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June 29, 2006

Jim Baen, 1943-2006
Posted by Patrick at 09:46 AM *

Yesterday, evidently. David Drake remembers his friend here. Cory Doctorow on Baen as a publishing visionary, here and here.

I didn’t know Jim at all well, and we had many differences of taste and outlook, but he was a publishing genius, radically correct about many of the things that matter. Trust your readers. Your audience is your most effective sales force. Publish what you love.

Comments on Jim Baen, 1943-2006:
#1 ::: Jackie Kessler ::: (view all by) ::: June 29, 2006, 10:02 AM:

Damn, damn, damn.

Goodbye, Jim. And thank you for everything you've done.

#2 ::: Fragano Ledgister ::: (view all by) ::: June 29, 2006, 10:20 AM:

Baen Books have been an important part of my sf reading. I'm very grateful to him for the books he's published and for his encouragement of writers who have given me a great deal of pleasure. His death is a sad moment.

#3 ::: beth meacham ::: (view all by) ::: June 29, 2006, 10:20 AM:

That is sad news. Ian Ballantine always said "the better the competition, the better the game," and he was right. The game is much the poorer today.

#4 ::: adamsj ::: (view all by) ::: June 29, 2006, 10:23 AM:

What Patrick said goes for me, with the added note that though I never met or spoke to the man, I owe Jim Baen a lot.

#5 ::: Kip W ::: (view all by) ::: June 29, 2006, 10:24 AM:

I hope they'll continue his e-text policy. It's a breath of fresh air in the paranoid "lock everything up" atmosphere that seems to prevail among providers of text/music/video/whatever these days.

#6 ::: Patrick Nielsen Hayden ::: (view all by) ::: June 29, 2006, 10:26 AM:

They are certainly continuing with all that: the Webscriptions, the e-texts unencumbered with DRM, the Baen Free Library of selected titles, and so forth.

#7 ::: Greg London ::: (view all by) ::: June 29, 2006, 10:30 AM:

Oh no. Sad news today.

#9 ::: Tim Kyger ::: (view all by) ::: June 29, 2006, 10:51 AM:

Crap.

Why is every one around me dying?! (Yes, I do know why...)

Crap.

#10 ::: Jo Walton ::: (view all by) ::: June 29, 2006, 10:53 AM:

I'm very sad to hear it. I never met him, but I think it's a great loss for the field.

The first time I became aware of his existence was with the "Destines" mmpb magazines, the first US SF magazines I ever saw, and which I adored with all my fourteen year old heart. All these years later, through many moves and many culls of the bookshelf, I still own ten of them. I know he did things that were more significant and which will deservedly get more attention in his obituaries, like starting Baen Books, making a success of e-books, and first publishing so many people who went on to become stars, but I will always feel grateful for those "Destines" volumes. They serialised _Expanded Universe_, they introduced me to Orson Scott Card, and best of all they kept popping up in Lear's Books in Cardiff, not every month but now and then. Seeing one on the shelf felt like finding treasure.

#11 ::: Zeynep ::: (view all by) ::: June 29, 2006, 11:04 AM:

This is sad news; I am sorry for the community's loss and wish peace to his family and friends.

#12 ::: Walter Hunt ::: (view all by) ::: June 29, 2006, 11:25 AM:

Sad to hear it. There should be a memorial thing at Worldcon this year, and possibly at Readercon next week.

Walter.

#13 ::: Teresa Nielsen Hayden ::: (view all by) ::: June 29, 2006, 12:03 PM:

The moment I'll always remember is the first time I saw an ad for the mass-market edition of 1945. The hardcover had been a disaster, almost universally panned by the critics; worse, it had gone out strongly, then returned in the ninetymumble percents.

IIRC, the headline on the ad was, "Read the book the critics don't want you to see!" (Something like that. It's been a while.) I was stunned with admiration. Jim Baen, undaunted, had come up with the best possible sell line, given the book's dreadful hardcover debut.

