Iain M. Banks has announced that he has been diagnosed with late-stage gall bladder cancer and states that he is unlikely to live for more than a year. Originally diagnosed with jaundice, later tests revealed the extent of his illness. Banks has married his long-time companion Adele and has announced the cancellation of all future engagements. The author of The Wasp Factory, Feersum Endjinn, and the Culture series, Banks has been announced as the Guest of Honor for the 2014 Worldcon in London. Banks and Loncon have stated that his attendance is unlikely at the convention.
Science fiction author Steven Utley has lapsed into a coma. Utley was recently diagnosed with stage four cancer and a lesion on his brain. Utley, whose short fiction has been collected in five volumes, is one of the original members of the Turkey City writing group.
Two kickstarters to benefit Jay Lake, one to help pay the production costs to finish the documentary Lakeside, the other to pay the cost to sequence Lake’s geneome for further study, met with such great success, the latter raising $10,000 in less than five hours, that Paypal froze Lake’s account due to the sudden influx of donations. Due to a Twitter campaign, Paypal quickly rectified the situation and made arrangements to donate to the Kickstarters as well. Lake has been battling cancer since he was first diagnosed in 2008.
Jim C. Hines will raise money in support of research into Aicardi Syndrome by doing follow-up poses based on book covers. If Hines raises more than $1,000, John Scalzi will do a pose with him as well (and a second if the $2,500 goal is met). Aicardi Syndrome causes brain malformation, visual problems, seizures, developmental delays, and other medical complications. Most research puts the life expectancy for people with Aicardi between 8 and 16 years. Hines’s fund-raising effort will run through the end of 2012.
Author Brad Sinor suffered a minor stroke on August 20. According to his wife, he is doing well and can walk, but not speak. She asks that people not inundate them with calls or e-mails.
Author Parke Godwin, who wrote the World Fantasy Award winning novella “The Fire When It Comes” as well as series about Robin Hood and King Arthur, has been moved to a medical facility where he can receive round-the-clock supervision. His short- and long-term memory are not adequate for him to hold conversations, but the doctors are hoping that he may improve if they can find the right medicines.
Neil Clarke, editor of Clarkesworld has announced that he suffered an heart attack at Readercon and is currently in the hospital waiting to hear his prognosis.
Minneapolis fan and author Jim Young has been admitted to hospital and diagnosed with a malignant brain tumor. Young entered hospital on June 5 and underwent emergency surgery. According to his doctors, he is currently in a life threatening situation. Young wrote the novels The Face of the Deep and Armed Memory, as well as an handful of short stories.
Author, fan, and photographer Jay Kay Klein has entered hospice care. Klein is a long-time fan whose photographs of science fiction authors, artists, and fans, have been widely seen. Klein has been suffering from terminal oesophageal cancer and recently donated his collection of photos to the Eaton Collection.