Ursula K. Le Guin passed away on the 22nd, apparently. A big part of me knew this was coming for a long time; she my favorite author, and I knew she was up there in years. It wasn’t like some of her later stuff didn’t hint at her awareness of her encroaching mortality. So at least it wasn’t a harsh surprise, which was probably exactly her intent.

I’m very saddened but I don’t feel like she went anywhere; as in I’m sure she’s still alive in some capacity. It hasn’t really stopped me from getting choked up about it, which doesn’t happen often. Now all we have left down here are her books and words, and she left quite a few of those behind for us to build off of, learn from, and enjoy. I will, of course, have to forever remember her as the woman who sucker punched me in the stomach verbally for trying to be a literary sellout at the beginning of my fiction writing endeavors, putting the stop to much bullshit on my part.

Don’t get me wrong, I’m actually quite grateful for the rescue, it just hurt really bad at the time. So does the fact that I never managed to write her.

I’ve only really read the Earthsea Cycle, her rendition of the Tao Te Ching, and caught one of the film versions of The Lathe of Heaven. I’ve tried to get through a few others despite long-running then on-and-off (medical) trouble with reading, but her works have really shaped me into a completely different and better person. There’s not much else to say about it, or her work. She was a grandmaster at writing. Her writing was simply powerful, and wise.

Somehow I can see her scolding me even now from her new digs somewhere beyond. I realize now I’m going to have to push all the way through all the exercises in Steering the Craft.

I hope you’re having a blast wherever we all wind up wandering off to, Mrs. Le Guin.