Happy Father’s Day!

Today is Father’s Day, and since romance novels are all about heroes, it seems only right to take a day here to mention the first hero many a kid– hopefully — encounters: a father.

From my dad, I inherited enough engineering DNA to make me a plotter rather than a pantser. I got from him a love of deserts (“eroded dirt” as my tree-loving mother calls them) and desserts. He taught me how to catch garter snakes — and taught me to leave them alone. He passed on to me a hefty dose of his sense of humor which I in turn pass to my heroes.

He also gave me good advice over the years, which I’ll share with you:

“Always pursue your dreams, or at some point your dreams will end up pursuing you.”

Inspiring yet mildly menacing, like all the best advice. It contrasts poignantly with the advice a friend got from his father when we were all in our early 20s: “Fergit yer dreams.” (My friend’s dad wasn’t a hick but he was intoxicated at the time of the advice, hence the slurring.) What kind of bitter sorrow drives a man to say such a thing to his son?

“Success will come with patience and persistence.”

This advice made me laugh because my paternal DNA lacks the chromosome for patience. I wish I’d listened anyway. Persistence is probably the more critical component of success, but patience makes the wait more pleasant.

“We love you and will always be here for you. But don’t move back home.” (Paraphrased)

I figure he saw a nature show about the papa bird kicking the baby bird out of the nest. But really, giving his kids the space to spread their wings and the freedom to fall must be a scary moment for a loving father. But then he gets to remodel the empty bedroom into a home office, so it’s probably worth a few sleepless nights.

“The key is to enjoy life while you work to reach your dreams. That way, the path becomes as rewarding as the objective.”

This is advice I struggle to remember every day. Or at least every other day. Once a week, minimum. Enjoy. Work. Dream. Good balance. Thanks, Dad.

Having a loving, supportive, smart, interested father is a great gift. What’s the best advice your dad gave you?

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