Evidently Robert Aspirin has died, which is just too damned bad. I read his Myth books with great fondness as a teenager, and his Phule books with surprising fondness as an adult, and was happy to go back to the Myth books until one of the later co-authored ones pointed out, in the foreword, an idiosyncracy of Robert’s that had been retained despite the co-authoring, and having had it pointed out to me, I could literally no longer read his books because I found it so irritating. Regardless, I have nothing but fondness for everything I read prior to being made aware of that idiosyncracy, and I still remember finally cluing in (possibly via reading it somewhere else) that the Woof Writers were Wendy and Richard Pini. It still makes me giggle.
I never met him, and I would’ve liked to. There’s a part of me–a 12 year old part of me who didn’t actually get that anthologies are things created individually by many people over large distances–which still looks back on the Thieves’ World writers/world as … something quite magical, something that my teenage self, growing up in Alaska, envied and wanted to be a part of: writers who were working together to create new worlds and new stories and who, to my mind, belonged to a close-knit community. I didn’t like Thieves’ World at *all*, but I loved the idea of the community that had created it, and I would’ve very much liked to meet the man who brought *that* idea into my life.
(The idiosyncracy behind the cut, because somebody always asks, and because I don’t want to potentially make it impossible for other people to read his books.)
He never used “said” when another word would do, even if “would do” was stretching it to a painful extreme. I must’ve read fifteen of his books without noticing that, but I really couldn’t get through the book following that foreword, and haven’t read anything of his since. I’m kind of sad about that, really, because I /did/ love the Myth books. They’re just silly, and I like silly.