Robert Hood – “Rev. Bob” – Has Died

Editor, writer, webmaster and File 770 commenter Rev. Bob died April 7 at the age of 50. His mother made the announcement on Facebook:  

Many of you know him as Bob or Rev. Bob. He died peacefully at home last night.

The paramedics took him to the hospital in hopes of resuscitating him, but they couldn’t.

It was NOT covid-19.

When Rev. Bob began participating here in 2015 he was working as an ebook creator and as a proofreader/copyeditor doing business as Tittle & Jot.    

For the previous 20 years he had been an active fan of Steve Jackson Games, and by then was maintaining the company’s website.

He was a Tennessee fan and on the conrunning side, for a time, he ran LibertyCon’s board/card gaming. The Chattanooga con is noted as a magnet for Baen authors, and when he finally dropped out around 2015 he said, “I parted ways with the con when they got too overtly conservative for me to feel comfortable attending – not in the ‘I don’t want my money going there’ sense, but in the ‘if they knew how liberal my politics are, I believe I would be very unwelcome’ sense.”

Rev. Bob described himself as a voracious reader who owned thousands of books – many of them print books he had scanned and converted to ebooks, as he once explained:

Goodreads puts me at 4255, and that’s only (a) physical books I’ve scanned since August 2011 and (b) all books purchased since the same date that I’m willing to admit to owning. There are a few other exceptions, like books in storage by a handful of key authors (pre-2011, manually added rather than scanned) or pre-2011 ebooks that I’ve added as I find them (e.g. contents of Baen CDs), but I know I’ve got boxes of currently-inaccessible books that Goodreads doesn’t know about. I’ve even got a bundle of Angry Robot ebooks that I got in their “100 for £100” deal and haven’t completely processed yet. Yes, I’m way behind.

Heck, I’ve got over 1600 DVDs and Blu-rays…

Having once been a prolific writer, he was able to share “Rev. Bob’s Rules for Writers”:

1. Get the words out of your head and into the manuscript.
2. Never submit/publish an untouched first draft. At the very least, read it over one time and be sure there’s nothing you want to change.
3. Pay attention to spelling, grammar, and punctuation. If you’re going to break those rules, do it on purpose.

That’s about it, really.

However, as he discussed from time to time, “Depression and despair have positively slaughtered my creative output since 2016. The chronic pain doesn’t exactly help, either. It used to be nothing for me to bash away at a keyboard for several hours, writing thousands of words at a time. Now I struggle to get from one scene to the next before I have to stop.” 

Yet he was still one of the most incisive and analytical debaters here. And whenever fannish wordplay broke out he contributed to the fun. (Three of his parody filksongs follow the jump.) He will be sorely missed.

[Thanks to Laura Haywood-Cory for the story.]

Filers Destroy Lyrics (2016)

Rev. Bob 

This is the theme to Pixel Scrolls
The off-meter theme to Pixel Scrolls
Filers looked me up and asked if I would filk a theme song

It’s almost halfway finished
No, I didn’t say it was Finnish
How do you like this ode to Pixel Scrolls?

This is the theme to Pixel Scrolls
The crudely-filked theme to Pixel Scrolls
This is the tune that’s guaranteed to shoo off all the Barflies
We’re almost to the part
Where I run out of lyrics
Now let’s read the latest Pixel Scroll!

Filers Destroy Even More Lyrics (2017)

Rev. Bob 

The Mount Tsundoku pile is hangin’ over my head
And if it falls over I reckon it’ll render me dead
Oh! Woe is me! Typos are a misery!
But I-I-I’ve got to read
So I’m off to start ‘nother pretty thick doorstop!

— On another day, in 2018, Rev. Bob broke out this filk to wild applause:

The File 770 Rag

It’s file o’clock on a Caturday
My mailbox just sounded a chime
Mike’s news for fans is awaiting me
Today’s Pixel Scroll’s here right on time!

There’s a dozen or two short news items there
Plus a couple of odd videos
A comic or two and a birthday or three
And maybe some blog links – who knows?

Pixels keep scrollin’ on
And comments keep rollin’ along…

Scroll us some pixels, Seven-Seventy
Serve up the news tonight
You’re the place that we go to be “in the know”
And the comments will roll in all night

Now Meredith’s cruising an ebook site
To tell us which books are priced right
But it seems that her dragon
Is blockin’ my wagon
So I’ll probably be here all night

I see movement – there, in a dark corner
They’re probably the shy lurker type
Far away, I may hear puppies baying now
But I’m not buying into their hype.

Oh, pixels keep scrollin’ on
And comments keep rollin’ along…

Well, Kendall scored fifth ‘fore I hit the end
With Hampus in second-fifth place
Sometime Soon Lee will appear
Followed by Paul Weimer
As Stoic and Chip up the pace.

Damn, I can’t read this verse for the life o’ me
But not ’cause I’m blind, drunk or mean
No, JJ said it was too spoilery
And encoded it in ROT13.

Fpebyy hf fbzr cvkryf, Frira-Friragl
Freir hc gur arjf gbavtug
Lbh’er gur cynpr gung jr tb gb or “va gur xabj”
Naq gur pbzzragf jvyy ebyy va nyy avtug

The discussion’s still rolling on Caturday
Camestros and Tim just arrived
Lis, Jon, Andrew, Ctein,
James, Bruce, others most fine,
Ding! A new Pixel Scroll just arrived!

And the book recs, they grow just like lava flows
As Mt. Tsundoku’s slopes reach the skies
And my bank account weeps as my rent money creeps
Into publishers’ pockets – b’bye!

Oh, pixels keep scrollin’ on
And comments keep rollin’ along…

Scroll us some pixels, Seven-Seventy
Serve up the news tonight
You’re the place that we go to be “in the know”
And the comments will roll in all night

51 thoughts on “Robert Hood – “Rev. Bob” – Has Died

  1. I’m shocked and sad and send my condolences to everyone here and his other friends and family, elsewhere. Farewell, Rev. Bob; you were a bright light and I’m very sorry you’re gone!

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