Today is Ursula Kroeber LeGuin’s eightieth birthday, and also the fortieth anniversary of the publication of Left Hand of Darkness.
I came across the Earthsea books at least thirty-five years ago (the actual date is rusty) at my local library and was never quite the same after that. Besides Left Hand and the Earthsea books, the LeGuin books that continue to rock my world with every re-read are The Dispossessed and Always Coming Home.
It was very important to me that Potlatch 18 (in Sunnyvale, CA earlier this year) honored Always Coming Home as one of its books of honor this year, because that book captures the physical reality and spirit of Northern California. Having Ursula there as part of the con made it even more special to me, because it was an opportunity to honor and thank somebody who created a special book while she is still here to hear it.
Thank you from the bottom of my heart, Ursula. May we have the blessing of your presence for years to come.