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MINNEAPOLIS — Best-selling author Vince Flynn is delaying his next Mitch Rapp thriller, "Kill Shot," until February while Flynn battles prostate cancer.
Flynn posted a statement on his website Tuesday telling his fans he is fighting fatigue from radiation treatments and finding it difficult to focus on the book.
"I have never missed a pub date and it pains me to come up short on this one. I desperately wanted to keep my commitment to my publisher, the trade, and most important, you," Flynn said in his statement.
The Twin Cities-based author said he was hoping to get "Kill Shot" out in time for Christmas. But he said doctors have told him he will not be back to full strength until November. "After that, they say I will feel better than I've felt in two years," Flynn's statement said.
Rather than hand in a "substandard Rapp novel," Flynn said he decided with his agent and his editor to delay publication until Feb. 7, 2012.
"I apologize for any inconvenience this has caused you, and I promise that I will do my best to make sure the extra months are worth the wait," Flynn's statement said. He closed by thanking fans for their "patience, prayers, and goodwill" and told them to "Keep the faith!"
Flynn's longtime editor, Emily Bestler, said in an interview Wednesday that what Flynn has written so far "is absolutely fantastic and there's no reason to rush it."
Flynn, who self-published his first book "Term Limits" in 1997 before landing a publishing deal, has been averaging a book a year — something Bestler said "is a very hard thing to do."
Flynn earlier announced that he was diagnosed last November with stage three metastatic prostate cancer. His latest posting says Flynn and his doctors made the decision to begin radiation treatment in late July.
"I made it through the first half of my forty treatments with very few side effects, and then around September 1, fatigue began to set in. Once again I found it extremely difficult to focus on the book for more than an hour or two," Flynn's statement said.
"Kill Shot" follows the adventures of character Mitch Rapp, a counterterrorism operative, as he goes after those responsible for the bombing of a Pan Am flight over Lockerbie in 1988. It will be Flynn's 13th book.