Jacqueline Carey Jacqueline Carey - Official Author Site Jacqueline Carey - Official Author Site


March 2015

Laura and Jacqueline I've been thinking a lot about friendship lately.

Last October, I lost one of my best friends to ovarian cancer, and I haven't been ready to write about this until now. I have several friends who've survived cancer, and I never imagined Laura wouldn't be one of them. Laura was determined and optimistic like no one else I've known, and she loved life to its fullest. She had absolutely no intention of leaving it; but she did, very much against her will, very much to the profound sorrow of those who loved her.

I bet Laura's pretty goddamn pissed about that. I am. I think about her every day. I miss her.

How do you define a "best friend?" My friend Jack talks about "3 am people," the ones you can count on to take that emergency call at three o'clock in the morning and be there for you no matter, no matter how long it's been since you've seen each other. Well, yeah. Definitely.

But a best friend... there's something about that bond that's harder to define. Maybe best friend is a bad term, one that evokes the hierarchies of high school friendship. Closest friend? Dearest friend? Maybe it's wrong to attach any kind of superlative to a friendship. I treasure all my friends, and I never want to imply I value one more than another. Different friends play different roles in our lives at different times.

And yet, and yet… Laura was one of my best friends.

Our friendship evolved over the course of twenty-plus years. Laura knew me as a struggling writer working a full-time day job; I knew her first as a college student finishing her degree, then as a young artist struggling to get by in New York. We knew each other's highs and lows. When I finally had a breakthrough in my career, she celebrated my success. When Laura launched her own highly successful business as a photo researcher in the publishing industry, I was proud of her and amazed at her accomplishment.

(Oh, and you've probably seen her work on a bookstore shelf somewhere. Her last major project was Hillary Clinton's recent memoir.)

Anyway, there's more to it.

There's a click, a special connection, a like-mindedness. Politics, arts, entertainment, popular culture, humor, personal circumstances, regional history... it doesn't really matter what, I suppose. Only that you share a foundation on which to build a friendship, and you do. You share your hopes and dreams and fears, your successes and your failures, and inside jokes that pile atop one another until they comprise a private language of catch-phrases, gestures and glances. This can be perplexing or downright annoying to people who are not you, but you don't care.

But it can be charming, too. It warms my heart when I see a group of friends having fun, being silly and uninhibited, delighting in each other's company. Especially old friends. It takes work to sustain those kinds of friendship as you get older. Life pulls you in different directions. Time and distance take a toll; sometimes you simply drift apart. Laura never let that happen. I'd like to take some credit for it, but I honestly think the lion's share belongs to her. I'm a good and loyal friend, but I'm not as proactive as I'd like to be.

We talked about taking a trip overseas together for ages. A couple of years ago, we finally did it - Julie and I and Laura and her husband Glyn went to Spain together. We had so much fun; we came back with wonderful memories, a brand new stock of private catch-phrases, and plans to travel together again soon.

I'm so glad we finally did take a trip together. I'm so mad and sad that we'll never do it again.

This month, Julie and I are going to New York for a celebration of Laura's life. It will be good to laugh and cry and exchange memories with people who knew and loved her. But when we come home, there will still be a void in our lives. It is a void nothing will ever fill, for no one can take her place.

Laura, who loved yoga and tango and photography, silly nicknames, British comedies and Dancing with the Stars, Spanish tapas and single malt scotches; Laura, who loved beaches and sunbathing, spas and pedicures and massages; Laura, who was the youngest person I knew to love opera and saw Wagner's entire Ring Cycle at the Met more than once; Laura, who learned to love European football for her expatriate Liverpudlian husband's sake, is no more.

So I've been thinking a lot about friendship lately.

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Poison Fuit
Agent of Hel: Poison Fruit, US hardcover release, October 2014

Dark Currents by Jacquline Carey
Agent of Hel: Autumn Bones, US paperback release, October 2014

In-CON-ceivable, Guest of Honor
Northamptom, MA
August 28-30, 2015

SF:SE, Guest
Orlando, FL
September 25-27, 2015

Archon, Guest of Honor
Collinsville, IL
(outside St. Louis, MO)
October 2-4, 2015

Nerdcon: Stories, Guest
Minneapolis, MN
October 9-10, 2015




Read the first chapter of Poison Fruit

Read the first chapter of Autumn Bones

Read the first chapter of Dark Currents

Read the first chapter of Saints Astray

Read the first chapter of Naamah's Blessing

Read the first chapter of Naamah's Curse

Read the first chapter of Naamah's Kiss

Read the first chapter of Santa Olivia

Read the first chapter of Kushiel's Mercy

Read the second chapter of Kushiel's Justice

Read the first chapter of Kushiel's Justice

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