Acknowledgements

by amymasson | @ddfalvo

The grace of God makes all good things possible.

After witnessing, firsthand, what it takes to bring a manuscript to completion, I will never again tear through a novel without a thought for the long hours and dedication involved. Writing may be a solitary occupation, but one cannot bring a novel to production without the help of many others along the way. Sometimes what is needed most is simple understanding as the writer’s fever takes over, and forgiveness, for the family meals that went missing because I was cooking up plots instead of dinner; for the hazy focus of listening to an inner voice instead of the one beside me; and for verbalizing ideas, over and over. Encouraging words, editing and feedback are the backbone of the process, keeping me, the writer, on task, mentally stable, and emotionally fed. It’s important to recognize the supportive individuals who made the StarDust saga possible.

My husband, Michael Falvo, for figuratively and literally giving me the space to pursue a dream, for his patience throughout the writing process that disrupts the normal flow of life in our household, and for being my rock. A note to anyone else reading this: Mike and I have a running debate–he wants credit for being my muse. I laugh at the idea of a strong, salt-of-the-Earth man inspiring flights of fancy–and yet, a piece of him lives in the heart of each hero in StarDust, because he is the best example of heroism that I know. <3

My daughter, Kallyn Falvo, for a willingness to read anything I wrote from the very start. You were my staunchest champion and the one who kept pushing me to keep at it.

My daughter, Lauren Falvo, who gave up lunch hours to hash out edits out over video chat. Your confidence in my project gave me confidence in my ability. I learned so much from your skillful editing.

Mike Kirkwood and Sandra Spiro of Kirkwood-Spiro Communications for providing my first Apple laptop, and subsequently opening the door to Scrivener — a powerful writing program that makes my life as a writer an absolute dream. Thank you also for the amazing graphics that grace this website and my business cards.

I come from a family of talented story-tellers and technical writers, who have generously made time for me, sharing their expertise along the way. Christine Urban, for racking up endless hours at Starbucks, proofing a final manuscript and developing a following among the regular coffee crowd. Susan Turner, and Nancy Lisiak, whose insights pushed me to work harder and restructure. Cheryl Sitko, who always finds time to field my S.O.S. emails. Teri White, who inspired the prologue.

Donna Cirignani, for bravely working through an unwieldy rough draft and convincing me that there was more than one book, and William Cirignani, a gifted mentor, for his expertise in the publishing industry and courage for saying the things that, at first, made me hate him (just kidding–no, seriously) and then, inevitably made me a stronger writer.

Douglas and Lisa Suriano for expertise on military matters.

Russ Kempton, Director of New England Meteoritical Services (NEMS) for his vast knowledge of meteors and comets.

Amy Masson, of Sumy Designs, for executing a brilliant website that is everything I envisioned and more.

Matt Scheiderer, of Pulse Arch Design Studio, for taking my hand-drawings and turning them into stunning graphics.