We have selected two organizations if you would like to donate in his name: "Taos Toolbox" (a writers workshop) and "Beyond Rescue" (an animal rescue run by his friend, Corina, who gave his dog a home after his passing) Here's how to donate:

Taos Toolbox - Paypal: - or - make checks payable to: Walter Jon Williams, 16 James Sanchez Lane, Belen, NM 87002 (please write "Chris Cornell Scholarship" on the check memo line).

Beyond Rescue - go to website & click on donate: 

Posted by Alison V on June 12, 2020
Chris - its been a weird year. You just wouldn't believe it if I could time travel back and tell you about the current state of events. I wish I could hear your voice and your thoughts. You'll be proud to know I have started a "Writing Your Way Home" writing group for is a timed writing group, based upon lyrics or poems . I deliver "jump off lines" to help get people going. The we write, non stop for 10 minutes. We then share. No cross talk, judgement, correction. It's been transformative work, and very healing. I think of you every time I begin a 90 minute class. I hope you'd be proud. I'm also live streaming productions from my home - which you wouldn't believe. My home studio is sweet and I work with friends from school in Germany. The circle closes. I am hugging you from afar. Hope you can feel it. <3. Love you.
Posted by Walter Jon Williams on June 11, 2020
I would like to let everyone know that the Chris Cornell Scholarship to the Taos Toolbox writers workshop was awarded this year to new student Thea Boodhoo. 

Your generosity last year enabled a participant who otherwise couldn't have afforded to attend the opportunity to fully participate. Thank you all.

Walter Jon Williams
Posted by Debbie Goelz on June 10, 2020
I cannot believe a year has gone by since we lost Chris. I miss his bright spirit, quick wit, intelligence, and kindness every day. The world is poorer without him. Love you, Chris!
Posted by Jacquelyn Stone on June 10, 2020
It's hard to believe but Chris left us a year ago. I still miss him every single day and deal with accepting it every single day. Let's all take a moment today to remember his face, his laugh, his wit, his talent. I'll be lighting a candle to help me celebrate the light he brought into the world. When going through his things, we found this poem that he wrote when he was in high school. His writing abilities began early:

by Chris Cornell 1985

Imagination calls to me
Soft whispers on the wind
The urge is irresistible
It's waiting round the bend
What awaits me in this land
Where dreams and reality fuse?
Every image that you conjure
Lives for you to use
The door is open to us all
Don't waste the chance; be bold
Take the world inside your hand
And of your dreams take hold
This place, it lies within your mind
Reflection is the key
Shape your world and things behind
The portal to the sea
The passport is within each one
Who knows this fascination
Enter through the gaping door
And spark your imagination
Posted by Glen C on September 25, 2019
Yost! an etymology

Today I was listening to "Wild Beasts'" album "Smother" which was something Chris and I were into, but his memory was more subconscious. I started thinking about my past SF city life and how Chris was my partner in crime to see strange indy modern noir movies at the SF Embarcadero theater at odd hours.

We always seemed to share the same view of "two regular guys" being juxtaposed into a strange place, and being observers of it's odd particularities.

On one particular occasion we were getting tickets for a movie, and getting our popcorn situation sorted. On the table, Chris noticed and pointed out they had "nutritional yeast" in a small shaker. I think my response was "....SF man..." and we laughed.

It wasn't a few days layer I'd see Chris at work and hear him randomly start to say "yeeeaast" in his distinct voice. And it wasn't long after that it became the new greeting in our chat dialogs. "Yeast!" ie. "what's up!"

Those who know him probably remember him doing things like this...I loved it...I was just telling my wife this story, and it occurred to me that this is how we'd know it's "really him" should we ever discover we're in some sci-fi matrix or something. Chris gave us tokens to know him uniquely, that once heard, your whole friendship could quickly be re-booted with a smile.

It wasn't long until "Yeast" became a mis-typed "Yost!" and it stuck! I know he used the term in other contexts so if you've ever heard it you can thank the person who thought serving "nutritional yeast" with popcorn at the Embarcadero was a good idea.

Miss you brother!

Posted by Alison V on September 20, 2019
Hi, Chris.

It's your friend, Carpet. Remember that name? Bostjian named me that for my "lesbian haircut" (I had long hair, what was he on about?) and you kept it as my nickname. Oh, how we laughed. You also called me "Kitty Kisser" since I told you how I love my cats and kiss their little heads. That stuck, too. So, Carpet KK is here, thinking about you and missing you.