#14 ::: Scraps ::: (view all by) ::: June 29, 2006, 12:56 PM:

I hope you will forgive me re-saying what I've said on my own blog:

Jim Baen was a complicated man. I worked for him for a while, and I appreciate the employment he gave me at a time when I badly needed it; he was, on the whole, a reasonable and pleasant man to work for.

I just wanted to note, briefly, that Baen's place in science fiction was easy to summarize incompletely, and that this was regularly done not just by his detractors -- and he did publish some authors whose worldviews ranged (for me) from simpleminded to revolting -- but also by his advocates and fellow-travelers. Certainly, Baen represented the harder sf side of things, and the libertarian bent, and the individualist. But he often took these things, well, more seriously than others. For example, he was one of Joanna Russ's publishers, and when he was the editor of Galaxy, he serialized We Who Are About To... -- a novel that was a response to Poul Anderson's Virgin Planet and similar Lost Humans Who Must Re-establish Civilization stories, except in this one the protagonist understands that her place in the new heirarchy is to breed and be used until they all die (because the planet is truly inimical to them); instead she kills everyone and spends the last half of the book having reveries while she dies. It is one of the most controversial and misunderstood books in science fiction history, a book that was vilified by the conservative side of science fiction, and received a juvenile, fatheaded dismissive review from Spider Robinson, who (along with many others) described it as a book about a "coward". Why did Jim Baen publish it? My guess is that he saw that it was a strong individualist statement, and that was more important than whether it was a nasty feminist book or a book that criticised the politics of other books he liked. He also published a definitive mass-market edition of the Alyx stories, incorporating Picnic on Paradise, another mercilessly grim lost-people book that is one of the most wonderfully written books the field has ever seen, every page a stylistic delight.

Anyway, I don't have any way to wrap this up, really. Jim Baen was a complex figure, and I suspect the obituaries are going to reduce him more than obituaries usually do: especially those that praise him. He is a real loss, not just to traditional science fiction but to the field.

#15 ::: JBWoodford ::: (view all by) ::: June 29, 2006, 12:57 PM:

Re 1945, my understanding (based on an old rasfw thread that I can't find, curse my weak google-fu) was that Baen had estimated hc sales at some modest level and was overruled. It turned out that his estimate was veeery close to the actual sales numbers.

That reminds me, btw...from what Eric Flint has said on rasfw, Jim Baen was extremely good at that sort of estimation--that typical sell-throughs for Baen books run in the 90%+ range. How typical is that for the industry as a whole? Was Baen notably better than average?

#16 ::: Scraps ::: (view all by) ::: June 29, 2006, 01:05 PM:

(Now I'm unsure whether I'm right about Alyx. He definitely reprinted The Zanzibar Cat.)

#17 ::: Alex ::: (view all by) ::: June 29, 2006, 01:10 PM:

I can't say how much this sucks. It just... sucks. Suckily sucking sucky suckness ad infinitum. I'm wrecked.

Alex

#18 ::: Teresa Nielsen Hayden ::: (view all by) ::: June 29, 2006, 01:16 PM:

JBWoodford, it's always a touchy thing to talk about sales. Percent sold means different things in hardcover and mass market. Also, above a certain level, one of the things a high sell-through rate frequently means is that you didn't get out enough copies, and could have sold a lot more if you had.

I've heard various percents quoted on Baen's sell-through. I'm uncomfortable talking about it because I haven't seen hard figures. What I can tell you is that the highest unconfirmed overall sell-through rates I've heard quoted for Baen didn't approach 90%.

#19 ::: Xopher ::: (view all by) ::: June 29, 2006, 01:16 PM:

I didn't know him. I didn't even know, until his stroke, what his contributions to the field had been (not following these things as closely as I might have).

But now, thanks to ML, I do: a real loss for us all. My heartfelt condolences to all of you who did know him.

