David Eddings died yesterday.
Mr. Eddings, for those that don't know, is a New York Times Bestselling Fantasy Author. He also resides in the Pantheon of Writers that fill my head.
I loved, loved David Eddings and by all rights Leigh Eddings.
David and Leigh Eddings, Leigh being his uncredited wife/co-author until recent history, are responsible for some of the bestselling fantastical works not called Lord of the Rings or Harry Potter.
The Belgariad and The Mallorean, The Elenium and The Tamuli are each seminal works. Mr. Eddings was the only writer that seemed to understand that fantasy fiction doesn't have to be long winded diatribes better suited for a D&D session.
His characters were funny, collquial, fierce, human. The Eddings' answer to Gandalf's archaic ramblings was a drunken 7,000 year old fool named Belgarath.
More than anything, as a child, I was struck with how strong and powerful his heroine's are. Fantasy seems to steamroll over the fairer sex, always another damsel in distress. Polgara and Serephina were islands of strong calm in the chaos around them.
From the ages of around 12 to 23, I read everything the Eddings' wrote once a year. Everytime I did I was connected to that insecure boy that huddled in his room listening to Nirvana and Tool. I miss that wide eyed bastard sometimes.
After I graduated college with a degree in Creative Writing and Lit Theory, my critical eye was more harsh to the works and I derided the books I loved so dearly at one time. So I haven't paid attention to the Eddings' recent works. I was sad to see that David's writing partner, Leigh passed early 2007 and more alarmed at the weight of age seemed to be having on David when he burned his house down working on a car.
Some kids have baseball or fishing at the lake with their dad to anchor them to a specific time or emotion.
My happy place was with Ender Wiggin, Pug, and Belgarion.
In the words of my favorite now deceased author, Kurt Vonnegut, "So it goes..."