Happy birthday, love. I will raise a glass to you tonight. 

Last we chatted (via Twitter!) We spoke about best platforms for podcasts, and I was so happy to see your writing was published. So proud of all you've achieved. 

We met in grad school and I loved you since I met you. I felt instantly "at home" with you. You're fun, smart, and so loveable and adorable. We talked about Motorola Razor phones, fandom, panopticons, Lacan, Marshall McLuhan, audio, oh! And you edited that wedding video I shot for a first client. I think I paid you more than I earned on that, since editing takes a while. And, you're worth it. <3 It turned out so well! 

Remember the time we went to correct papers as Michelle's GA's? It was at her house. Good times. Grading papers was hard! We shared so much that year.

Chris, you were so good at everything you did. You're one of the special renaissance men who just added so much value to every group project, with humor and grace. You are also so kind. So kind. So gentle. So right about things we would discuss in grad school. Spot on.

I miss you lots and wish I could bury my face in a big bear hug with you right now. There's a Chris sized hole in my heart. Love you. 
Posted by Jacquelyn Stone on September 20, 2019
I've added some fun pictures from this date last year - September 20, 2018 - Chris's birthday. Two of his sisters and two of his nieces drove to Snowy Range in Wyoming and sent him pictures. We were hoping he could join us, but he couldn't work it out with his schedule. He visited this mountain range often as a very young boy and had hoped to get back up there. He's on my mind today - the day of his birth - the day the world became a better place.
Posted by Annette Lancial on August 18, 2019
Springsteen wrote these words for a friend but they could be about Chris....he was one of a kind.

Well they built the Titanic to be one of a kind, but many ships have ruled the seas
They built the Eiffel Tower to stand alone, but they could build another if they please
Taj Mahal, the pyramids of Egypt, are unique I suppose
But when they built you, brother, they broke the mold

Now the world is filled with many wonders under the passing sun
And sometimes something comes along and you know it's for sure the only one
The Mona Lisa, the David, the Sistine Chapel, Jesus, Mary, and Joe
And when they built you, brother, they broke the mold

When they built you, brother, they turned dust into gold
When they built you, brother, they broke the mold

They say you can't take it with you, but I think that they're wrong
'Cause all I know is I woke up this morning, and something big was gone
Gone into that dark ether where you're still young and hard and cold
Just like when they built you, brother, they broke the mold

Now your death is upon us and we'll return your ashes to the earth
And I know you'll take comfort in knowing you've been roundly blessed and cursed
But love is a power greater than death, just like the songs and stories told
And when she built you, brother, she broke the mold

That attitude's a power stronger than death, alive and burning her stone cold
When they built you, brother

Posted by Glen C on August 14, 2019
I had the opportunity to meet and work with Chris in 1996 during the opening of Pacific Bell Internet Services. We both ended up on the Graveyard shift working in downtown San Francisco. I had recently uprooted and moved to SF from LA for the job and knew nobody. Chris was one of the first people I became friends with outside of work.

We hit it off instantly when I asked him why there was a picture of a dead girl as his desktop screen. He informed me that it was Laura Palmer, from Twin Peaks. He asked if I knew of David Lynch... I had no clue. One of my fondest memories was seeing Lost Highway with Chris on the day it came out...we sat in the front row and I became a Lynch fan for life. But even better than that was having Chris to share this with. When he realized I had never seen Twin Peaks, strange envelopes of his personal VHS tapes appeared on my work chair. Thank you, Chris. Binging on Twin Peaks was my first series binge and it changed the game for me. It still is my fondest memory of living life in "the city" in my 20's. We would see Lynch films whenever possible and most recently got to enjoy Twin Peaks Returns. A highlight for me was getting to see Eraserhead (his favorite) with him in Berkely.

It turned out we both had music as a significant part of our past lives before getting into tech. It wasn't long after we figured this out that we secured a rehearsal studio in Daly City. We only used it once but kept it for several years. It became known as "the space", it came to represent our first inside joke (of many), it basically meant procrastination... the thing we keep meaning to get to. It would become the hallmark of many endeavors including a stop motion barbie satire, a membership in the SF film institute (so we could use their editing equipment), and most recently a full 10 song album under the name "Meanwhile in California" for which he wrote and recorded each song.