#20 ::: Mike Andrews ::: (view all by) ::: June 29, 2006, 01:40 PM:

Another Good'Un leaves us. We are diminished, folks.

God rest him very merry indeed.

#21 ::: Aaron Allston ::: (view all by) ::: June 29, 2006, 01:45 PM:

Damn.

I never clicked with Jim at a personal level, but I respected him greatly at a professional level. The industry is smaller without him.

#22 ::: JC ::: (view all by) ::: June 29, 2006, 01:47 PM:

Ow. Obviously, I didn't know him. But he's one of the people who made me into a reader and lover of books.

My thoughts are with all of you who did know him.

#23 ::: David Dyer-Bennet ::: (view all by) ::: June 29, 2006, 01:52 PM:

JBWoodford, I'm a little confused on *who* would have been overruling Jim on the HC sales estimate for 1945.

#24 ::: Eric Oppen ::: (view all by) ::: June 29, 2006, 02:54 PM:

Bloody hell. The field's been diminished greatly. I loved _Destinies_ and its successors, and liked a lot of what Baen published.

I always felt bad about _1945_---while it wasn't Hugo material, I didn't think it deserved the almighty roasting it got. A lot of that, IMNSHO, was due to the fact that the mainstream media loathed everything they thought Newt Gingrich stood for, and they'd have gone after anything with his name on it even if it knocked Shakespeare into a cocked hat.

#25 ::: Stefan Jones ::: (view all by) ::: June 29, 2006, 02:56 PM:

Be sure to read Drake's obit. He apparently knew he was in serious trouble, health-wise. Damn.

I suspect that "differences of taste and outlook" of the sort that Teresa mentions are what kept me from reading much of anything from Baen Books lately, but Destinies was a huge influence on me back in the day.

#26 ::: JBWoodford ::: (view all by) ::: June 29, 2006, 03:18 PM:

DDB, that thought had crossed my mind as well. I'd feel a lot more confident if I could've found the thread it showed up in...unfortunately, Eric Flint seemed to inspire massive thread overflow every time he got into a discussion.

Teresa, thanks for the information. It doesn't surprise me that I misremembered the numbers.

#27 ::: JJ Brannon ::: (view all by) ::: June 29, 2006, 03:20 PM:

My hunch regarding an overestimate on the print run of 1945, would be the former Speaker of the House.

#28 ::: JJ Brannon ::: (view all by) ::: June 29, 2006, 03:24 PM:

This is from John Ringo.

Go about half-way down to get the story about 1945.

http://alternatehistory.blogspot.com/

JJB

#29 ::: Scraps ::: (view all by) ::: June 29, 2006, 03:27 PM:

The mainstream media loathed Newt Gingrich? Not in the world I live in.

I think it's more that the bookchat media is deeply suspicious of novels by non-writer celebrities.

#30 ::: Stu Shiffman ::: (view all by) ::: June 29, 2006, 03:40 PM:

Sorry to hear about the death of Jim Baen. He was always a pleasant guy in company, and sure showed a lot of business savvy, even if he published a lot of SF that wasn't my sort of thang.

#31 ::: Mike Adams ::: (view all by) ::: June 29, 2006, 03:43 PM:

Sounds like Jim passed, not true or true?
Sadly 28 Jun 2006. Part of life is saying good bye. Just wish it was never so soon.

Did not know Jim directly, but did read who he helped bring to light of published, thank you for the good stories.

Mike
Alaska

Eric Flint, liked 1632
Hayden from where? Braintree Mass?

#32 ::: Ty Johnston ::: (view all by) ::: June 29, 2006, 04:24 PM:

Drat. Jim, you will be missed.

#33 ::: dan ::: (view all by) ::: June 29, 2006, 05:28 PM:

Man, there have been a lot of his books on my nightstand over the years... Go in peace, Mr. Baen.

