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 Sometimes Facebook can be a right bitch and hit you so hard in the feels with something so innocent as a birthday reminder. Judy009cropped

This morning it decided to tell me that it was Judy Bagshaw’s birthday. The feels came because Judy died in 2015, leaving behind a writing legacy that includes me and a hell of a lot of other people who are trying to follow her. She wrote romance stories that included female protagonists that were not ‘standard size’, positive stories in which their size was not part of the plot nor the subject of comic relief. From her I learned a number of things – how to stay positive in the face of adversity from your own self esteem, how to edit effectively and how to approach publishers. It is thanks in part to her (with Skyla Dawn Cameron taking credit too) that I got published in the first place.

OppositeAttraction_AuthorCopy_revised I never met her in person, though I always wanted to, but she was my mentor, a cheerleader and a self confessed fan of my work. She owned one of the ten ‘limited editions’ of Lurking Miscellany that came out of the first print run with the error on the cover. I would have sent her it for free (she helped edit parts of it) but she not only insisted on paying for it, she insisted on me signing it and sending it to her despite the fact she could have got it cheaper by Amazon. She even told me to add the international postage cost to the invoice (which I didn’t… I owed her at least that much).

That Facebook reminder this morning woke all these feelings in me again so I just had to share. I urge you to do her the honour of looking up one of her books and buying it. I feel it is the best way to celebrate her birthday.