a brain tumour.
Like all parents given such news, I will never forget the utter devastation and sheer terror of the moment. We were lucky, our son survived. He’s now 35, married and fully recovered. But ever since that life shattering moment I’ve sought to find a way to thank those who saved his life.
Despite the Herculean efforts of medical staff and ongoing research, too many don’t survive or don’t fully recover from the after-effects of such intensive brain surgery.
As with all cancers, the challenge with brain tumours is that they can only be treated reactively (after they have grown). Despite the dedication and – often miraculous – skills of the surgeons, the medical community still seeks the secrets to predicting and preventing tumours.
It is to this continuous research as well as the innovative new treatments that I ask you to consider donating. It seemed to me if I could create something worthwhile and free for you, you might in turn donate to my favoured charity. A kind of virtuous circle – I hope!
The story behind the MYFE books.
Before retiring it was important to establish if my wife and I had sufficient funds for the years ahead. The financial adviser we spoke to said we did, but I needed to be sure.
And so I began to investigate our financial situation. It was only then my eyes were opened to the mistakes I’d made during our saving and investing journey. The biggest blunder was not appreciating the value of time; the longer you give your investments to grow the better off you’ll be – and at less risk.
I started writing a memo to my kids to help them avoid the same easy-to-make (but foolish and avoidable) mistakes. Initially the memo was just a series of do’s and don’ts. But like most kids, they weren’t going to do what I said simply because I’m their dad. I had to evidence my reasoning.
The first book I wrote was over 350,000 words with 150 images. That’s not a book, it’s a doorstop! No one would read it. So, I’ve spent the last 18 months editing and updating my research into three bite-sized books.
After showing these books to some friends, I was asked if their kids could have copies. Hence the idea was born of making the MYFE series of books available to everyone.
The books have many illustrations to explain the various concepts and are laid out in a magazine format to make the information more engaging. The illustrations are also a means of making the stories more accessible to people with dyslexia for whom I have created downloadable editions. What’s more, if you’re short of time, just look at the infographics, they tell their own story.
The MYFE books are free to download. They are not a money-making exercise. However, I do ask if you find them helpful, to please consider donating to The Brain Tumour Charity.