Chris, for me, was a soul-mate of strange and unusual. We were able to connect on so many specific interests. We loved weird German metal bands like "Die Krupps" and would always share music with each other. We would spontaneously suggest doing covers of obscure 80's songs. We got to see Gang-of-Four and the Descendants play in SF! I wouldn't have done that without him. He would make midi covers of crazy punk tunes and painstakingly program the drums to every nuance for which I could appreciate and reciprocate the effort.

We always stayed in touch throughout our different careers and life changes over 20 years. He was the friend I was always genuinely glad to reconnect with. Seeing Chris succeed, acquire a home, find and fall in love with his dog made my heart soar.

We made some memorable trips together. My first trip to Yosemite and a trip to Mono Lake and the ghost town Bodie were highlights. In 2018 we went to NAMM in LA (a thing we kept saying we wanted to do and finally did). Hanging out with Chris in LA, driving around Echo Park while he told me about "the Shield", quoting lines from Aliens!, hitting the Dresden, meeting up with his colleagues for dinner were definitely the highlights of the trip. I was stoked to learn of his writing accomplishments and world journeys with others here. I'm glad you all knew him and I'm honored to share that uniqueness with you.

In early 2019 Chris found a muse, he was producing 1 song per month! He would eagerly share them with me and I was blown away. I encouraged him to keep going...honor the muse..get the songs refined as we go. He ended up with 10 usable songs (including interludes) which I helped him get to demo quality and we even had professional drums recorded for two of them.

We were in contact daily regarding the album on Slack. Suddenly he went quiet, too quiet....

I still miss you, man, I'm glad you got those songs out there. I'm humbled and honored I could help bring them to the world.

The song demos are here:

When I need a Chris connection I listen to this song and I highly recommend it:

Chris, your wholeness leaves a massive hole in our hearts, but maybe someday, we're gonna be okay.

When I can get my head around it, I'm hoping to return to his music. The goal is to have a professional engineer I know (who works at a studio in Oakland) finalize a couple of the finished tracks. I will then press these to vinyl in his honor. He was stoked at the idea of doing a bonafide "record". I want to do that for him.
Posted by Walter Jon Williams on July 21, 2019
This is Walter Jon Williams, founder of the Taos Toolbox workshop. I thought I'd give public thanks to Chris' generous friends for their contribution to the Chris Cornell Scholarship Fund. The money will be available for applicants to the 2020 workshop.  Sometimes just a few hundred makes the difference between attending and not attending, so I wanted everyone to know that the contributions will truly help new writers in developing their careers.
Posted by Snuggie ToYou on July 21, 2019
Chris was my best friend in high school. I am devastated to learn that he's gone. I can't believe it. Full of fun, snark and wit and one of the smartest kids I knew. 
BW, I've needed you more times that you knew. Eternal love and respect to you. Rest easy and love forever, BJ.
Posted by Cory Nabors on July 9, 2019
Chris was a big fan of video games. We first met nearly 20 years ago in EverQuest and hit it off immediately. We had the same taste in fiction and games. We had similar senses of humor. Over the years, the games that we played together changed but we remained good friends and chatted almost daily. We used to say that we could play solitaire together and still have a good time.

We never met in person. We'd planned to correct that in Mexico later this year for our friend Mike's wedding. We'd been making plans for silly shirts and hats to wear while we were there. There will be a somber note to the trip that will be hard to shake. It will be hard not to think: 'Chris should be here too.'

Since his passing, it's hit me over and over... I still want to send him a funny news article that I just read or get his opinion on something or trade puns with him or just reminisce old stories that would always make us laugh.

I'm grateful to have gotten the chance to have Chris for a friend and will miss him terribly.
Posted by Elijah Lovejoy on July 9, 2019
Each moment is immutable, transcendent, mundane, fleeting. Sometimes the now overwhelms, the awesome and terrible pasts and futures ebb. Other times it is as if we are in a museum or mausoleum, or so lost in possible futures that we forget our hands on a keyboard, the crows arguing in the oak trees outside, the tides of time and life.
A codebase is like a over-edited book, half-legible, equally confusing to the programer and the computer. An old half-built house where the finished table sits on a dirt floor that we imagine as tile but have not yet built. Woe is me, to walk these halls without you. Lucky me, to still see you everywhere.
Dan helped me organize some thoughts on our blog:
Posted by Divya B on July 8, 2019
Chris became my friend at Paradise Lost. We spent time together at a couple of WorldCons, and I last saw him NebulaCon in May, 2019. In addition to being a friend, Chris invited me to be part of the Unreliable Narrators podcast, and he was a wonderful voice for the listeners of the Escape Pod podcast. Barely a week before his passing, we'd been emailing each other about a two-part story narration he was going to do for Escape Pod. I still feel the pang of Chris's loss every time I open up my schedule.
In addition to being a talented writer, podcaster, and narrator, Chris was always gentle, kind, and funny. I am so very sorry that he's gone.
Posted by Linda Shepperd on July 8, 2019
I miss his sweetness
his kindness
his laughter
his thoughtfulness
his quick wit and humor
his sense of adventure
his appreciation of life
his creative nature
his acceptance and open mind
his sensitivity
his hugs
his beautiful face
his love.

