Walt Staples, a friend and fellow-traveler in the world of faith-inspired speculative fiction, passed away yesterday.
I didn’t know Walt very well, though I’ve been a fan of his writing for several years. Like a lot of former military men, he had a wry, world-weary sense of humor and a keen eye for the absurd that shined through his stories and made every one of them a treat for the mind and soul. Go read a few of them, and you’ll understand what I mean. In a society full of people who take themselves far too seriously, Walt was the antidote.
We both participated in collaborative writing projects with Splashdown Books, such as Aquasynthesis and Avenir Eclectia. Another connection was the imaginary worlds of Karina Fabian, in which we each wrote stories, his about zombie-fighting Marines, mine about spacefaring nuns. We had a few e-mail exchanges that confirmed the similarity of our tastes in fiction and the lighter side of life. I’d hoped to co-author a tale or two with him sometime, but I never imagined that opportunity would be lost so soon.
If the old hymn is true, he’s taking his turn at patrol along the streets of Heaven about now. Rest well, Marine.