Joan Winston: Recollections and Tributes
Joan passed away on September 11, 2008. Additional Memorial Tributes are linked through a large table on the main page of this site.
Presented as Part of A COMPANION IN ZEOR'S
Thirtieth Anniversary Year
Part of A Companion in
Recollections, for inclusion, can be e-mailed to Karen MacLEOD
tributes are linked through a table at the bottom of this page.
Please note in your subject line JOAN WINSTON, or something similar, to weed out from the spam this address receives.
From Anne Pinzow
Joanie was the best friend anyone could ever hope to have. Once you were lucky enough to have her call you friend, she was loyal, generous, considerate and even your advocate. She'd fight for you tooth and nail if she felt you needed help and she always put herself out for her friends. It's probably apt that she died on September 11th because the world will truly be diminished by her passing.
ON JOAN WINSTON'S COAT TAILS
Joanie Winston was not only the key contributor to Star Trek Lives! by Jacqueline Lichtenberg, Sondra Marshak and Joan Winston (Bantam paperback about Star Trek fans - a first in publishing, a book about fans of a TV show, not the show itself) but she became a best friend.
I first met her through Sondra Marshak. I had attended the first big Star Trek convention in New York City, but just sitting in the audience, having just commuted in from the northern suburb of NYC where I lived. At that convention, I heard two women behind me talking about Star Trek fanzines and in particular about this odd series of Trek stories in a single universe but by several people.
I turned around and said that I was the author who created that universe. While we waited for Gene Roddenberry to speak, Kraith Collected (to read it free, go to http://www.simegen.com/fandom/startrek/ ) was born because they were frustrated by the way all the stories were spread over so many zines, some impossible to find.
At that convention, I also first shook hands with Gene Roddenberry, told him about the Star Trek Lives! project and got his promise that he'd write us an introduction -- which years later, he did!
But the next year, Sondra Marshak insisted we all had to stay at the hotel for the whole convention. I blew into Star Trek fandom on Joan Winston's coat tails. Literally. One blustery day I breezed into the hotel front doors following Joanie, carrying stuff for the convention. We roomed with Joanie, and I helped sell signed photos of the stars and assorted collectibles from Joan's table in the dealer's room. We also had the first copies of the first volume of Kraith Collected on the table (those days things were printed on paper).
That was the first time in my whole life that a total stranger ASKED FOR MY AUTOGRAPH. I signed the cover of Kraith Collected 1 while selling things for Joanie.
Rooming with Joanie at cons or sleeping over at her Manhattan apartment was always an adventure. I would go to Manhattan, pay the ridiculous parking fees, and stay overnight with Joanie to watch her 3/4 inch JVC tapes of Star Trek! She got professional tape player equipment via connections where she worked -- long before such an item was for sale in retail stores.
At one con, I slept on a hotel mattress lumpy because the BLOOPER REELS were tucked under me for safe keeping (that was before people really knew what they were but had only heard rumors). At another, I carried some film cans that belonged to Gene Roddenberry as carry-on baggage on an airplane (I can just see trying that today! The TSA guards don't know what actual film looks like!) At yet another, I was appointed guardian of Gene Roddenberry's briefcase heavy with the (paper) manuscript for The Questor Tapes. (top secret at the time) At yet another occasion she brought a writing assignment to our hotel room -- we had to write the Voice Over text for a commercial one of the stars was shooting -- in ONE HOUR! (we did it) And at another occasion, she brought me to one of the star's rooms to give a Tarot reading because I was getting pretty good at that.
There were literally hundreds of these little incidents any time you got near the whirlwind known as Joanie.
We used to go clothes shopping together, raiding the NYC boutiques for bargains, and later developed an annual tradition of going to Shore Leave (a Baltimore Star Trek convention) together. She'd take the bus up to my house in the suburbs, then I'd drive to Baltimore (we'd listen to Theodore Bikel or show tunes like the music from Dirty Dancing and sing along!) Our duo routine became a traditional Friday afternoon opening event.
We'd talk on the phone for hours at a time about all the new TV shows and the SF books we were reading, and Joanie knew "everyone," and was known to "everyone" so I learned thousands of things I couldn't tell anyone. Even after I moved to Arizona, we talked and talked and TALKED.
I can't tell you how I miss her! I can't tell you how thankful I am to those who sent cards, photos, and visited her during the last year or so. Joanie was a giver. It was her turn to be given to.
Live Long and Prosper,
Creator of the Sime~Gen Universe
where a mutation makes the evolutionary
division into male and female
pale by comparison.