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R.I.P. Robert Jordan

Spain
The world of high fantasy is poorer today.

James Rigney, better known to fantasy readers as Robert Jordan, has passed away. Although he had been fighting amyloidosis for several years, the news of his death still came as a shock to many, including me. He was so optimistic and determined that you had to think that if anyone could beat the disease, it would be him.

Jim was a good and gracious man, a pleasure to share a platform or a pint with, and his contributions to modern fantasy were many. His huge, ambitious WHEEL OF TIME series helped to redefine the genre, and opened many doors for the writers who followed.

He was also unfailingly generous towards other fantasists, always ready to offer them support and encouragement. My own ICE & FIRE series might never have found its audience without the cover quote that Jim was so kind as to provide, back when A GAME OF THRONES was first published. I will always be grateful to him for that.

The last time I saw Jim was at an Archon in Collinsville, Illinois. It was before his final illness. He was the convention Guest of Honor and I was the Toastmaster, and I introduced him by telling the audience that actually we were the same person. It was a gag that Jim himself had suggested in the Green Room beforehand. While I was doing the intro, and claiming credit for all his books, he slowly entered, walked up silently behind me, and stood looming over me, glowering like Zeus. We got a great laugh.

I had some great dinners with Jim and his wife Harriet there in Collinsville as well. We talked about other writers, editors, publishers, all the stuff that writers always talk about... oh, and a little about our own series as well... and Jim and Harriet invited me to visit them if I ever made it down to Charleston. Sad to say, I never did.

RIP, Jim. You will be much missed.

Comments

( 162 comments )
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carnage4u
Sep. 17th, 2007 09:57 pm (UTC)
Thats really sucks he died, I have many friends that read his works, and liked it. I was always going to hold off and wait till he was done, before I started. I read too many book series that are in progress, and just dont want to add any to that list.

Its a sad thing.
gbdragon420
Sep. 17th, 2007 10:12 pm (UTC)
May Aiel, Warders and Aes Sedai weep openly, without shame...
When I first stumbled across The Dragonlance Chronicles and began asking the older and wiser(my sister's stoner friends) about good fantasy the three answers I got were; Tolkein, Peirs Anthony and Robert Jordan. This was say twelve years or more ago and I have read at least a little of each author. Tolkein speaks for itself and I found Peirs Anthony to be very dissapointing but for some reason I never read any Jordan until two months ago when I bought ten of the books at my local flea market/pawn shop. I'm on Fires of Heaven and I'm not a fast reader nor do I have much time for reading. At first the series was only a good way to pass the time until "Dance" but I have known since the third book that I would finish this series before I read another book. I love the peoples and orders of his world and the doomed aspect of his characters. Lordan was a masterful author. I appreciate your respect of him and thank you for sharing your memories with us. Though i knew nothing of Jim Rigney I wish his family peace and rest after this. And you as well George______Garrison

R.I.P. Robert Jordan
ladyeleonora
Sep. 17th, 2007 10:13 pm (UTC)
I am so sad. Like many who posted here, it was Jordan that got me started on fantasy a few years back. I love reading and used to boast I read everything except sci-fi and fantasy. Then somebody told me to try Robert Jordan and I got hooked. From there on I went to read Game of Thrones, part because of his quote on the cover, and part because a lot of people mentioned you and him in the same line of the great fantasy writers. Without RJ I might never have discovered GRRM or the fantasy genre as a whole.

Since then I've read Wheel of Time many times, and most likely will many more. Robert Jordan was a talented man, and I am forever grateful for his sharing his worlds with people like me.
punka_pie
Sep. 17th, 2007 10:14 pm (UTC)
Robert Jordan
He will be greatly missed!
My heart goes out to his courageous wife Harriet!
imberline
Sep. 17th, 2007 11:02 pm (UTC)
We still have not found the Song....
RJ and I had exchanged pleasantries once or twice, and I had always thought that, now that I live here in Augusta, that once he was feeling better, we might sit down for coffee or something in Charleston.

I was stunned when I learned the news. He was an inspiration to many of us, as you said, George, and he will be missed.

It pleases me that you and he were friends, and made the good memories you spoke of when you last parted. My condolences to his loved ones, and you, George.

Josh Gharst
monocleostrich
Sep. 17th, 2007 11:33 pm (UTC)
I was also shocked to hear of Mr. Rigney's passing. I feel terribly for his family and all of his friends, including you, Mr. Martin. The genre has definitely lost a very special and important voice. I think I'm going to drag out my WoT audiobooks and go through the entire series again for the next couple of months' worth of driving in memory of Robert Jordan.
redzie
Sep. 17th, 2007 11:56 pm (UTC)
The Wheel of Time Turns
I have been a loyal fan of Mr. Rigny, aka Robert Jordan, since his first book in the series came out. I then became a fan of GRRM after seeing the cover quote on the first book of the Ice and Fire book. I grabbed that book and hugged it tightly. If Mr. Jordan recommended this book, well hey! Its gotta be good.

Mr. Jordan had an enormous talent and will be sorely missed by his legion of fans. God bless him and his family in this time of sorrow. He will be greatly missed.
briannablade
Sep. 18th, 2007 12:05 am (UTC)
I am shocked as well to hear of Robert Jordan's passing. I'm glad to know that you two were friends though. You're my two favorite authors.

I'm sorry for your loss though. My thoughts are prayers are with you as well as RJ's family.

The genre has definitely lost someone great and he will be sorely missed.
eviserys
Sep. 18th, 2007 12:06 am (UTC)
A true legend.
"The Wheel of Time turns, and Ages come and pass, leaving memories that become legend."

