William Bradley, a Brilliant Essayist Gone Too Soon
August 29, 2017 § 11 Comments
By Dinty W. Moore
The nonfiction community lost a bright intellect and fierce advocate yesterday with the death of our friend William Bradley.
William wrote of his battle with cancer and the love he had for his wife Emily this past December here on the Brevity blog, and authored the flash essay “Julio at Large,” a beautiful mediation on freedom and “shitty coal mining towns,” for Brevity magazine in 2010.
He was endlessly curious, funny, generous, and enthusiastic about life and the world. His essay collection Fractals demonstrated all of that, as did his many essays, creative and scholarly, appearing in Salon, Utne Reader, The Chronicle of Higher Education, Creative Nonfiction, Fourth Genre, The Normal School and everywhere else.
Two years back, with the help of his friend Christian Exoo, he one-upped me in the search for the origins of the term creative nonfiction, because he was tireless, and so so smart.
I’m giving his good friend Christian the last word here:
He was the model for the man I wanted to be. Bill was one of the best friends I’ve ever had. He was kind, he was generous, and he loved Emily Isaacson more than I’ve ever seen a husband love a wife. He was smart and funny and truly a beautiful human being. I’m deeply grateful that I got to be his friend for the last 18 years. My hope is that he is remembered fondly as a writer and friend.
Goodnight, sweet prince, and flights of angels sing thee to thy rest.