has died as hit the twitter and other feeds.
I don't quite remember when I discovered The Dragonriders of Pern. I remember that I fell in love with it and read it over and over and that I was young enough to think it was all very daring and edgy and what would my mother think if she knew I was reading a book where the inside cover used the word DESIRE (old green cover of Dragonflight and the passage with Ramouth's first flight with Mnementh). OMG DRAGONS and OMG DRAGONS AND SEX. And then, whoa, wait a minute, those are all men with green dragons so that means HOMOSEXUAL SEX WITH DRAGONS. It was without a doubt my first exposure to same sex relationships.
Yes, I was young and it was the 70s and early to mid 80s. It was in the same time when I was searching for something other than Middle Earth, Prydain, and Narnia. I was in the throes of Star Wars, watching old Trek, and trying out all the others -- Thomas Covenant and the first Terry Brooks and Marion Zimmer Bradley (Mists, Darkover) then classic science fiction. I didn't notice the squick and the consent issues and sexist bits and other things in those days because OMG DRAGONS. I was in high school and then early college years and I was waiting for Empire Strikes Back to come out and then Ewoks.
Thank gawd there was no Internet for me to spin out my wish fulfillment involving me at Harper Hall (can't sing or play a note) or me at Cove Hold or me at Benden Weyr impressing A QUEEN DRAGON. I'm not sure if I wanted to be Brekke or Lessa -- probably wanted to be Lessa but knew I was more like Brekke. (Never Kylara or Mirrim or a drudge. Maybe a Head Woman since I was a good cook at age 16. I was SPESHUL right? right?). The series became uneven, to be sure, but I still read it and I still love those original books.
We've all read them, haven't we? I know it influenced how I wrote mental connections between characters in my first fics. I cried (and still do) when Robinton and Zair died.