He was the first great writer who ever encouraged me to believe in myself. Met him several times--he guested on my radio show, and at a symposium I taught at U.C.L.A. Was never anything but a gentleman and an inspiration. The last time I saw him I was asked to give a tribute for (I think) his 85th birthday at Universal Sheraton. I spoke of his kindness in reading two of my stories and responding with encouragement, of sitting at dinner with him and Larry Niven, of him believing that I had my best writing days ahead of me. I cried. He was in his wheelchair, suffering from stroke, and we hugged. He wrote me one last time, thanking me for my tribute, saying: "some of your tears are my own."
What a wonderful spirit. I loved him.
Thursday, June 07, 2012
Posted by Steven Barnes at 7:02 AM