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So . . . jaylake died yesterday. A lot of pixels have been spilled in memoriam. I posted some words at Facebook, loving words in praise of my friend, my occasional lover--that was year and years ago now, and I know I'm not alone in this particular distinction by any means--a brilliant man. (Find those words below, written within hours of his death.) He was also an infuriating man: kind, vain, hilarious, oblivious, egotistical, generous, angry, affectionate, childish, maddening. A frustrating, entertaining, crazy-making, inventive man. An imperfect person by anyone's definition--and by his own admission, to his credit. (Thus speaketh the most imperfect of people, I must note, in justice.)

I have been in pieces over the last day. Fine until I had to talk about his passing, and then a mess, and then fine again.

My feelings about his departure are complex. I'm grateful that he was with his closest loved ones in death. I'm relieved on his behalf that cancer, this miserable disease, no longer tortures him with its slow stripping of his mind and his capabilities. I weep in losing him. How can I not, when we have the kind of history we had with each other?

He was my beloved friend. For every good and blessed thing we shared, for differences in perspective, for being close and being distant and being close again, we were first and foremost friends.

I mourn my friend, and I will miss him.

Here's what I posted to Facebook, describing Jay to a friend who never knew him, who barely had ever even heard of him:

Jay was a remarkable person. The two of you came from such different parts of my life: let me tell you about him. Not only was he an award-winning science fiction and fantasy writer (Google him, really), he blogged about his journey through colon cancer with a frankness that was bracing and breathtaking. He gained a huge following for his blogging--almost as large if not larger--than for his beautifully wrought fiction. He was ferociously, blasphemously funny, a fierce and generous friend, an intensely thoughtful man. He loved women. [ETA: As many as he could, as often as possible.] He was unabashedly political and unapologetically outspoken about the things he believed in. In science fiction circles, he was known for being not just a gifted writer but a terrific editor and a mentor for writers coming up. He supported all of his friends in the endeavors of their hearts, whether it was writing or illustration or any other art form. He loved living and lived loud and with enormous brio. Our friendship was long and loving and complex--but never, ever boring. I knew I could count on Jay if I needed him. It is not too dramatic to say that a light has gone out of this world. He shined so bright that I--that we all--had to wear shades.

Please keep Jay's partner, Lisa, Jay's daughter, the_child, and his family in your thoughts. And if you're so inclined, please donate in his honor to The Jo Clayton Memorial Fund. It helped Jay when he needed it; he wanted it to help others in their times of need as well.


( 6 notes — Leave a note )
Jun. 3rd, 2014 06:41 am (UTC)
I have donated to the Clayton Fund in his honor; it seems the best thing I can do in that regard, since I can't claim to have known him though so many of my friends did.

My thoughts go out to all those who are missing him now, in all their individual ways, though most of all for those closest to him.
Jun. 3rd, 2014 11:54 am (UTC)
I appreciate that. Thank you.
Jun. 3rd, 2014 01:42 pm (UTC)
Jun. 3rd, 2014 03:43 pm (UTC)
Loves to you all - if you need anything give us a call.
Jun. 3rd, 2014 04:16 pm (UTC)
Jun. 3rd, 2014 09:28 pm (UTC)
( 6 notes — Leave a note )


Good girls go to heaven.
Bad girls go everywhere.
--Mae West


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