The Bay Area literary community lost one of its brightest lights this morning, when after a lengthy battle, Kathi Kamen Goldmark succumbed to cancer - she was 63.
Kathi was one of the very special ones, and I can't overstate how wonderful the moments we shared together were. She possessed a kindness and care that is rare these days, and her buoyant charm put smiles on faces whenever she came into a room.
Kathi was a tireless proponent of the written word. She was a novelist, a journalist, and the producer of West Coast Live. She and her husband, Sam Barry, worked closely with emerging authors, offering advice on how to succeed in the publishing world in both their column / blog Author Enablers, and in their book, Write That Book Already. We sat together on the Litquake board. In 2007 Kathi was named a San Francisco Literary Laureate, and in 2008 was the recipient of The Women's National Book Association Award. November 8th, 2008 was Kathi Kamen Goldmark Day in San Francisco by Mayoral Proclamation, and on that day, Kathi also received a Certificate of Recognition from the California Legislature for “...outstanding achievements in the arts and literary fields.”
Kathi's love of literature was matched by her passion for music. In 1992 alongside Amy Tan, Stephen King and the Barry Brothers, she was a founding member of The Rock-Bottom Remainders and since that time, the band has raised in the neighborhood of two million dollars for various charities.
Kathi was a dear friend, not only to myself, but to many of us here at Green Apple Books. We loved her, and will miss her.