#34 ::: Lori Coulson ::: (view all by) ::: June 29, 2006, 05:37 PM:

Did anyone else notice the "Thank You" note link near the bottom of the Baen homepage?

If you didn't, go take a look -- it made me smile.

#35 ::: Charlie Stross ::: (view all by) ::: June 29, 2006, 05:57 PM:

Damn. That's too early and ... well, damn.

My sympathies to his family and friends.

#36 ::: John F. Carr ::: (view all by) ::: June 29, 2006, 06:17 PM:

I worked with Jim for over 20 years on many projects and I'm going to miss him -- as will the field.

Jim's gift was he knew what he liked and that his readers would like it, too. Jim knew there was an audiece for military sf long before anyone else in the field. And, he wasn't afraid to put his publishing muscle where it would do the most good.

He published a few clinkers, but for the most part you knew if you bought a Baen book it was going to be a good read. At worst, an interesting one!

One of the luminaries of the SF sky has gone out this week and our world will be a little less bright. Jim Baen, RIP.

#37 ::: ppint. ::: (view all by) ::: June 29, 2006, 06:41 PM:

his editorial choices've - mostly - been entertaining me since he took over If from ejler jakobson - and then Galaxy; when he moved to Ace, that publisher's sf line rediscovered the sheer joy in reading sf, that it had lost (and even though Destinies' format was dreadful for the reproduction of artwork, and the visual presentation of the fiction poor, it allowed him to experiment, and publish improving writers).
by the time he moved to set up Tor's sf list, i was, for a second or third time, putting at least some of the lessons i'd learned from afar into practice, in my way - and they worked; and some years later, when i was once again in the world of bookselling, his very own Baen books accounted for a sizeable wodge of the imports best-loved by many of my customers: he knew his business, and his own mind, and he backed his judgement successfully.

i enjoyed his company, but i only saw him at the one Seacon; i had hoped i'd have the chance to talk sf, and the world, over with him again one day...

my sympathies to his family and to friends, who really knew jim baen, and must bear their orders of magnitude so much greater loss.

#38 ::: Patrick Nielsen Hayden ::: (view all by) ::: June 29, 2006, 07:25 PM:

"JBWoodford, I'm a little confused on *who* would have been overruling Jim on the HC sales estimate for 1945."

Presumably Simon and Schuster brass, since they were and are Baen's distribution.

I'm not so sure about some of the stuff in that John Ringo bit about 1945, but you know something, this is not the thread to have a big argument about 1945.

#39 ::: Teresa Nielsen Hayden ::: (view all by) ::: June 29, 2006, 07:35 PM:

Er, no wish to criticize Mr. Ringo, but if TDA had anything to do with 1945, it's news to me. Meanwhile, if you're looking for reasons the book fared badly with reviewers in general, have a look at the review of it posted by Red Mike.

#40 ::: Mitch Wagner ::: (view all by) ::: June 29, 2006, 08:38 PM:

My favorite alternate-WWII novel is "The Proteus Operation," by Hogan. Totally rocks.

I'm excluding "The Man in the High Castle" because I don't want to have to compare Dick vs. Hogan and possibly reveal myself to be a barbarian with no taste.

#41 ::: Susan ::: (view all by) ::: June 29, 2006, 08:54 PM:

My favorite alternate-WWII novel is "The Proteus Operation," by Hogan. Totally rocks.

It does rock, and is my favorite of that genre as well.

I have electronic copies of several Baen books given to me by various friends who have Baen e-book subscriptions. They are in a nice pile of printout on a shelf on top of the copies I later purchased, waiting for the time when I need to hook a friend and will pass them on. Jim Baen definitely Got It.

#42 ::: Lizzy L ::: (view all by) ::: June 29, 2006, 08:55 PM:

I'm sorry. We didn't get along personally and we had, in general (though not completely) very different tastes in books, but Jim Baen was creative at a time when many editors were delighted to limit their acquisitions to "Amityville Horror Six," and he challenged the field in some very important ways. And he made it possible for a lot of hard-working writers to feed their kids and pay their bills.

