We decided to ask some of the writers and artists who hang out in the Green Man Pub to say a few words about Charles de Lint and his endeavours. Here's what they said...
Charles de Lint could be a character in his own books. He's kind, generous, and can tell stories for hours that keep a crowd rapt and silent and smiling. His writing evokes the numinous and the strange, while promising that friendship, coffee, and art will forge found families strong enough to get us through the mundane. His work changed the way I saw the world and it was entirely for the better.
It's a good thing the Neighbors Under the Hill have stopped carrying off the best tune-makers and singers and tellers of tales, or Charles de Lint would have disappeared long ago. Instead, he stays here in the mortal world, giving away all their secrets. It's enough to make the Neighbors long for the old days, it is.
I'm an avid reader of Charles de Lint's short fiction. I especially love the Newford stories, inhabited by charming characters who get themselves into all kinds of predicaments--often involving magic.
Can I move there, please?
Charles DeLint is an impossibly, ridiculously talented sort of man -- and I've been reading him for so long that he pretty much crafted my own ideas of what a fairy tale ought to be. The very first thing of his I ever read was Jack the Giant Killer, and it has stayed with me for fifteen years now ... always lurking in the back of my head, reminding me of how you do this right. His contributions to the field of speculative fiction in general (and fairy tales in particular) are absolutely beyond measure.
As soon as I read Charles de Lint's 'Ghosts of Wind and Shadow' in Cicada Magazine, I knew two things: first, his writing was sheer magic; second, he had a teenage audience just waiting to happen. I've now published one de Lint story collection (Waifs and Strays, a World Fantasy Award Finalist), one de Lint/Charles Vess picture book (A Circle of Cats, also a World Fantasy Award Finalist), one novel (The Blue Girl, an ALA Best Book for Young Adults and a Locus Recommended Reading Selection), and four paperback novel reissues -- as well as a number of anthologized stories -- and I know a little bit more. Charles himself is every bit as delightful, empathetic, sensitive, and moral (in the best sense of the word) as his work. He knows that reading can change lives, and the right book can save you.
He has a truly wicked sense of humor. He knows I'll believe pretty much anything said with a straight face. You can guess the rest.
He is a generous and honest person -- and his wife and creative partner, MaryAnn Harris, is every bit as terrific as he is.
I am honored to know and work with them both.
Charles de Lint is a good-hearted man, an excellent writer and a fine musician. He was kind enough to blurb one of my books, and this is my chance to return the favor to him!
Everyone knows about Charles de Lint. The guy's a national treasure. His lyrical relationship with nature and magic is legendary. He knows everything cool about trees, crows, and fairies. And he's a ferocious filker to boot. Catch up with Jilly and Geordie in his latest book from Tor, Widdershins!
As a reader, one of de Lint's prime abilities is the strength of his characterization. I never want his books to end because the people that inhabit his stories have by then become close friends and I want them to stay in my life forever. I mean, who wouldn't want to hang out with Jilly Coppercorn?
And on a professional level I love illustrating his texts because he has developed a written worldscape that is close to my own and it makes me very happy to let other people see that particular, very human landscape.
What can I add about Charles that has not already been said by reviewers, deLint fanatics, neighbors, friends? I have known him for. . .forever. Well, at least from the time his first book came out. I have edited a few of his short stories (he's a dream!) and spoken many of his poems aloud (ditto for them), enjoyed hosting him at my house (where the redoubtable Maryann gave me one of her great tag sale silver pin finds). You simply cannot meet a sweeter, funnier, dearer soul than Charles. A man of many talents who never let's you think about his talents as he is always interested in yours. A man who never raises his voice except to sing. A man who makes the world a better place than he found it. No, not a saint. Not that. (He would get the giggling fits if I suggested that.) But someone who you put in your little packet of friends to be marooned on a forgotten island with. Along with his books (Crow girls a fave in this house) and his fiddle. And yes, of course, Maryann!