On Saturday night, Dark-Hunter posse member Maggie Mae Short was watching fireworks. She posted about it on Facebook. Apparently, her town had a bunch left over from the 4th of July, so they were setting them off in honor of some local event. She looked out her window, was surprised by a professional light show in rainbow colors, and shared that magical moment with us.
This morning I woke to find friends posting that Maggie Mae was gone.
I hope to be able to say a little something about this before the Hour With Sherrilyn Kenyon at Dragon*Con next Friday, but we don’t always have that lovely block of time beforehand in which I can put on an impromptu Princess Alethea Preshow, so I wanted to make sure I said this here.
It is still strange to me when one of my friends passes away, but it is no longer strange for me to mourn someone I barely (or never) knew in person, but with whom I conversed online almost daily.
Being a writer is odd, in that you constantly wobble back and forth over the line from infamy to obscurity (until you’re someone like Sherri or J.K. Rowling). I decided back when my friend Andre Norton passed away that I would always strive to make as many friends as possible, even if that meant crying like my heart was broken every time one left. It was worth it. It’s always worth it. That was the origin of that thing I always say: Strangers are just best friends I haven’t met yet.
Nobody says that authors and fans can’t be friends. I’m a person. You’re a person. We met because we like the same things. Seriously–I still go to Sherrilyn Kenyon book signings because they are like three-hour cocktail parties during which I meet the most fun people. I keep in touch with those people. They make me laugh with the things they say, and they stop by to leave a hug when I’m feeling down. When I feel passionate about something, they’re part of the conversation. We hang out together at conventions. Sometimes we even play Words With Friends at 2am.
Some of the Dark-Hunter fans are closer to me than members of my own family. They cheer me on and inspire me from every corner of this globe. Some are new (Britany) and some are old (Lisa). Some I met simply because they recognized me and screamed “Oh my god, I love you!” in a crowded food court full of people (Sammi). Some I met because they simply showed up, with their red hair and lovely accents (Bernadette). Some I got to know because we just kept meeting at Dark-Hunter signings from the beginning of time (Marie, Kat, Dee, Afifa, Penny, Judy, Eddie…the list goes on). We make the effort to stay in touch.
Sometimes, that’s all friendship is.
I can’t tell you how many people in my life have said to me, “Remember me when you’re famous!” and then never spoken to me again. I do remember those people. I have nightmares about them. We were closer than sisters and we don’t talk anymore. I send emails and texts and get nothing in return. It’s incredibly sad. People will come into your life and leave it because they choose to. There’s nothing you can do about that.
But it makes us treasure the people who DO make the effort even more.
Maggie Mae was always part of my global conversation. She was pleasant and shiny (and a breath of fresh air when some people who post comments have no social skills). I am sad that she will never know what seeing her there all the time meant to me.
I know I’m not great about being on the internet. I try to comment when I can–it’s like the luck of the draw if something comes across my news feed in the ten minutes I sign online to see if there are any old-world synonyms for the word “gnome.” But I would like everyone who posts on my FB wall, and on my blog, and who messages me on Twitter to know that I see you there. I’m listening. I’m smiling, or laughing, or following a link you just sent me. I appreciate the hell out of you, you mean the world to me, and–above all–I consider you a friend.
It really is just that easy.
I will miss you, Maggie Mae, and I will think of your smiling face the next time my night sky lights up with pretty colors. Thank you for being my friend. xox
15 thoughts on “Missing Maggie Mae”
Much love to you my friend. Losing a friend is never easy, I hope your warm and loving memories will get you through this most difficult time.
This is beautiful, Alethea.. You put into words what so many of us are feeling… Know that you are loved, and are a friend.. I remember the silliness when Berlyn was born about you sharing your princess title.. Now I realize that there iare thousands of you out there 🙂 you make me laugh with your blogs and tweets, and make me smile with the beautiful pictures. You shared your love of Adam Ezra with me, which I, for that, am eternally grateful. You are truly an inspiration sweetie.. Never forget that 🙂 thank you for this beautiful tribute 🙂 When our balloons soar to the heavens on Saturday, thoughts of all of my Menyons will be soaring with them.. Happy, cherished, fulfilled thoughts of the people that I have been blessed to know.. Monica xxxxx
Oh, Monica, THAT was lovely. Thank you!! xox
This is beautiful. I’m so sorry for your loss, and for the Dark Hunter community’s. I’ve seen a few posts about her — she was very special.
Thank you, sweetie. xox
I could not have said it any better. We are in each others lives because of a common like. For me with Maggie, and with you, I met because of Sherrilyn. I am so thankful to her for the wonderful friends she has brought into my life. We don’t always comment on every post or say hi each day but we know the others are there. Thank you for the beautiful words about our beautiful friend! Thank you, Alethea, for being you! Peace be with her family and her friends. Hugs!
*hugsback* Love you, Kim!
Well said Alethea,I know Maggie would be smiling and blushing right about now. She touched us all in many ways. She has her wings now that she always wanted. May the Great Spirit bless her and her family as we all say good bye for now to a dear friend,We shall meet again!
Alethea, thank you. This was beautiful, perfectly said and made me cry again but in a good way.
Thank you for sharing that. <3
Alethea, Sweetie that was beautiful and amazing and I can’t think of anyway to word it better. Thanks for saying what we all feel. I thank Sherri and the DHs for bringing people like you, Maggie Mae, Kim, Pam, Penny, Afifia, Marie, Kat, Liria, Amy, Steven, Monica, Judy, Jacsy, Suzi, Missy, Beth, KimmySimi, Eddie and so many other amazing people in my life that I can call family. So many of my everyday associates say that you guys can’t be my friends because we only talk online or met a couple times and I let them know that you guys that I rarely see and talk to are better friends and family than these fake people that I see everyday. So thank you for being the type of family that I can rarely see but always count on… Love you all
Dearest Princess Alethea,
Reading this post this morning nearly brought me to tears! That is such a sad story. Any time I have to list the days of the week so my brothers can remember what order they go in I think of you and your story Enchanted. Now every time I see fireworks I will think of this Maggie Mae. I never met her in person, or saw her online, but she sounds like a truly wonderful friend. When a somebody you love so much passes away, it makes you feel so terrible. I think just from hearing this I could easily spend the day in despair if it wasn’t for the hope I have. You see I firmly believe that some day we will see those ones again. Like it says in Revelation 21:4 ‘He (God) will wipe out every tear from their eyes, and death will be no more, neither will mourning nor outcry nor pain be any more. The former things have passed away.’ Even if you don’t believe in what the Bible promises, it’s a wonderful thing to think about isn’t it?
Thank you Lee, you truly are a princess! I’m going to repeat what CiCi said. You made me cry again but for a different reason. I really am going to miss Maggie! She got me to read ALL the Sookie Stackhouse books, and when I sent her photos of pink tank tops she knew immediately which book it was from and that they were meant for Erik! I like to think that she’s in heaven with her own hot Viking right now enjoying the afterlife with no worries or issues! I thank Sherri every day for bringing me a variety of special women that I’m lucky and proud to call friend and sister.
Thank you, Alethea. This is the first time I’ve seen this. It’s wonderful! Still miss her everyday!