Go in peace.

#43 ::: Lee ::: (view all by) ::: June 29, 2006, 09:22 PM:

Fly with the sparks, Mr. Baen.

(Aside to Scraps: Now you've got me wanting to go find a copy of We Who Are About To... -- is this book by Joanna Russ, as your comment seems to imply?)

#44 ::: Nancy C. Hanger ::: (view all by) ::: June 29, 2006, 09:29 PM:

I worked for and with Jim for over 16 years, the last seven as his production manager for the entire book line. I'm sure I knew sides of Jim Baen few get to see, and didn't see sides others saw; he was indeed a complicated man. The man I started to work for in 1989 was not the man he was in the last few years, that's for sure: his health was not the best, and he knew damn well he wasn't taking care of himself, yet was too stubborn to do anything more about it; he despised doctors and hospitals. Yet a non-stubborn Jim Baen would not have been the brilliant publisher he was; stubbornness was a keystone to his character, both for good and ill. He stuck to his guns, fiercely protected and stood by those he considered his extended family and friends, and (at least, for most of the time I knew him) had a memory like the mythological elephant (for good or ill). He was a brilliant publisher who could see a niche or need from a mile off and knew how to fill that niche. I didn't always adore every title we published, but for the years I oversaw all production (and for the titles I handled before then), I tried to elevate the production quality of the line to its highest possibilities. I only hope I made a difference. Alas, I had to leave Baen last October; I still miss it.

If those who read this list know anyone who is going to the private farewell to Jim down in NC, please get in touch with me.

For reasons I cannot fathom, after re-emphasizing that I am "still part of the family," his editor has refused to take my phone calls in the last week and has only sent me very formal email, excluding me from the private good-byes. As of today, the office has apparently been ordered to refuse to speak to me regarding Jim and to tell me that there will be no farewell for him other than the fannish public party at some convention in July. I know his ashes are to be interred in the next week.

I do not know why after 16 years I am to be excluded from something so important and yet so innocent.

After almost half of my adult working life was spent working directly with Jim Baen, I only want to say good-bye and make my peace, nothing more. Do get in touch with me if you can be of help.

#45 ::: Scott Taylor ::: (view all by) ::: June 29, 2006, 09:57 PM:

Damnit.

Like Jo, some of my first exposure to Jim Baen was through the Destinies anthologies - and when the New Destinies series came out, I eagerly awaited each new copy at the Village Green.

But it is easy to say that hundreds of Baen titles have graced my bookshelves over the years, and I have never to my recollection had to resort to Dorothy Parker's solution with one. Not all were great pieces of literature - not even all were tremendously entertaining - but none were awful, and the vast majority were worth both my time and money. Dozens of his free e-books resided - reside! - on my Palm, for those times when words-on-a-screen were needed.

A smart and cunning editor and publisher, who was prescient enough to see where the market was moving, and moved his company in that direction. He found the niches where he could make a living - and then some, and made them his own.

Goodbye, Jim Baen. Your presence on Earth made the world a little better, and you will be missed.

#46 ::: Writerious ::: (view all by) ::: June 29, 2006, 10:00 PM:

So sorry to hear it. It's a loss to the speculative fiction world and the publishing world in general.

#47 ::: Steve Taylor ::: (view all by) ::: June 29, 2006, 10:09 PM:

That's a very fine obituary by David Drake. Do read it.

#48 ::: Marilee ::: (view all by) ::: June 29, 2006, 10:47 PM:

Ah, well. He wasn't in pain the last two weeks, and he seems to have had some idea that he was close to death. If you have to die, that's not a bad way.

#49 ::: Scraps ::: (view all by) ::: June 30, 2006, 12:05 AM:

Yes, Lee, We Who Are About To... is by Joanna Russ. I don't know whether it's in print. It was available for a while in mass market, though.

