Hasslein Blog: R.I.P.: Hasslein Books Co-founder Paul C. Giachetti

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Hasslein Blog

Friday, August 18, 2017

R.I.P.: Hasslein Books Co-founder Paul C. Giachetti

By Rich Handley

A picture is worth a thousand words. Here are a thousand pictures to prove it.

It is with the heaviest of hearts that I announce that one of my very best friends—basically, my brother—passed away two weeks ago today. Paul Giachetti was more than just my friend, however. He was also my business partner at Hasslein Books.

I've known Paul for almost 20 years, and have been close with him since very soon after meeting him. He was one of the kindest, most generous, most considerate people I've ever been fortunate enough to meet, and everyone who knew him felt the exact same way.

Paul and many of his closest friends at one of his New Year's Eve parties—a Paul Giachetti tradition...

...and at a more formal affair.

Paul was the author of two extremely well-received books, Total Immersion: The Comprehensive Unauthorized Red Dwarf Encyclopedia Volumes I and II, and he was also a 20-plus-year veteran of business-to-business magazines as an art director and graphic designer. Publishing was his passion, along with video games, Star Trek, Star Wars, StargateRick and Morty, South Park, Doctor Who, The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy, Babylon 5, The Fifth Element (he loved Mila Jovovich), cosplaying, and the British science-fiction comedy Red Dwarf.

But more than that, he was passionate about the people in his life. He adored his niece, his nephew, his brother, his sister-in-law, his parents, all of his friends, and the online Red Dwarf fan community, and that sentiment was returned tenfold. He was an uncle to the children of all his close friends, and he was someone you could always count on, no matter the circumstance.

When it comes to Red DwarfPaul wrote the book(s)—literally.

Paul's death was sudden and tragic, and those of us who knew him well are all heartsick at his passing. There are only a handful of people in my life whom I've ever considered among my "best friends"—it's a term I don't use lightly—but he was high on that list. He was also the perfect business partner. During the five years he and I worked together at a B2B magazine as managing editor and art director, and during the decade during which he and I ran Hasslein, we've never had even a SINGLE argument or disagreement about what direction to take.

That's not even hyperbole; we agreed on everything and took great joy in building this company up from a small, independent publisher to... well, to the small, independent publisher that it still is. I am privileged to have worked with several fantastic collaborators during my quarter-century as a published writer and editor, but Paul was in a class all by himself.

I can't imagine manning another convention booth without my friend and cohort.

My heart goes out to Paul's brother Jason, his sister-in-law Amy, his niece Mila, his nephew Luca, and his parents, John and Jennifer, who are dealing with something no one should ever have to deal with. Having lost my father (Vincent Handley), a brother (Eric Tyner), and other members of my family, I know what they're going through, and it breaks my heart. I can only hope they find consolation in knowing that all of his closest friends are shattered by the passing of someone who truly deserved the title of "friend," in the sense that what we really mean when we say it is "family."

It's almost impossible to find a photo of Paul when he wasn't smiling.

On the other hand...

Rest in peace, my brother. The words "You will be missed" are so inadequate to the task of summing up how we all feel about you. Now that you have begun your journey through time and relative dimensions in space, always remember to bring your towel and your multipass as you pass beyond the Rim, and never take any smeg from anyone.

Like the TARDIS, Paul's heart was much bigger on the inside.

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2 Comments:

At August 19, 2017 at 4:45 AM , Blogger Deborah Blake said...

I am so sorry for your loss, Rich. There are no words. *hug*

 
At August 19, 2017 at 5:37 AM , Blogger kezzlebob said...

I spent one weekend with Paul and it wasn't enough. We'd spoken online for so long it was like greeting an old friend when we finally met at Dimension Jump, the Red Dwarf convention. We'd planned on him staying with us after the next one so we could show him some amazing sites local to us in England and I'm beyond heartbroken that won't happen now, but am comforted by believing he can now visit them whenever he likes.
He'd be going mad at us now, with all this Star Trek crap so early in the morning! The online Red Dwarf community will feel his loss for a long time, and those of us fortunate enough to meet him are all the richer for it. xx

 

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