The best human I will ever know.

It's been wonderful to hear from so many who loved and appreciated our Chris. I'm so glad I got to meet some of you.
Posted by Susan Iwamoto on July 4, 2019
Christopher came to work in my department at an educational teaching organization in the South Bay back in 1989. We knew him when he was around 29 years old – over 20 years ago, but it seems like yesterday. That’s the thing about memories, so here are a few more.

Christopher helped my department set up week-long, hands-on summer math workshops for elementary teachers around the country. He was confident in talking with the math instructors, and they enjoyed talking with him. Christopher was a kind and gentle person who helped create a positive atmosphere with those around him. He was extremely bright and creative and had a clever way with words both oral and written. He was definitely a strong team member who worked diligently on any project.
One of his talents was his use of imagination. Once when I was leaving to teach a math workshop in Mississippi, he encouraged me to drive 100 miles north to Memphis to visit Graceland just in case Elvis was still alive, which I did. Somewhere he found this old paperback book purportedly analyzing whether or not Elvis was still alive and promised to read it and do a book report on it by the time I returned, which he did in Christopher fashion.

Another time when there was a news report about the authenticity of the Shroud of Turin, I ended up getting my own personal shroud designed by Christopher on my birthday. He loved Egyptian mythology and knew a lot about the various gods and goddesses, especially Ra. He loved music and some of us went to see him perform. Christopher wasn’t one to get up in your face or raise his voice. He had a quizzical way of just saying “really?” Then we would all burst out laughing.

The last time I heard his voice was when Lorena, another former colleague who moved to Florida, picked him up at the port in Fort Lauderdale after a writers cruise and drove him to the airport to fly back to the Bay Area. They were both laughing and talking about old times and surprised me with a phone call. Christopher told me how wonderful the cruise had been for encouraging up and coming writers and meeting potential publishers. I'm so grateful that I was able to listen to his podcasts and hear his voice and listen to his music. It made me smile.

