Anne McCaffrey has died.
It’s moments like these that I’m grateful for the Internet and for services like Twitter that make it easy to see that McCaffrey affected other people as profoundly as she affected me. I don’t know if I could adequately describe her impact on me otherwise. But you know. Most of you already know.
I devoured the McCaffrey’s Pern books in high school and continued to re-read them through college and beyond. The first three books plus the three Harper Hall books were my favorites. And because I wasn’t a writer then, I expressed my fannish adoration with art.
|From Old Art|
Later, in college, I became engrossed in the (unsanctioned) Pern MUSH, my first massively multi-player online game. I still remember those evenings hunched over my amber and black monochrome monitor programming a little mechanical butterfly that would open its wings and flutter in the game if you gave it the right command.
I even dated a guy who loved Pern, and I made him this present one year: the two of us as harpers. I’ve kept this crude photocopy for 23 years now.
|From Old Art|
I will always remember F’lar and Lessa, Ruth and Jaxom, Masterharper Robinton and Menolly. I will remember Thread and the between. Anne McCaffrey taught me that science fiction can feel like fantasy, an idea that eventually inspired me to write Above World.
She’s the reason I’ve dreamed of having a fire lizard for the last 30 years, and I’m sorry she’s gone. What a life, though. What a legacy! The harpers will be singing her praises for generations to come.