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Jay Lake

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Jay Lake
Lake in 2004
Lake in 2004
BornJoseph Edward Lake, Jr.
(1964-06-06)June 6, 1964
DiedJune 1, 2014(2014-06-01) (aged 49)
Portland, Oregon, U.S.
OccupationWriter, product manager
PeriodEarly 21st century
GenreScience fiction, fantasy
Notable awardsCampbell Award for Best New Writer (2004)

Joseph Edward "Jay" Lake, Jr.[1] (June 6, 1964 – June 1, 2014) was an American science fiction and fantasy writer. In 2003 he was a quarterly first-place winner in the Writers of the Future contest. In 2004 he won the John W. Campbell Award for Best New Writer in Science Fiction. He lived in Portland, Oregon, and worked as a product manager for a voice services company.

Lake's writings appeared in numerous publications, including Postscripts, Realms of Fantasy, Interzone, Strange Horizons, Asimov's Science Fiction, Nemonymous, and the Mammoth Book of Best New Horror. He was an editor for the "Polyphony" anthology series from Wheatland Press, and was also a contributor to The Internet Review of Science Fiction.

Personal life


Lake was born in Taipei, Taiwan; he was the eldest of three children born to Joseph Edward Lake (a U.S. foreign service officer serving in Taiwan at the time). As a child he lived in Nigeria;[1] Dahomey (now called Benin); Canada; Washington, D.C.; and returned to Taiwan for a number of years when his father was posted there a second time. He attended high school at Choate Rosemary Hall (in Connecticut) and later graduated from the University of Texas in 1986.[1]

Lake publicly revealed his advanced case of colon cancer.[2] He was diagnosed in April 2008, and it then "progressed from a single tumor to metastatic disease affecting the lung and liver, recurring after multiple surgeries and chemotherapy courses."[3][4][5][6] He used crowd funding through YouCaring to pay for whole genome sequencing, towards the "small possibility that the results of such a test...may suggest a treatment path."[3][4][5][6] Lake died of the illness on June 1, 2014, just five days before his 50th birthday.[7]

Lake is the subject of a documentary called Lakeside – A Year With Jay Lake by Waterloo Productions. The film, which follows Lake's fight against cancer, had a special work-in-progress screening August 30, 2013, at the World Science Fiction Convention in San Antonio.[8][9] As of May 2014, it is in post-production and is scheduled to premier at Sasquan in Spokane Washington during the 73rd World Science Fiction Convention on August 21, 2015.[10]

His posthumously published collection Last Plane to Heaven was honored with the 2015 Endeavour Award.[11]



The City Imperishable

  • Trial of Flowers (October 2006) Night Shade Books (ISBN 1-59780-056-2)
  • Madness of Flowers (October 2009) Night Shade Books (ISBN 1-59780-098-8)
  • Reign of Flowers (unpublished)

In addition to these three novels there are at least two more stories set in the City Imperishable:

Mainspring universe


In addition to these three novels there are at least two more novellas set in the Mainspring Universe:

Green universe

  • Green (June 2009) Tor Books
  • Endurance (November 2011)
  • Kalimpura (January 2013)

In addition to these three novels there are at least two more stories set in the world of Green:

  • "A Water Matter" (Tor.com, 2008)
  • "The Passion of Mother Vajpai" (with Shannon Page) in Subterranean: Tales of Dark Fantasy 2 (ed. by William Schafer, 2011)

Sunspin Universe


Other novels




Other works


METAtropolis: The Wings We Dare Aspire, with Ken Scholes, WordFire Press (May 2014) (978-1614751564)

Edited works


Short fiction

Title Year First published in Reprinted in
The stars do not lie 2012 Asimov's Science Fiction 36/10&11 (Oct/Nov 2012)
Rock of Ages 2013 METAropolis: Green Space (Audible) The Year's Best Science Fiction, Thirty-First Annual Collection


  1. ^ a b c "Jay Lake: Feathers and Tails". Locus. June 2006.
  2. ^ Pepitone, Julianne (January 21, 2013). "PayPal: 'Aggressive changes' coming to frozen funds policy". CNNMoney.com. Retrieved January 21, 2013.
  3. ^ a b Kuehner, Michael (April 9, 2014). "Raising Money Through Crowdfunding? Don't Forget to Include It on Your Taxes". The Penny Hoarder. Taylor Media. Retrieved 19 November 2017.
  4. ^ a b Locus Online staff (January 10, 2013). "Swell of Support for Jay Lake". Locus Online. Locus. Retrieved 19 November 2017.
  5. ^ a b Owens, Simon (June 6, 2014). "The legacy of Jay Lake, the novelist who blogged his own death". The Daily Dot. DailyDot.com. Retrieved 19 November 2017.
  6. ^ a b Scalzi, John (January 10, 2013). "A Fundraiser for Jay Lake — With Extra Added Whimsy". Whatever. WordPress. Retrieved 19 November 2017.
  7. ^ "[cancer] The end has come". Portland, OR: Joseph E. Lake, Jr. June 1, 2014. Archived from the original on June 1, 2014. Retrieved June 1, 2014.
  8. ^ "Lakeside advanced screening exclusive to LoneStarCon3". Waterloo Productions. Archived from the original on January 19, 2014. Retrieved January 19, 2014. It is with great pleasure that Waterloo Productions, LLC. announces the world premiere on our documentary: LAKESIDE – A Year With Jay Lake. Please join subject Jay Lake and director Donnie G. Reynolds as they introduce the film on Friday August 30th in San Antonio, Texas during WorldCon.
  9. ^ "Press Release #29 LONESTARCON 3 TO FEATURE AUTHOR JAY LAKE WITH FILM PREMIERE AND SPECIAL EXHIBIT" (Press release). LoneStarCon 3, The 71st World Science Fiction Convention. August 7, 2013. Archived from the original on February 1, 2014. Retrieved January 19, 2014. LoneStarCon 3, the 71st World Science Fiction Convention ("Worldcon"), will be featuring the world premiere of the documentary "Lakeside," about author Jay Lake's battle with cancer, as well as a special exhibit based on Jay Lake's genome.
  10. ^ "Lakeside (2014)". IMDb.com. September 9, 2013. Retrieved January 19, 2014.
  11. ^ "Locus Online News » Lake Wins 2015 Endeavor Award". www.locusmag.com. 2015-11-24. Retrieved 2015-11-25.
  12. ^ "Flowers". Night Shade Books. Archived from the original on 2009-09-09.