#50 ::: Seth Breidbart ::: (view all by) ::: June 30, 2006, 12:22 AM:

I miss him already.

I can't say any more.

#51 ::: Michael Walsh ::: (view all by) ::: June 30, 2006, 12:42 AM:

Wesleyan University Press has "We who are about to..." in print. With an introduction by Chip.

#52 ::: Lawrence Evans ::: (view all by) ::: June 30, 2006, 12:51 AM:

As I understand it, what screwed up the numbers on 1945 wasn't Simon & Schuster, it was the bookstores and chains grotesquely over-ordering. You can't very well refuse huge orders, even when you know what's going to happen; Baen had to increase the print-run to some absurd multiple of what had originally been planned to meet those orders.

So the books went out -- and came back unsold. The returns nearly bankrupted Baen Books.

#53 ::: Dave Bell ::: (view all by) ::: June 30, 2006, 06:35 AM:

When I read 1945 I decided it was a competently written book.

More than that, it is written to tell a story. It's maybe not the best way of putting it, but I think that's a characteristic of Baen Books. You want to find out what happens next.

There's books, well-written, much-lauded, which don't manage that, even though I might prefer the characters as people. There are books with more interesting ideas.

Jim Baen, as much as anything else, backed storytelling.

#54 ::: Xopher ::: (view all by) ::: June 30, 2006, 10:04 AM:

Lawrence Evans, why can't you refuse huge orders, when you know what's going to happen? Can't you do anything that's in the best interest of your company?

In fact, don't companies often deliberately limit the initial print run below what they think the demand will be, to create buzz about all the people waiting for copies? Is that always a screwup?

#55 ::: Patrick Nielsen Hayden ::: (view all by) ::: June 30, 2006, 10:09 AM:

I think we get a little carried away with all this rhetoric about "telling a story," as if a preference for entertaining storytelling were the passion of a tiny minority bravely holding out against the tyranny of the avant garde. Instead of, you know, the preference of 99% of the readers, writers, publishers, and booksellers in the SF world.

The other day, browsing Baen's Bar, I saw someone refer to "arty farty houses like Tor." Scouts' honor, I did. And in fact I understand Terry Goodkind's next book for us will be an hommage to Samuel Beckett, told in free verse. Back to work, comrades! We have story values to destroy!

#56 ::: Patrick Nielsen Hayden ::: (view all by) ::: June 30, 2006, 10:12 AM:

Oh and, yes, of course a publisher can cap orders.

#57 ::: Patrick Nielsen Hayden ::: (view all by) ::: June 30, 2006, 10:16 AM:

To expand on that: I recall talking to (then-) Barnes & Noble YA buyer Joe Monte around the time that Scholastic was publishing the third Harry Potter book, the first one to be a truly planet-busting bestseller. Joe was going batty because Scholastic was refusing to ship B&N as many copies as B&N thought it could sell. It happens.

#58 ::: Tina ::: (view all by) ::: June 30, 2006, 10:57 AM:

Sad news.

All I can really say here is that I'm glad to see people will remember him well for his work, regardless of how they felt about him or if they even knew him.

#59 ::: Xopher ::: (view all by) ::: June 30, 2006, 01:37 PM:

Patrick, I'm glad to learn that my plotless seventeen-volume sonnet cycle (working title: Profania Comedia) will find a welcoming home in the glistening marble hallways of Tor. I will be delivering it personally, in a Rider Truck smelling vaguely of ammonium nitrate, since I can't afford to ship it. If you reject it I will commit a very poetic suicide by leaping from atop the manuscript.

#60 ::: Lawrence Evans ::: (view all by) ::: June 30, 2006, 02:55 PM:

I should have said that you can't refuse huge orders without antagonizing people you don't want to antagonize, and perhaps killing sales. Saying, "No, we don't think you can really sell that many of our product," is just not good advertising, as it implies either that you think they're incompetent or you think your product sucks.

