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Acknowledgements & Gratitude
The Blue Beacon took a wide community to bring to fruition, so here are some folks and stuff to whom I owe thanks.
The Blue Beacon was written and produced by me, Jordan Green.
Map by Chaim Holtjer.
Artworks were generated by Midjourney with prompts from the author.
For Mindy and Lana Green.
Dr. Mindy Green, MD, was there from the beginning of this, and I miss her. She believed in this story long before it took shape, and I couldn’t imagine I’d eventually write as a way to slip time and walk alongside her again. Eola Lightstripe is her own badger, but she’s certainly inspired by the boundless brilliance, joy, and abundant life Mindy brought everywhere she went and to everyone she knew.
This story is also for Lana, our daughter. Her heart for animals, art, characters, and storytelling—along with her keen mind—is my clearest inspiration in telling this well. Lana’s insight and help is woven through the The Blue Beacon.
I am also grateful to…
Karyn & Richard Green (aka Mom & Dad), for appreciation of beauty and creation, for frequent check-ins, for reading us stories aloud, for editorial notes and encouragement, for teaching us careful craft, for building a safe world around us, for loving God, for gentleness and love, and vastly more.
Tyler Green and Kailyn Smouse, for living these worlds along with me, for love and steadfast friendship, for being cool and funny, and vastly more.
Phil Smouse for being my battle buddy.
Rachel Drake for cheer and OHSU tours.
Lincoln, Ines, and Lewis for being future readers.
Bill and Debbie Green for art appreciation, steady support, and Vanagon rides to meet Brian Jacques.
Adam Green, Dan Green, Emily Tobin, and David Green for being the finest of family to grow and laugh and play with.
Graig Flach for faith & intellect, and an early passion for fantasy books.
Coleen Davis for inspiring greatness and living it herself.
David Flach for care and support for this work early on.
Vic Flach, Jr., for lifting up the gift of artistry.
Dr. Lewis H. Flach, DMD, for being the greatest of grandpas.
John Bachman, James Carter, and Stephen Himes, for prompting the early drafts and for being adventurous friends.
Bill and Karlene Bachelor for their love of animals and for caring for us so well.
Ashley Kennel, for added momentum, constant fellowship, and tenderness.
And to many more wonderfully made folks…
Top Tier Readers: Howard & Michelle Andrews, Barry Arreola, Sarah & Trevor Asay, Jonah Attebury, Molly & Liam Barrans, Jenifer Bowman, Aimee Delap, Dave & Karla Delap, Craig & Gloria Drake, Kim Fisher, Jean & Mat Gradias, Ben & Jordan Griffin, John & Mary Jane Kennel, John & Damiana King, Henry Longan, Alishan Merjanian, Jon Mark Moorington, Jason Nolan, Blythe Nordbye, Sara Oyela, Russell Pitman, Jody Rutherford, Lori Schlott, Kathy Schweitzer, Shawn Strannigan, Tiffany Taylor, Jeremy & Cori Veatch, Lisa Marie Wagner, wdngirl2, Marilyn Weisenburg, and Patrick & Rachel Wilson.
Fellow artist & writers who were especially encouraging or inspiring: Amanda Allquist, Sarah Asay, Breena Bard, John Blase, David Burke, Martin Cizmar, Maurice Cowley, Alli Dahlgren, Aaron Donley, Mary Everitt, Terrell Garrett, Chad Gibbs, Dan Gibson, Glory Guy, Deborah Hocking, Chaim Holtjer, Jennifer Jackson, Aaron James, Cody Kimmel, Seth King, Shane Leavy, Taylor Leonhardt, Andrew Maudlin, Susan McChesney, Rick McKinley, Donald Miller, Levi Rogers, Laura Stanfill, Santino Stoner, Jay Taylor, Lisa Wagner, Alyssa Walker, and the inimitable Donna White.
Those who provided business advice and friendship both tender-hearted and gold-standard: Trevor Asay, John Blase, Tara Brown, Chris Hayes, Bryan Norman, and Jeremy Veatch.
Other inspiring creatures, places, and works of art
By God’s grace I live in a beautiful place—Portland, Oregon—which encourages creative individuality, love for the created world, and a wondrous setting for stories.
To Hillsdale, for being a welcoming neighborhood.
To the Oregon Zoo, for having so many otters.
To all the creatures I had the pleasure of observing up close: Rachel, Red, Shawon & Bo, Gerb, Ryu, Nöel, Athena, Rory, Lola, and Stampy.
To Lily, for being nearby all these years.
To Teddy and Leo, for being good boys.
There’s nothing new under the sun, and this story is cobbled together from too many artworks to count, but I do owe gratitude to the creations of: Lloyd Alexander, Ryan Berkley, Beverly Cleary, Michael Dante DiMartino, Anthony Doerr, Brian Doyle, Makoto Fujimura, René Goscinny, Matt Groening, Brian Jacques, Mary Karr, Bryan Konietzko, C.S. Lewis, George R.R. Martin, Colin Meloy, Moses, Robert C. O’Brien, Andrew Peterson, David Peterson, Richard Powers, Patrick Rothfuss, Lily Seika Jones, Kim Stafford, J.R.R. Tolkien, Albert Uderzo, Pendleton Ward, and William Zinsser.
I’m likewise indebted to The Cartoon Network, Dark Horse Comics, DC Comics, Disney, the Fallout franchise, The Elder Scrolls: Legends, Image Comics, Marvel Comics, Pixar, Sid Meier’s Civilization series, Studio Ghibli, and whoever at Takara created Battle Beasts.
Some musicians I listened to while I wrote: Neko Case, Andy Gullahorn, Haim, Curtis Harding, Taylor Leonhardt, Lucius, Nathaniel Rateliff & the Night Sweats, Radiohead, Spoon, the War On Drugs, and Waxahatchee.
In research, four books were constant companions:
Peterson Field Guide to Mammals of North America, 4th Ed. by Fiona Reid
Mammals of the Pacific Northwest: From the Coast to the High Cascades by Chris Maser
Wildlife of the Pacific Northwest by David Moskowitz
Oregon Geographic Names by Lewis A. McArthur & Lewis L. McArthur
Finally, and above all else, my gratitude is to God, the Holy Creator who made all things, who loves each of us, and who set in me a passion for a storytelling and words. The Holy Spirit is the root of my creativity, Jesus Christ is the root of my hope and rescue, and all glory is due to our Abba, forever and ever. Amen.
From the depths of my heart, thank you for being part of this.