Members of the horror writing community were deeply saddened earlier this week when our good friend and mentor, Bob Booth, the man who started NECON, the Northeastern Writers Conference, and the founder of NECON EBooks, passed away earlier this week, after a courageous battle with lung cancer.
“Papa Necon” leaves behind a legacy that will be difficult to match.
While I never was close to Bob, I’d known him for a while, since I first attended NECON in 2001.
Bob Booth was a gifted storyteller and a visionary. He was one of the first people I heard singing the praises of EBooks as the wave of the future. He made his case well, and from the very first time I heard him speak about the subject on a panel at NECON several years ago, I’ve been paying attention.
He was also a very generous man. When I proposed several EBook projects last year, he was quick to say he was interested in all of them. As a result, he published L.L. Soares’ and my Cinema Knife Fight Volume 1 Collection, my IN THE SPOOKLIGHT collection, my short story collection, and most recently a novel, all as EBooks under the NECON EBooks label. I will be forever grateful to him for this opportunity.
Professionalism aside, Bob was also a lot of fun. He told the best stories, and listening to him at NECON was always a treat.
I always remained somewhat in awe of Bob, knowing that he socialized and was revered and respected by so many of the great horror authors of our time. He was also a great fan of horror, and he often reminded me of a New England version of Forry Ackerman, specifically of the horror writing world.
Yet this never prevented Bob from speaking to me and everyone else on the same level, as if we had always been old pals. He put you at ease naturally, and it was a pleasure to sit and listen to “Papa Necon.”
Bob will always live in our hearts. I’m thankful to have known him.
—In memory of Bob Booth 1947-2013—
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