His last message was an email when he was visiting Estonia and on his way to Finland. I was so happy that he was living his dream. I am especially grateful that those of us who worked with him were able to be part of his journey. Christopher, we miss you. You will be a part of our lives forever. Really!
Posted by Lauren Teffeau on July 3, 2019
I was shocked and saddened to hear of Chris's death. For many years, we have shared our writing with one another, and it was so gratifying to see his command of craft get better and better with each novel. I was eagerly awaiting his next project, and I'm devastated that I will not see it. More, that the publishing community will not see it. He is gone too soon. His humor and view of the world, his steady support and good-naturedness, are a huge loss for all of us. He will be missed.
Posted by Kyoohee Lee on July 3, 2019
I am so sorry for all of your loss and wish you our deepest condolences. Having lost family and friends so close to my heart, I understand the deep pain and the stinging scar that can be left behind.
I have gained so much comfort reading Ecclesiastes 9:5, where it says "the dead know nothing at all". I am so glad to know my family and friends are not in a state of suffering and I look forward to seeing them when "there is going to be a resurrection" (Acts 24:15)!
Posted by Fran Wilde on July 1, 2019
Chris, in addition to being a wonderful person to talk to at conventions and workshops, was an excellent podcaster and interviewer. His professionalism and joy about what he was doing showed through on the interviews he did with me -- it was more sitting down to talk with a friend than an interview, really -- and his questions were always generous and lovely.
Chris was one of those good people who always reached out. He did me a great kindness once that was above and beyond. I'm going to miss him a lot.
Posted by Michelle W on June 30, 2019
Chris was my brilliant student, and after that my uber-outstanding Teaching Assistant. Chris did a lot of teaching, Not necessarily in the classroom, in our conversations. He was a teacher, an explorer, a very wise man. I have a long list of various and sundry things I learned from him and continue to use now. I followed his work and we stayed in touch since he graduated; this quieted down the last couple of years.I have more to share, but I just heard about his passing so I need some time right now.
Posted by John Connelly on June 30, 2019
Chris was my most consistent roommate during college. He was the most creative person I've ever known. He could create a tune in minutes on a guitar, and was instrumental (literally!) in bringing together our first garage band, "Bloody Mary". I learned a lot about playing bass from him, and was constantly amazed and intrigued by (and somewhat envious of!) his immense creativity.
Chris radically influenced my music choices. He introduced me to bands like The Dead Kennedys, Metallica, Joan Armatrading, Lene Lovich, Accept, and countless others. I am forever grateful for it.
More than anything though, Chris was a down-to-earth, caring person. He will be missed by me as well as many others whose lives he touched.
Posted by Karen Birkedahl Rylander on June 30, 2019
We met at a writers workshop in 2015 and bonded sharing stories of growing up in Utah. We became fast friends and hung out whenever our paths crossed. I can be a little shy, but could always be myself around Chris. He was a joy to be around--thoughtful and funny and kind. He was interested in a lot of things and always had intelligent things to say. He was a great friend. I can't believe he's gone.
Posted by Robert Groves on June 30, 2019
I met Chris in the 9th grade in 1981 in Rock Springs, WY. We became instant friends. He introduced me to music, books, authors, artists, things that I’d never heard or seen before growing up in an isolated WY town. His taste in those things was impeccable. He was super imaginative, creative, witty, an excellent writer. He could draw, he introduced me to weird David Lynch films and we’d go see indie films at theaters around the Bay Area. He helped me culturally and opened my eyes to many things. He was super funny, he’d get you laughing so hard. In 2015 the original 4 (Chris, me, John Connelly and Gregg Lahti) did a 30th Anniversary celebration in Vegas of being friends although it was 34 for Chris and me. He came up once to Portland in 2017 and I met him and showed him things around town. That’s the last time I saw him. He will be forever missed!
Posted by Kevin Davison on June 29, 2019
Chris was delightful to work with at SendMe Mobile. We kept in touch for a few years and now I learn of our loss. My best to family and friends. Chris will be missed.
Posted by Tammy Puthoff on June 29, 2019
Chris and I worked together in the early 90s and became instant friends. As I look at pictures from long ago, I smile at the good times and how lucky I was to have that moment in time with him. I will forever remember his smile, his crazy antics and his gentle soul. He made a mark in my heart that will be there always. Miss you my friend.
Posted by Sheila Hartney on June 29, 2019
I was at the Taos Toolbox with Chris, and he was a joy. I loved his writing. He gave helpful feedback. We were only in touch a handful of times after, and I'm so sorry that I didn't keep up with him more regularly. Even so, I find I am missing him a great deal.
Posted by Alice Davis on June 29, 2019
As I have sat here thinking of Chris, and trying to decide what to write. One of my biggest feelings is gratitude. I am grateful for Chris being a good son to my Grandmother and good brother to my Mom. It meant more to me than he could ever know. I am grateful for all the gifts he gave us- his written words, his music, his humor. I'm grateful for all the wonderful memories. When I think back at my favorite times from my times with him we're definitely some of the best.
Thank you Chris for just being you, I love you and miss you.
Posted by Chris Bauer on June 29, 2019
I met Chris years ago at a writing retreat. His wit and warmth made him an easy person to like and I was honored to count him as a friend. Over the years we'd meet up at various events or hang out when I traveled to the Bay area. Always encouraging other writers, he was the first to offer help or volunteer to wade through a first draft. I'll think of him often and he will be missed.
Posted by Mel Melcer on June 29, 2019
I met Chris at a writers' workshop where I got to read and admire his writing. He was a talented writer and a lovely, caring person. I enjoyed spending time with him, his warm presence and his friendship. Gone much, much too soon.
Posted by Annette Lancial on June 28, 2019
Chris was many things to many people. To me, he was a much beloved little brother, sent to us when we were all close to or already teenagers. He was a true joy to us. His other two sisters and I doted on him and he endured us with gentle tolerance and MANY hugs. He traveled many miles to see us and to spend time with us. In spite of all he was involved in, he stayed in touch, he called. When I was in the hospital, he called every day. He loved me and he told me so. That is a precious gift.
Posted by Walter Jon Williams on June 28, 2019
I encountered Chris when he was my student at the Taos Toolbox Workshop. He was not only a talented writer, but a dedicated, kind, big-hearted man who gave his best to the workshop, and worked with other participants to improve their work. He will be missed.
Posted by Skylar Laud on June 28, 2019
My uncle Chris was an amazing man and one of my greatest regrets is that I did not get to spend enough time with him in person. I am, however, forever thankful that I grew up in the era of technology because it offered me a way to read his stories, hear his voice, and experience everything he had to offer to the world. He was always there to lend me a witty retweet when I was low and gave me numerous critiques on my art and writing that helped shape me into the creative mind that I am now and those are lessons I will take with me as I carry on his standing tradition of being the nerdiest person in the room. I can only hope to be half as kind, compassionate, and funny, too. We lost a unique and amazing soul and we'll miss him dearly. Blessed be.
Posted by Catherine SchaffStump on June 28, 2019
Chris was one of my best friends. I miss him terribly. It is like the sun has stopped shining. I am so glad I met him, and will always feel his loss.
Posted by Effie Seiberg on June 28, 2019
Chris was a big ball of warmth and humor, lighting up any space he was in with his gentle wit and kind words. He is missed.
Posted by Jacquelyn Stone on June 28, 2019
We extend special thanks to the following people who helped his family during the days immediately following his death: Debbie who rescued his dog from his house; Carole who picked us up at the airport, drove us all over Oakland & beyond, helped us clean & pack up his house, fed us and gave us a place to sleep when we arrived & left; Corina for giving his dog a home; and Elijah & Glen who came by his house to share hugs & stories and helped to access his computers and sort through his valuables.
Descriptions we have received from some of his friends include: wonderful, gentle, contagious laugh; loving and gracious heart; wonderful attitude toward life; overflowing with kindness and gentle humor; he leaves a hole in our world that nothing can fill.

