A few days ago, I lost a very dear friend. She had sickle cell anemia, but she never let it define her and lived life to the full. She is an inspiration to me. The day after I discovered this tragic news, I found out I had been awarded Arts Council funding to finish my novel. It felt a little like that was my friend saying “OK, Emma, now you have your chance to be able to do what you really believe in, what you’ve been working for all these years.” I am honoured and thankful.