It is with the heaviest of hearts that I sit here today. For those of you who are unaware, today we lost a great man. Rocky Wood, President of The Horror Writers Association, lost his hard fought battle against ALS. Many of you will know him from his career and his close ties to Stephen King. Some of you will know him as a champion of the horror genre and a dedicated man who gave his all to helping to elevate the genre and its acceptance in the literary community, all while battling a crippling and devastating disease. Some of you are fortunate enough, as am I, to remember him as a supportive friend, honorable human being, and a blessing to be around. For the last three years I have forged a bond with Rocky as he helped me navigate the ins and outs of the Bram Stoker Awards® and the many rules I needed to be familiar with. He was always kind, always patient, and always a friend. It is soul crushing to look back through our years of correspondence and realize that there will be no more. I am deeply saddened by this, as I know many others are and it’s hard to find comforting words at a time such as this. Instead, I can only offer his family, friends and associates a prayer for peace in the knowledge that his earthly suffering has reached its end. The people in our lives are not gifts. They are loans. And we are blessed for the time we have them, and further blessed when they are gone by the lessons and love that is their legacy. Godspeed Rocky. We will miss you forever and always.~C.W.
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