Leave a Tribute

Recent Tributes
Posted by Alison V on June 12, 2020
Chris - its been a weird year. You just wouldn't believe it if I could time travel back and tell you about the current state of events. I wish I could hear your voice and your thoughts. You'll be proud to know I have started a "Writing Your Way Home" writing group for is a timed writing group, based upon lyrics or poems . I deliver "jump off lines" to help get people going. The we write, non stop for 10 minutes. We then share. No cross talk, judgement, correction. It's been transformative work, and very healing. I think of you every time I begin a 90 minute class. I hope you'd be proud. I'm also live streaming productions from my home - which you wouldn't believe. My home studio is sweet and I work with friends from school in Germany. The circle closes. I am hugging you from afar. Hope you can feel it. <3. Love you.
Posted by Walter Jon Williams on June 11, 2020
I would like to let everyone know that the Chris Cornell Scholarship to the Taos Toolbox writers workshop was awarded this year to new student Thea Boodhoo. 

Your generosity last year enabled a participant who otherwise couldn't have afforded to attend the opportunity to fully participate. Thank you all.

Walter Jon Williams
Posted by Debbie Goelz on June 10, 2020
I cannot believe a year has gone by since we lost Chris. I miss his bright spirit, quick wit, intelligence, and kindness every day. The world is poorer without him. Love you, Chris!
his Life

A special brother

Chris was the youngest sibling in our family – our “caboose”. When he was very small, he often told us “I’m full of love” – and he truly was. He was adored by his older brothers and sisters. He could have easily been a spoiled brat with so many siblings who adored him. Instead, he grew up to be a very caring, accepting, open minded, totally delightful person. When we talked of how much he meant to us and how special we thought he was, he always wanted to change the subject and often rolled his eyes. We will miss his outlook on life, his vision, creativity, wit and humor. He would have been humbled by this tribute. He certainly left us with an example to follow.

He was a senior web designer for Ondema, Inc. Chris held an M.A. in Radio and Television from San Francisco State University where he was awarded the Stuart M. Hyde Award for Writing in Media. He was a graduate of the Taos Toolbox and Viable Paradise writing workshops and belonged to the Left Coast Writers and Codex professional organizations. He was also a writer and musician. He wrote in a wide variety of genres including science fiction, humor and historical fantasy. He was the producer and co-host of the Unreliable Narrators podcast about genre fiction and pop culture. He and friend, George, started Shohola Press (an independent publishing company). He contributed background material and short fiction to game worlds and also composed music for online shows such as Unreliable Narrators, Terror Troop and the E’ville audio drama. He enjoyed a wide variety of music. One of his favorite musicians was Joan Armatrading (she's singing in the background).  He and friend, Glen, were working on an album at the time of his passing.  

