David Hartwell, giant of science fiction, is in critical condition. Kathryn Cramer announced on social media yesterday that David suffered “a massive brain bleed and is not expected to recover.”
David bought my first novel. I met him at ReaderCon in, it must have been 2010—a handshake and a smile and a shirt-and-tie combo you could see halfway across the galaxy. A friend told me about David’s first con as an editor: showing up with suitcases full of books he spent the entire weekend giving out to people. Without him, I wouldn’t be here. I’m not unique in that respect. Without him, this would be a different field. I’ve had five years of discovering new reasons, each time I met the guy it seems, to be awed by who David is, and who he’s worked with.
And he was a good human being. David told me, as I was freaking out after the release of my first book, feeling crushed and insignificant, that the best thing any new author could do was go to conventions and enjoy themselves. It helped. One of my first real conversations with him revolved around his concern for an aging friend. He’s loyal, and charming, and he builds, and he has the best damn ties.
My thoughts and prayers are with his friends and family.