(Update: The feelings expressed in this post, while true at the time, were enmeshed in complicated issues which came to a head a couple of years later. I am no longer on positive terms with my family of origin.)
Today is my Dad's birthday, and this Sunday is Mother's Day, so I thought this would be a good time to pause for a moment and say how much I love my parents.
Sure we've had our disagreements, but they've always had my back, especially during particularly difficult and painful challenges I've faced. When it counted, they were there for me. And they've always been there for the small things, too. Whether it's putting up with a small child prattling on about He-Man and Transformers, or that day they realised their quiet, withdrawn teenage son actually wanted to spend his life writing stories and expecting people to pay him for the pleasure of reading them.
So, given the themes of parenthood present in Lady Raven, and the complex relationship Cora has with her mother, contrasted to that between Laden and his father (to say nothing of Idella's parent issues...), there was only one thing I could say in my dedication:
To my parents, who taught me to fly
My parents nurtured my every interest. From the toy crazes and hobbies that lasted maybe a month, to the long-term stuff like gaming, theatre, and writing. They put me through college. They gave Jen and I place to live when we came home from Manchester. They taught me to believe in myself and to never, ever stop fighting for the things I wanted.
Thank you, Mum and Dad. I wouldn't be the man I am today without you.
And, as it's Mother's Day this weekend, why not pick up a copy of Lady Raven for yours?