13 August 2023

I plopped down in my recliner last night to pound out a post about the cats, because they amuse the snot out of me and are cute as hell. But, I checked my email before I did, and after that, I just did not feel like it.

There was email from my editor's address, and I clicked on it without reading the subject header. I wish I had, so I could brace myself.

It was from her grandson, Brian. He interviewed me about Not About the Cookies when he was in 8th grade and she'd made him promise to be the one to contact me when it was "time."

Yesterday, it was time. Tracy tripped in the kitchen, hit her head, and was likely gone before she hit the floor. And honestly, that was probably how she wanted to go. Quickly, no prolonged illness, nothing like the drawn out passing of her son, Eric.

I will miss her.

She retired from publishing in the early 2000s and began editing for me in 2003. I knew upfront she was more a fan of the stories than perfect grammar and syntax (and it shows in a few of my books) but she extended an offer--let me be 2nd reader, after Mike, and I'll edit--and she definitely had suggestions that improved my work.

Because she was retired from the NY scene, she only worked with a few writers, never more than 4, and I was honored to be someone she never turned down.

She liked the Charybdis series, but she loved Wick. I'm not sure there would be as many books if she hadn't pestered for the next one as soon as one went to print. Hyrum became her favorite, and in her email Brian said, "She also said that if you ever decided to end the series, Vicat needs a major sendoff. I think she saw a little of herself in Vicat."

I can see that. Vicat refused promotions because she was in a place where she was needed, helping newbies get their footing. When she finally agreed to a change in jobs, it was first to annoy the snot out of the Emperor while protecting him, and then to protect his toddler.

Tracy's retirement life centered around helping newby and some established writers get just a bit more out of themselves. She helped us all get firmer footing and then encouraged us to fly.

Her life was long, she lived to 86, and it was happy; I think she was content with what she'd created out of life, and would kick my ass if I mourned.

But dammit, Battleax, I am going to miss you.


Anonymous said...

I know I don’t know her but she sounded like a great lady. My condolences for the loss of your friend and to all her family and friends.
Carrie aka Anonymous

RosieS said...

Sending hugs to all who are feeling the loss of Tracy. {{{Thumper}}}

Anonymous said...

She sounded like a great lady. I’m so sorry for your loss and for her family’s loss.
Pam Stanley

Just Ducky said...

She loved what she did and encouraged writers to be better. Sorry for your loss.

Random Felines said...

How heartbreaking. I'm sorry for you and her family. She sounds pretty amazing

Susan Royston said...

So sorry , Karen. She sounds like a great person and we need all we can get

messymimi said...

My condolences for your loss. It's always too soon.