I’ve been an avid reader and fan of Science Fiction and Fantasy for most of my life. It is the genre that really grabbed my attention and nurtured my love of reading and books. They are the books and movies that gave me refuge in the most challenging times of my childhood. It is responsible for a myriad array of fan groups and wildly devoted followers. Yet for me, I never quite belonged to one of these groups. I have friends who shared interests and loved many of the same things, but never really a group of people I knew because of a shared love of a book or series of books, movies or TV shows.
That changed for me a few years back when my wife the aspiring author found herself a mentor in local author and all around amazing lady Gini Koch. Suddenly I was part of The Alien Collective so named for her Alien Series. I rather came at it sideways as I didn’t start reading the series right away. Eventually I had to start reading so I could understand all the references to the diverse worlds in the series rather than sit around clueless. I have come to enjoy the series though I am still quite a bit behind.
I recently started connecting more with the various fans on Facebook. One of these was devoted fan Elizabeth “Beth” Vrabel. She was part of the Collective so long that Gini herself doesn’t remember exactly when she joined. Sadly Beth died suddenly on Sunday. I’ve read several moving goodbyes from people who knew her far better than I. She supported numerous Kickstarter projects that included Gini Koch in their number, often grabbing up the opportunity to name a character in whatever story Gini was presenting to us. I wish I had known her better. I know even through our little online interactions she brightened my life and had an even bigger impact on the lives of those who knew her better and longer.
So I puzzle over how to say goodbye to someone I barely knew. I try once again to remember to tell those I care about just how important they are to me. I continue to do what I can to help promote those creative types around me that have become valued friends. I move forward with life, but know that there is one less fellow fan to share a love of books with. Thank you Beth for all that you shared.
Till next time.
See you among the stacks,