I’m on the cover of today’s Independent on Sunday, having been named the most influential LGBT person in Britain by the Pink List 2013. I’m so pleased my work and my way of doing things, positively, has been recognised. I’d like to thank the wonderful people in my life, so, in no particular order…
Mark, for putting up with me.
Mum, thanks for the tough love and for teaching me to be cheeky.
Aunty Ray, for teaching me to always be kind.
Mamma Jo, for being mother superior.
Kenny, for filling a void.
Aunty Louise and Uncle John, for always being there for me.
Natalie, for being the coolest sister and sticking with me through thick and thin.
Sarah, for giving me guidance, being clever and putting up with my moods.
Roz, for being rather awesome at all times.
Jane Czyzselska, for being the first person to pay me for my writing and continued support.
Darren Scott, for giving me stability and access to free makeup.
Leng, for always encouraging me.
Janet, for your wisdom and adopting me for a while.
Louai, for introducing me to Almodovar when I needed escapism.
Blayne, for being the coolest little brother anyone could ask for.
Michelle, for delivering Blayne. And delivering me to Brighton in one piece.
Chelsea, for guiding me through the dark days.
Steffi, for being a crazy creative bitch and those 4-hour phone calls.
Vicky, for bringing me food when I couldn’t leave the house.
For Carmel and Sam and El and my Brighton girlies for letting me join the cool gang, for trips to Boots, lobster and pumpkins.
Cormac, for being someone I can trust with my life.
Rachael Mee, for being the best pal a gal can have – when I wasn’t yet the gal I am today.
CN Lester, for educating me and putting things in perspective.
Nathalie McDermott and Alana Avery, for being super lovely and doing what you do oh-so well.
Patrick and Dan, for teaching me how to pitch, treating me like a lady and not believing me when I tell you I’m a soulless bitch.
Piers Bradford, for believing in me and opening doors I didn’t know were there.
Stuart, Caroline and Ravi – for seeing something in me and taking the chance.
Tim Lusher – for commissioning my first broadsheet article and helping me grow as a writer.
Alice Lloyd and Joe Hallam for helping produce something to be very proud of.
Christine Burns, for always wishing me well, and inspiring me when I was depressed.
Cathy N, for being frank, fiesty and fierce.
Michelle Bridgman, for making me laugh.
Kathy, for editing advice, warmth and lunches in the Sun’s canteen.
Dr B, for surprisingly good advice.
Theresa, for believing me.
Calpernia, for being witty enough to give me a fresh perspective.
Lisa Markwell, Sarah Morrison, Katy Guest and Kim Watson, for seeing value in what I do.
Everyone who has ever messaged me with words of kindness, teachers along the way and social workers who kept me from the abyss. For anyone I’ve forgotton, too.
Julie Burchill, for writing Sugar Rush and making me want to move to Brighton, where it all began. And for highlighting bigotry and giving me a voice.
To all my lovers, for making me feel like a woman. Or a man. Depending on when we made love.
And to all my haters, people who do not wish me well, those who would try to hold me back because they resent the good things I now have in my life, those who made me feel ashamed, frightened and inferior… you make the biggest impact on me because you make me determined.