I was shocked and saddened this evening to read that Joel Lane died in his sleep last night. I never met him, but we did correspond by email on the occasions when he submitted stories to ST. The stories were excellent, but he was quite modest about them. I never had the courage to ask him why he'd submitted his work to an amateur editor who couldn't even afford to pay him.
It's hard to believe Joel Lane's no longer around. His continuing presence as a major British talent was for many of us simply a given - a writer of real insight and impressive intellect. He was classed as a horror writer, but his short stories can bear comparison with those of any contemporary writer regardless of genre.
A tribute from Mark Valentine can be read here. I'm sure there will be many more in the days to come.
From some of my Facebook friends, I culled the following comments:
Joel Lane was one of the most phenomenal and underappreciated writers of his generation, one of the weird fiction genre's most insightful commentators, a poet of brilliance and distinction and one of the most principled, honest people I've ever known.
Joel was a fine fellow, a great writer, and an insightful critic. He will be sorely missed...
I'm utterly devastated. Stunned and devastated. Joel Lane was a formidable talent, and I'm going to miss him terribly.
Joel Lane ... a good friend, a kind and generous soul, and an effortlessly superb writer, who in all the darkness and chaos of the literary world we inhabited together, never once forgot those basic messages of human love, empathy and understanding.