Thanks, Dad.

In honor of Father’s Day, we’re celebrating Gary Kinder, the writer, the researcher, the ultimate entrepreneur. He’s interviewed Jack Ford, written a New York Times best seller, captivated campfires with his epic storytelling, and raised two pretty decent daughters. Here are the top three pieces of advice we’ve absorbed from him, even though he didn’t know he was giving advice:

1. Be Curious. As an acclaimed non-fiction writer, he always said you go to the scene of where the story occurred, not because of what you think you’ll find, but because you don’t know what you’ll find. Most of what we learn is never what we expect to learn, so stay curious.

2. Every word should work for you. Every word should be on the page for a reason. An unnecessary word in your writing detracts from the meaning of the useful words. Removing it will strengthen the rest. Although letting go is difficult, this advice translates to many other parts of life—the weak link on the team, the clothes in your closet you don’t wear, time commitments that don’t enhance your life.

3. Don’t worry about other people. From starting his own business teaching legal writing, to writing three non-fiction works of art, to developing unprecedented editing software, he has never been afraid to chart his own course. And we are forever grateful for his adventurous, unwavering example. We all have unique gifts to bring to the world, so why would we fit into the same box as anyone else?

Since we’re in the business of thanking people, thank you, Dad, for giving us the courage to do what we love and for inspiring us to start a business of our own.