Mike Resnick (1942-2020)

Mike Resnick at Chicon 7 in 2012. Photo by Joel Zakem.

Mike Resnick, who at his zenith was one of the most popular figures in the science fiction fan and pro community, died January 9. He was nominated for the Hugo Award 37 times, winning 5, and 11 Nebula nominations, with 1 win. He was a Guest of Honor at Chicon 7 in 2012.

His daughter, Laura Resnick, announced his passing in an update to the GoFundMe created for his medical expenses.

He was diagnosed in November with a very aggressive form of lymphoma. Treatment initially went well, and we were very hopeful. But his health and strength began to decline sharply in mid-December, and a few days ago, the doctors told us they had made a decision to discontinue treatment, there was no hope, and they recommended hospice care.

Pop chose not to tell anyone how ill he was, because he was so convinced he’d get better and soon be his old self again. He mostly slept during his final days, but when awake he was in good spirits. He passed away quietly in his sleep, without pain or further suffering.

His connection to his friends, his readers, and his colleagues enriched his life, and he never stopped being delighted to meet people who read his work, who were interested in writing, who loved books and stories, and who shared his sense of wonder. He remained enthusiastic about his craft and devoted to his writing to the end of his life, and was always thrilled to be part of the science fiction community, as both a fan and a pro. He taught me a lot about being a writer and a professional.

My dad met my mom nearly 60 years ago and has been devoted to her ever since. She said to me this morning that no one could have had a better husband. My mom will miss him more than anyone, but we know he will be missed by many people.

He will be cremated, as per his wishes, in a private family service. We will plan a memorial/remembrance gathering for him later this year, at a location where we hope many of his friends can be present–maybe a convention.

Meanwhile, his long illness leaves his widow, my mom, with many large medical bills, while grieving his loss, and without him being here to generate any more income. In his memory, if you would like to help her, his medical GoFundMe is still running.

On my dad’s behalf, thank you for all the good times, good laughs, and good memories he enjoyed in what was a happy and fulfilling life.

Donate to the GoFundMe here.

Photos of Mike Resnick taken throughout his career by Andrew Porter. (c) Andrew Porter.

25 thoughts on “Mike Resnick (1942-2020)

  1. Very sad news. I knew him for years online on Compuserve’s then-thriving SF forums, where he was affectionately called “Bwana”. And I’ve met him in person at a dozen or so past Windycons.

    He will be missed. My condolences to his family.

  2. I’ve been an admirer of Mike Resnick’s contributions to the field for decades. His name seemed to be everywhere and was always a pretty good indicator of something worth picking up.

    I read on Wikipedia that as of 2014 he had collaborated with 52 different writers on short fiction (and another 5 on screenplays and novels). There ought to be a Resnick Number to measure the collaborative distance between a writer and Mike.

    My condolences to Laura and the rest of his family, as well as those of you on File 770 who were his friends.

  3. Very sad to hear and my condolences to his family. I remember his daughter Laura used to comment here and I hope she’s doing well.

  4. My condolences to his family and friends on the loss of a man who I am sure will leave a tremendous hole in their lives–as he does in the sf/f community. May his memory live on.

  5. Mike was a friend of 40-some years, always willing to lend a hand (or pen or typewriter) when asked. During the RiverCon years he wrote several author profiles for the program books at my request, usually responding by return mail or when the internet came along literally within minutes (unless it was morning!). That he will be greatly missed is an understatement.

  6. SIGH I had the pleasure of meeting Mr. Resnick at my first and only Worldcon. I love his work and enjoyed meeting him. Condolences to his family and friends.

    Requiescat In Pace.

  7. I met him once, at Loscon in Long Beach. I got to walk him through to whichever place he was trying to find. (The LB convention center is a little confusing.)

  8. Loved his books. Saw him many times at Windycon. Quite a guy, smart, opinionated, and funny. I had the honor of sharing a panel with him once (although he wouldn’t have recognized me, a complete nobody, five minutes later. A giant in the field.

  9. My condolences to Laura and Carol, as well as the rest of his family and loved ones.

    Mike gave me the greatest boon of an aspiring writer of anyone, frankly. We were talking at a convention, and he asked what I was working on, and I told him. He said, “I couldn’t write that.” I boggled, given how much he had written (or ghost written). It really made me feel like I had something to say.

  10. Sad to hear. Condolences to Laura and Carol and all of his good friends, of which there are many. I’ve had the chance to chat with him a number of times at cons over the years. The most memorable was prior to LA Con IV (I think) when I was there the day before things started and he was hanging out in the lounge just chatting with anyone who came by. He edited the Space Cadets anthology for the con which I have one of the lower numbered copies of the signed edition, which is one of my favorite collectibles.

  11. I was able to make him happy once by telling him how much I enjoyed the two Under [Foreign] Skies anthologies he coedited. He said they sold so poorly he never heard anybody talking about them, and he liked them, too.

  12. A great one has passed away. Unfortunately, in Germany, were I live, he’s nearly unknown. Only a handful of his novels and stories have been translated.

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