Saturday, December 31, 2011


It’s gotten to be a New Year’s ritual: taking a sad hour or so to reflect on the talented lights we've lost through the previous 12 months. With that reflection comes another: you can’t help but think about the stories that will never be told.

In the month of January we were sad to share news of the death of the doyenne of American Mysteries, Ruth Cavin. An editor at Thomas Dunne/St. Martin’s Press for more years than many people could remember, Cavin was 92 when she died.

In February, we reported on the passing of beloved Canadian humorist Eric Nicol (Script Tease, Old Is In) at the age of 91. Nicol was the author of 36 books as well as radio plays, stage plays and television musicals and was a three time winner of the Stephen Leacock Medal for Humour.

Also in February, came news of the death of yet another legendary editor. Children’s editor and publisher Margaret K. McElderry was 98 at the time of her death.

In March, well-loved children’s author Diana Wynne Jones (Howl’s Moving Castle, Dark Lord of Derkholm) passed away after a lengthy battle with lung cancer. The next month, brilliant and beloved director Sidney Lumet (12 Angry Men, Long Day's Journey Into Night, Serpico) died at age 86.

In June, Governor General’s Award-winning author Robert Kroetsch (The Studhorse Man, The Man From the Creeks) died in a car crash and in October, we lost Steve Jobs (lower right) at just 56. But November was a very cruel month: we said good-bye to both beloved dragonlady Anne McCaffrey (above left) and renowned poet, Ruth Stone.

Most recently, we were saddened to report on the passing of Christopher Hitchens. His death was not a surprise: he’d been publicly battling cancer for the last few years. Even so, his was a voice that I never wanted stilled: until the last, it was so vibrant, so contentious and so deeply charged with talent.

For all of these losses as well as the many we did not cover, we bow our heads.

Have we forgotten anyone in our accounting? Feel free to suggest additions in the Comments section of this post.

READ MORE: And So Comes the End,” by J. Kingston Pierce (The Rap Sheet).



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