Robert Jordan was a legend that we should never forget.
klitke
Sep. 18th, 2007 01:34 am (UTC)
The Wheel of Time has been one of my favorite book series since I was a little kid, and perhaps second only to A Song of Ice and Fire in recent years. Thanks for the memories, RJ.
_aqualung_
Sep. 18th, 2007 02:27 am (UTC)
That so sad
It was his cover quote that got me to pick up your book.
cleekmomma
Sep. 18th, 2007 03:54 am (UTC)
Such a shock , a great man/author gone. I can't seem to form any words but I was thankful to come here and see such kind words you have spoken about him. I loved his books as much as I love yours and it's so very sad. I truly thought he'd beat it.

thank you for your words to your fans, Rj is smiling down from above on us all
murry_duck
Sep. 18th, 2007 04:02 am (UTC)
*sigh*
RJ fought hard, I will think of him everytime I hear my sister call me Mary Sedai(which she does frequently but ya'll don't need to know why)May he shelter in the Creators Palm and the last embrace of the mother welcome him home. Godspeed Mr Rigney..

GRRM you better be paying attention to your health. RJ didn't lead me to you, I found you on my own, but you are much too talented to lose too.
barak181
Sep. 18th, 2007 04:41 am (UTC)
It is a sad, sad day.
fireballofdoom
Sep. 18th, 2007 09:17 am (UTC)
R.I.P Robert Jordan
karehiro
Sep. 18th, 2007 12:43 pm (UTC)
Wheel of Time has been part of my life for over 10 years. It was the first epic fantasy I've ever gotten into, and it played an incredible role in my enjoyment of reading over the course of my life. I still can't believe this has happened. All I can do is to give my best wishes to Harriet and his family. I know they have a tough road ahead of them, and I give my support.

Rest In Peace R.J. You'll truly be missed.
mahlou
Sep. 18th, 2007 03:13 pm (UTC)
the one who made me love to read
I never would have found a love for reading had it not been fo RJ's wheel of time series. He has given me one of the greatest joys of my life. I will miss his writting indeed. May he rest in peace.
marina_bonomi
Sep. 18th, 2007 03:42 pm (UTC)
I'm in shock since I read the news. I had been following the blog on Dragonmount since I heard of his illness, but never really dared to post comments there (a mistake I deeply regret).
He made me laugh, cry and think, he will be sorely missed. My heart goes out to his family and friends.

May you rest in God's peace mr. Rigney.
lanfear6
Sep. 18th, 2007 04:57 pm (UTC)
Robert Jordan opened my eyes to the world of fantasy, and if not for him I probably would never have heard of GRRM or read his awesome books. I've been reading WOT for 6 years (in between aSoIaF of course) and I hope the series ends the way RJ envisioned it for so many years.
RIP RJ and thank you for your amazing gift.
may_lisbeth
Sep. 18th, 2007 05:39 pm (UTC)
Worried!
I like GRRM -
Well I'm not sure I like HIM but I like his books.

Thinking about it I do not think I like him at all.

How can he have the nerve to fly around and watch football before he is finished til A Song Of Ice & Fire? Rude man indeed!! As you may have guessed I'm desperatly waiting for a Danse with Dragons!

I just hope you will finish your books before you get too old or sick... I'm having nightmares about it...

Ahh.. maaaaby a bit cranky today, but I just found out RJ died, and when I read the news, first I was afraid it was george! Don't get me wrong, I love Wheel of time, but not as much as a song of ice and fire... so behind all the bullocs there is actually a complement...

Live long and prosper (and write a bit faster)

May-lisbeth
killamonkey
Sep. 19th, 2007 07:26 am (UTC)
Re: Worried!
show some respect. shut up.
pender_islander
Sep. 18th, 2007 08:37 pm (UTC)
Add me to the list of people who gave A Game of Thrones a chance mostly due to RJ's blurb... at that time the Wheel of Time held me in its spell. As I grew older and my tastes changed it impact on me may have lessened, but it still stands as a masterful achievement in the high fantasy genre. The fact that Robert Jordan won't be given a chance to finish his life's work makes me profoundly sad.
unrulywolf
Sep. 18th, 2007 11:02 pm (UTC)
I am very sad and offer my condolences. I have seen him on the shelves since back when I was a young girl and first started reading fantasy fiction. His death is a terrible loss for one of the most inspirational writers in modern fantasy fiction.
nycfalcon
Sep. 18th, 2007 11:04 pm (UTC)
Grateful to him and his work.
I was fortunate to meet Robert Jordan at a The Shadow Rising signing many years ago. At that time I commented in a Robert Jordan forum/newsgroup that he appeared ill and tired and that we shouldn't worry about whether or not the series came to a conclusion but enjoy it for what it was/is. This unfortunately started a small storm in the forums which was not my intent. That encounter along with the later news of his truly grave illness prepared me for the inevitable and yet always untimely end.

I've not continued to read the series since the ninth installment, because for me it had lost it's appeal and seemed extremely redundant (tugs braid). However, I still remember the thrill and wonderful enjoyment I felt reading the first book through the seventh. I also enjoyed his Conan work. I think I will revisit the Wheel of Time with fresh eyes and appreciation.

To his family and true friends,

Thank you for sharing him as much as you have.

Elias.
dragonguy
Sep. 18th, 2007 11:28 pm (UTC)
This deeply saddens me. Robert Jordan's The Wheel of Time Series is what opened me into the grand world of fantasy and literature.
macmac13
Sep. 19th, 2007 01:49 am (UTC)
The wheel weaves as the wheel wills
Peace favor you Jim.
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