Wednesday, December 12, 2007

Sad News from Terry Pratchett

I just saw some terribly sad news about Discworld author, Terry Pratchett. He announced on his illustrator's website that he has early onset Alzheimer's disease. The man is only 59 years old...what a tragedy for him and his family and fans. This is part of what the Yahoo News coverage had to say:

In a brief note to fans entitled "An Embuggerance," Pratchett, 59, said he was taking the news "fairly philosophically" and "possibly with a mild optimism."

"I would have liked to keep this one quiet for a little while, but because of upcoming conventions and of course the need to keep my publishers informed, it seems to me unfair to withhold the news," he wrote on the Web site of Paul Kidby, who has illustrated many of his books.
Pratchett said he would continue completing "Nation" and that he had already begun working on "Unseen Academicals" — another writing project.

"Frankly, I would prefer it if people kept things cheerful, because I think there's time for at least a few more books yet :o)" he wrote in his message. "I know it's a very human thing to say 'Is there anything I can do,' but in this case I would only entertain offers from very high-end experts in brain chemistry."
Pratchett sounds like a very brave man and I pray that some new research development comes along in time to save him from this horrible disease.


  1. How sad!! This is actually one of my worst fears. I already find I forget things (but I think that is mostly a matter of not paying closer attention). Perhaps since they have caught it early, they can do something for it?

  2. Oh, that's tragic. Poor man. His poor fans. I loved his (and Neil Gaiman's) Good Omens - I keep meaning to pick up his Discworld series.

  3. It's one of my worst fears, too, Danielle. I watched my wife's grandmother go through this and it was heartbreaking, to say the least.

    I find it especially sad to see someone this young, a person who makes his living from his thoughts, end up with this terrible disease.

  4. I've not read the series either, Carrie, because I don't read much from that genre anymore but I've heard good things about it.

  5. I'm not much of a fan of his writing, but I hope it goes without saying, I still find this very sad. Not that it would be good for anyone, but for a writer it seems doubly tragic.

  6. Oh, damn. I've watched this disease in action before and am currently watching my father deteriorate. I hope Pratchett does manage "a few more books" and pray that research comes up with something soon. I'm offering a prayer for Pratchett and his family.

  7. It does seem doubly tragic, at that, doesn't it, John? And it scares the hell out of me when I see someone who has always made his living from his thoughts have to face this. I know, really, that it's no worse for any other person to get this, but for some reason it just kills me when I hear of a writer facing this.

    Shades of Iris Murdoch...

  8. I've seen it up close and personal a couple of times myself, Jenclair, and I know how difficult it is to watch someone you love go through this. My prayers are with you and your father.