Or both.

#61 ::: Georgiana ::: (view all by) ::: June 30, 2006, 10:12 PM:

Oh no, this is very sad news. I'd read about his stroke but was hoping for the best outcome.

#62 ::: Daniel Boone ::: (view all by) ::: July 01, 2006, 05:38 PM:

Very sad indeed. As a reader with few fannish or industry connections (my reading here is generally as close as I've been since the SFRT days on GEnie) I can say that the Baen imprint is the only one that makes a difference to me when I'm waffling about an unknown book in the bookstore. If I know nothing about the book and the cover blurb has left me undecided, I'll buy a Baen book; in all other cases, it goes back on the shelf. He musta been doing something right.

#63 ::: Clark E Myers ::: (view all by) ::: July 02, 2006, 01:51 PM:

Hard not to like: Toni Weisskopf and Dave suggest that people who wish to make a memorial donation purchase copies of THE WORLD TURNED UPSIDE DOWN and donate them to libraries or teenagers of their acquaintance.

As you know Bob The World Turned Upside Down is a collection of stories from Baen's golden age of SF (read in his childhood) each story chosen for a startling breakthrough concept which left readers stunned and changed the course of science fiction

#64 ::: Terry Karney ::: (view all by) ::: July 03, 2006, 11:56 AM:

Sonovabitch.

I never met him, but I've read a number of the writers he published, and they probably shaped a fair bit of my outlook on a lot of things.

This wasn't a huge surprise, but it's not the news I wanted to be reading from Scotland.

#65 ::: Alex ::: (view all by) ::: July 05, 2006, 03:12 AM:

John Ringo posted a lovely eulogy/letter to Jim Baen here.

Alex

#66 ::: jonquil ::: (view all by) ::: July 05, 2006, 06:55 PM:

It all depends on your definition of "lovely", I guess. From said eulogy/letter:

"It was probably a girl in the publishing industry. That meant liberal. So I punched up the whole wouldn't it be nice if all the strip-malls went away? This is what will happen in my book! You should publish it because it's, like, green and stuff! Because, like, all the strip malls go away."

#67 ::: J Austin ::: (view all by) ::: July 06, 2006, 01:09 AM:

Well, I thought it was lovely, and not the sort of subject matter I have any right to be offended by. Considering that he spends a good deal of it talking about how painfully green and clueless he was until Mr. Baen took the time for him, I don't see anything unlovely about his recollections of his younger self. But then, I sort of thought that part was funny.

#68 ::: Jessica Pulley ::: (view all by) ::: July 09, 2006, 08:16 AM:

I'm still in shock over the loss of Jim. I had the priviledge of knowing and working for him for a short while. However, I made my mistakes and Jim and I butted heads quite a bit. Jim always forgave me somehow yet I always held onto the anger. I remember forcing his stubborned self to go to the hospital one night when his bloodsugar was so extremely high I was afraid he was going to go into a diabetic coma. He argued with me the whole way to the hospital in typical Baen fashion saying that my driving was far worse than anything any doctor could or would do to him. Well Jim, I'm sorry to hear of your passing and even more sorry that I never had the chance to say goodbye. You were and still are a very special person who has left his mark on this world. Thank you for being my friend.

#69 ::: Aaron ::: (view all by) ::: July 16, 2006, 09:10 PM:

Websnark has a few words to say here:
http://www.websnark.com/archives/2006/07/in_memoriam_jim.html

#70 ::: Steve Taylor ::: (view all by) ::: June 05, 2008, 09:24 AM:

Scraps @ #124 writes:

[_We Who Are About To_, Joanna Russ]
>received a juvenile, fatheaded dismissive review from Spider Robinson

Which makes me recall the day I stopped being able to tolerate Spider Robinson - it was his review of Haldeman's rather good _All My Sins Remembered_, and it was indeed juvenile and fatheaded, though not entirely dismissive.

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