I first met Michael Louis Calvillo at the Stoker Weekend in Long Island, New York. I knew that he was badly ill with cancer, but I could hardly tell. Michael seemed full of life and energy. He was armed with quick wit and a great sense of humor. I attended a workshop on author’s debut novels in which Michael was one of the panelists. He said that he had developed his writing skills by sending love letters to his girlfriend, who would later become his wife. I had never heard that before. That response really struck me. It told me a lot about Michael both as a person and as a writer.
I met Michael the following year at the World Horror Convention in Utah. This time his cancer was much more apparent, yet he still maintained a great attitude and was fun to be around. Although Michael was an exceptionally talented writer, he was an even better person.
–Carl Alves – author of Blood Street
I recall the same panel about debut novels. It was special to me because I was on the panel along with MLC. The other fellow on the panel didn’t show. JG Faherty moderated, asking us both questions. Funny, Michael and I were already really good friends and we got to have our own panel together! I didn’t know how unique it truly was until I could look back, after Michael had passed away. At the time, I knew he had a battle ahead of him, but I didn’t know how long it would last or if it would end on the terms he wanted. He worshiped every facet of life. Everything about it. Michael Calvillo had a black belt in Love, a true master, and I really believe had he not been who he was, the cancer would have claimed him in a matter of months, rather than almost a year and a half.
His novel AS FATE WOULD HAVE IT remains one of my favorites. By his taste in movies and all we discussed, it was obvious he adored domestic cannibal themed horror. Therefore it’s awesome he got to put his own fingerprints on the subgenre. I know a ton of people will read him and celebrate his work in the years to come. His talent and his legacy deserves to go on with all the trailblazers of horror and the macabre.
–Benjamin Kane Ethridge – author of Black and Orange
Visit Ben at http://bkethridge.com/
Michael Louis Calvillo’s been gone most of this year, and a strange
thing has happened: I’ve thought about him almost every day. This is
strange because we weren’t incredibly close while he was alive; I
never went to his house, or talked to him on the phone, or exchanged
long e-mail correspondences. Yes, I met his wife and daughter, I even
met his mom and siblings at one convention, we went to each others’
readings and signings, but that seemed casual to me at the time.
Except now I’ve realized…it wasn’t. Michael was without doubt that
rarest of things in life: A kindred soul. Yes, his work staggered me,
but that was due in part to how connected I felt to it instantly. When
I read I WILL RISE or AS FATE WOULD HAVE IT, I felt as if I’d known
this guy for my whole life.
And while I’ve lost others I’ve cared about, some who were also taken
too young, none felt so cruelly ripped away as Michael Louis Calvillo.
Since I write at home and work in a bookstore during the day, I’m
surrounded by constant reminders of him – his books are always there -
and at least once a day I’d like to grab Fate or the Reaper or God or
whatever by the throat and slap ‘im silly for this grotesque cosmic
joke. Screw You, Big Eternal Jerk, for taking MLC at 37. And if you’ve
got a boss, be sure to pass that message onto Him, too.
–Lisa Morton – author of The Castle of Los Angeles
Visit Lisa at http://lisamorton.com/
Please support Michael’s favorite charity Lancers for Life at https://www.facebook.com/pages/Lancers-4-Life/161774634048