His parents were James A. and Nadine Cornell. He is survived by sisters Linda Shepperd (Laporte, CO), Jackie Stone & husband Mike (Cheyenne, WY), and Annette Lancial & husband Tom (Rock Island, IL); brothers Scott Cornell (Livermore, CO) and Brett Cornell & wife Colleen (Corinth, TX), as well as numerous nieces and nephews. He was preceded in death by his parents, a brother, Tim and a sister, Phyllis.

Chris spent most of his adult life in the bay area of California. His ashes were spread at the base of an oak tree overlooking a valley in California.

Recent stories

My Baby Brother

Shared by Jacquelyn Stone on July 11, 2019

Chris came into my life when I was 16 years old.  This sweet baby brother joined our family when most of his siblings were teenagers.  I remember the first time I saw him.  That was back when newborn babies were kept in glassed-in areas of the hospital & visitors had to stand outside the glass & look in.  I knew instantly which baby was my brother - he was the most beautiful baby I had ever seen.  He was a special gift - almost like a son to me.  I watched him as he grew and learned how to talk, walk, read.  It was delightful to watch him grow into the fine human being he turned out to be.  So brilliant.  So kind.  So talented.  So accepting.  So loving.  It's been wonderful reading all of the posts from friends & coworkers - hearing about a side of his life that was different from his family.  It seems his family isn't alone in our love for him, our appreciation of him and our awe at his brilliance.  I will miss him always and am so honored to be able to say he was my brother. 

Shared by Catherine SchaffStump on June 30, 2019

Chris came into my life at Viable Paradise 2009, and you know, he was a guy I knew. It wasn't until he came back into my life about 5 years later that we became close. 

While we were both attending Paradise Lost, a writing retreat in San Antonio, that's when we started to bond. I was SO SICK. Like an idiot, I decided to travel with a cold and turned it into bronchitis. Chris took really good care of me, making sure I made it to the drugstore, taking the time to walk with me as I lagged behind the group. He was the quintessential good guy. 

He, George Galuschak, and I started hanging out online once a week, to talk about our writing projects. Chris and I went with Debbie Goelz to the San Francisco Writers conference to pitch agents, and again to the Writer's Digest conference with George and Miranda Suri. On the New York trip, we hooked up with Chia Evers again, and shortly after that, The Unreliable Narrators podcast started, because we wanted to put something positive out into the world. We did, with interviews Chris edited and produced. We also recorded E'ville, the radio show, together.

Chris was a supportive writing friend. He read all my manuscripts and returned insightful credits. Heck, when my first Klaereon book came out, he made me a monster truck ad for it, because it was a joke, I said I'd love to hear it, and he did it. 

It was the great pleasure of my life to attend writing conferences with Chris. Together, we took the Writing Excuses cruise of Europe, Chris was one of the regulars at our Icon workshop, and we journeyed to Vancouver to the Surrey International Writers Conference. We went to a couple of World Cons together. 

At one of those World Cons in Kansas City, Chris and I kept ending up in pocket dimensions. I went into a space where I could see the convention floor, but couldn't get to it, because I was in the off limits space of the convention center. Chris ended up in an abandoned hotel lobby, because one of the downtown hotels had bought a competitor and hadn't remodeled the space yet. I jumped off a tram, but in an alternate timeline, there was no door for Chris, and he moved on down the road to the next stop and circled back to my dimension. 

If only I had realized the other dimension was still greedy for him, I would have said something. I miss you, my friend. I miss you so much.

"Oh, We'll Get There."

Shared by John Connelly on June 30, 2019

I have dozens of stories about Chris, but my favorite one is when Chris was driving Robert and me down the freeway in Phoenix, maybe 1987. I don't remember where we were going, but I do remeber Robert being anxious to get there (Robert was always.... anxious). 

As our offramp approached ... and then went right by as Chris missed it, Robert was beside himself. "CHRIS! YOU JUST MISSED THE EXIT!!!"

Chris just camly replied: "Oh, we'll get there."

That one phrase really stuck with me, and to this day my wife and I use it to remind ourselves that life doesn't have to be so rigid and timetabled and uptight. When we're stuck in traffic, or taking the "wrong" turn, or sometimes just being out for a drive, the phrase usually comes out: "Oh, we'll get there."

Thanks Chris.