Emily Meier, RIP

On behalf on Lulu:

I just received this email from Emily’s husband.


Emily died last night at a little after 9. She was peaceful and without pain. She stopped breathing for 15 seconds or so, and then took a big breath. Then stopped again for longer, and then took another breath, not as strong as the first. Then a third, and a fourth. And then no more.

She was a wonderful person and a wonderful wife.


I’m really going to miss my correspondence with her. She was a terrific friend, a wonderful writer, a devoted wife, mother and grandmother, and a political junkie extraordinaire. She’s at peace now dammit.

I will never forget her generosity, humor, and intelligence, especially demonstrated when she discussed Suite Harmonic with us.

14 Responses

  1. I’m sorry to hear of the loss to her husband and all those who had the pleasure of knowing her.


  2. Emily’s husband sent me a link this morning to her obituary in one of the Minneapolis papers.

    Meier, Emily Moran 68, a fiction writer and resident of St. Paul, died of cancer on January 11, 2013, at the J. A. Wedum Residential Hospice in Brooklyn Park, Minnesota. Born on June 10, 1944 in Decatur, Illinois to Mark R. and Marianne Williams Moran, she married Robert C. Meier in Bayport, Minnesota on September 4, 1965 and is survived by him. She is also survived by a daughter, Whitney Ferrer (Javier), and son, Adam Meier (Sara), and six grandsons, Benjamin, Nicolas, and Daniel Ferrer, and Owen, Tate, and Casey Meier, a brother, John Moran, and his children, Michael and Jennifer, and many other nieces and nephews. Emily graduated with a Bachelor’s degree in American History from Brown University in 1966, and Master’s degrees in American History from the University of Arizona in 1968 and in Creative Writing from the University of Minnesota in 1992. The books Emily published include the Civil War historical novel ‘Suite Harmonic: A Civil War Novel of Rediscovery,’ the novels ‘Time Stamp,’ ‘The Second Magician’s Tale,’ and ‘Clare, Loving,’ as well as two collections of short stories. Emily’s fiction has appeared widely, including in The Second Penguin Book of Modern Women’s Short Stories, the North American Review, Prairie Schooner, and the Threepenny Review. She won national fiction contests at the Florida Review and Passages North and was a recipient of a Minnesota State Arts Board fellowship, a Loft-McKnight fiction award, and a fellowship from the National Endowment for the Arts. In the last years of her life, while battling cancer, Emily created an independent publishing house, Sky Spinner Press, and created a website, skyspinnerpress.com, focused on her publications and her approach to the writing craft. Interment will be in Maple Hill Cemetery, New Harmony, Indiana. In honor of Emily’s lifelong love of music and reading, the family suggests that memorial contributions be made to the fund set up in her name through the MusicLink Foundation, which links students with professional music teachers and makes lessons and instruments more affordable for these students, 1043 N. McKinley Rd., Arlington, VA 22206 (musiclinkfoundation.org) or in time spent mentoring children in reading.


  3. She was a truly inspirational person. After she found out the cancer had returned and metastasized to her bones she committed herself 100% to her legacy and her publishing house. She always told me she hated promoting her books but her desire that they live after she was gone kept her motivated and reaching out for avenues of promotion.

    Another of her interests not listed above was the lack of female voices and writers in positions of authority on the internet and news sources. It’s something we discussed frequently and was one of the reasons she tried to keep active commenting and writing as long as she could and encouraged me to do the same. In addition to Greg she was also great friends with Josh Marshall at Talking Points Memo. About a month ago Josh wrote a nice piece about Emily and her work.


    Last year when I had so many health scares and was waiting for results of numerous frightening tests she reached out to me and talked very openly and personally about what was happening to her. In doing so she gave me both encouragement, reassurance and strength when I needed them the most. I’ll always be grateful to her for that.

    She so enjoyed our discussion of her book and used many of our comments in the promotion of her book. I was so happy I could give her something back after everything she’d done for me. I would like to thank all of you who participated, it really meant a lot to her and she truly enjoyed the experience.

    Ever since I first suspected she was ill a couple of years ago we talked about her coming out here and going to the beach together like a couple of teenagers. It’s amazing to become so close to someone I’ve never met and I will always treasure her friendship and endeavor to live up to her standard as a gracious and involved woman.

    Rest in peace my friend.


  4. Thanks for bringing Emily into our lives, lms. My condolences to her family and friends.


  5. My condolences too, again. I hope all who read her book(s) have taken the time to post a review on Amazon to help carry on her marketing dream. I believe you can also do so on Sky Spinner, but I would have to check back to be sure.

    lms, I echo Mike’s thanks for bringing her into our lives. I too had separate email correspondence with her. Even as she battled her cancer she took the time to give me some important tips and pointers on my own genealogical search. I had emailed her really as a way of reaching out and possibly providing a slight respite through distraction, not really expecting her to respond. I was pleasantly surprised and impressed that she took the time to do so. But I guess that was just the kind of wonderful person she was.


  6. Okie, she did the same for me and I just mentioned at the PL that I found out just recently that my ancestors fought for the Confederacy. I keep imagining the kind of discussion we could be having about that. Up until very recently she was still tracking down letters to add to her family history.

    The last email I received from her was Dec. 26 so that really indicates the passion she had for life and information up until the very end. I’m glad she was able to encourage you as well.


  7. lms, both through her commentary and private emails, she impacted my worldview. As you have, as well.


  8. Hahaha, and I too have ancestors who fought for the Confederacy. Given my personal views, it is an interesting “what if.”


  9. I know, I was so embarrassed…………..hahahaha. But I also found out my grandfather seven generations removed was a Capt. for the Revolutionary Army….my saving grace.


  10. Goes to show, genealogy also informs current worldviews. The “embarrassment” serves a purpose/impetus, at least for some.


  11. Let me also express by sympathies to Emily’s family and those here who knew her well. I am also greatful for the opportunity to have participated in the discussion of her book. It is hard for me to imagine spending that much time and effort on such a project and to be so successful in weaving actual history with the story. I will definitely add my review of the book to amazon.


  12. I too would like to express my condolences. I know that I have not participated a lot lately and really not at all for the book reviews. That said, I did read a number of them and found that conversing with an author to be truly fascinating and really wished I could have been part of that discussion. So much so that one of my New Years resolutions was to read more.


  13. Michi, thanks for posting. I looked for Suite Harmonic for my wfe for Christmas. Emily had reported it was at a local booksellers, but I couldn’t find it. I’ll try skyspinner.


  14. Good for Greg:

    “R.I.P., Emily Meier

    Posted by Greg Sargent on January 15, 2013 at 5:11 pm”



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