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View Full Version : Terry Pratchett announces rare early-onset Alzheimer's.


Ampersand
12-12-07, 18:12
Terry's statement (http://www.pjsmprints.com/news/index.html).

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. I have been diagnosed with a very rare form of early
onset Alzheimer's, which lay behind this year's phantom "stroke".

We are taking it fairly philosophically down here and possibly with a mild optimism. For now work is continuing on the completion of Nation and the basic notes are already being laid down for Unseen Academicals. All other things being equal, I expect to meet most current and, as far as possible, future commitments but will discuss things with the various organisers. Frankly, I would prefer it if people kept things cheerful, because I think there's time for at least a few more books yet.
One of my favourite authors, if not my favourite, and such a creative genius. I feel a bit like crying, to be honest.

Kamrusepas
12-12-07, 18:14
Oh god no :yik: :(

Ampersand
12-12-07, 18:15
I can't believe it either. I just hope he sticks around for a good while yet. :(

Reggie
12-12-07, 18:16
How very sad. I've never read his books but its obvious the man has a gift for imagination and writing and has brought much pleasure to people all over the world. I do intend to check out one of his books at some point...
Really is very very sad though :(

danitiwa
12-12-07, 19:00
I'm sorry, even though I haven't read his books, it's sad to hear. Especially for a writer, it must be hard.

Legend 4ever
12-12-07, 19:18
I am sorry for him. But his books are really boring, vague and just not interesting.

Atlantean-Squid
12-12-07, 19:21
I am sorry for him. But his books are really boring, vague and just not interesting.

With a name like "Legend 4ever" your lack of taste is unsurprising.

Ada the Mental
12-12-07, 19:21
:yik: :yik: :yik:
HELL NO!

Ampersand
12-12-07, 19:23
I am sorry for him. But his books are really boring, vague and just not interesting.

Each to their own. He's the best living fantasy author over here, imho. (Rowling doesn't count.)

Legend 4ever
12-12-07, 19:24
With a name like "Legend 4ever" your lack of taste is unsurprising.

Pardon me for being so rude in expressing my opinion. :whi:

Yes, his books are shallow, not intelligent and over-commercialized. He has freaking 50 books about the same thing.

Ampersand
12-12-07, 19:28
I don't think you can call Terry's books shallow if you've read them properly. I can't, anyway, but I'm biased. His first few might have been all-out fantasy parody, but the series changed a lot since to deal with some very relevant themes. His characterization has been marvellous too, in the figure of Sam Vimes in particular.

He's a very intelligent man, at the top of my list next to Douglas Adams. I think it's all down to appreciation of his humour.

(And you can't really call Terry over-commercialized when there's Rowling right over there.)

danitiwa
12-12-07, 19:29
Pardon me for being so rude in expressing my opinion. :whi:

Yes, his books are shallow, not intelligent and over-commercialized. He has freaking 50 books about the same thing.

I could say the same about Lindsay Lohan tbh. :p (Don't kill me for saying that.)

Can anyone say what his books are about? They're philosophical or something?

Reggie
12-12-07, 19:32
Pardon me for being so rude in expressing my opinion. :whi:

Yes, his books are shallow, not intelligent and over-commercialized. He has freaking 50 books about the same thing.

Bottom line is, your opinion comes across as rather tasteless given the context.

Ampersand
12-12-07, 19:32
Can anyone say what his books are about? They're philosophical or something?

I suppose you could call them a little philosophical, but I consider them satire, a humorous reflection of real life (and just plain funny fantasy).

Legend 4ever
12-12-07, 19:36
I don't think you can call Terry's books shallow if you've read them properly. I can't, anyway, but I'm biased. His first few might have been all-out fantasy parody, but the series changed a lot since to deal with some very relevant themes. His characterization has been marvellous too, in the figure of Sam Vimes in particular.

He's a very intelligent man, at the top of my list next to Douglas Adams. I think it's all down to appreciation of his humour.

(And you can't really call Terry over-commercialized when there's Rowling right over there.)
Well, he didn't keep me interested enough to read more than Wyrd Sisters and Witches Abroad. Those books were really boring to me and quite hard to understand, which only says about his ability. I mean, reading Leo Tolstoy's Anna Karenina was really enjoyable to me and I loved the book, which has 800 pages and I found every Pratchett's 300-page-book really hard to read and not really interesting.

Now Tolstoy is philosophy.

Ampersand
12-12-07, 19:45
If you want to go on about page counts, I could say I've read all 1,200+ pages of Les Miserables and The Count of Monte Cristo, but that doesn't make me enjoy Tolstoy's work any more.

But I think by now we've established that one man's **** is another man's gold. Excuse me if I'm sounding sharp. As you might've gathered I'm not exactly at my happiest.

jarhead
12-12-07, 19:46
Although I've never read any of his books, and dont particularly like the genre , its terrible news to hear about, and I wish him the best of luck in writing more books

Legend 4ever
12-12-07, 19:49
I could say the same about Lindsay Lohan tbh. :p (Don't kill me for saying that.)
That was really mature. How do you know if you like good and proper things in your life? Maybe you are wrong.
If you want to go on about page counts, I could say I've read all 1,200+ pages of Les Miserables and The Count of Monte Cristo, but that doesn't make me enjoy Tolstoy's work any more.
But I think by now we've established that one man's **** is another man's gold. Excuse me if I'm sounding sharp. As you might've gathered I'm not exactly at my happiest.
I was just naming the page count because it is kind of impossible for a three times smaller book to be a million times more vague and boring, yet Terry succeeded.

danitiwa
12-12-07, 20:01
That was really mature. How do you know if you like good and proper things in your life? Maybe you are wrong.

Did I ever say that I am mature? :p

And that was my opinion. I wasn't ticked about yours, so I don't see why mine should get you so worked up.

And you're going into proper things, which I never even said anything about.

I wouldn't diss Terry in this thread, since people are Grieving, and they're already in a pretty rotten mood. I wouldn't come in and just make them more ****ed.

Samsdad
12-12-07, 20:03
That was really mature. How do you know if you like good and proper things in your life? Maybe you are wrong.

I was just naming the page count because it is kind of impossible for a three times smaller book to be a million times more vague and boring, yet Terry succeeded.

This is a thread about a man who is going to experience something that is going to be very tragic. This is a man that many love and respect. No one is interested in your psuedo-intellectual opinions nor is anyone impressed with your "I read Tolstoy". This is a time to keep your opinion to yourself if you have any decency about you.

Atlantean-Squid
12-12-07, 20:22
"Yes, his books are shallow, not intelligent and over-commercialized. He has freaking 50 books about the same thing."

lol

Kamrusepas
12-12-07, 20:22
This is a thread about a man who is going to experience something that is going to be very tragic. This is a man that many love and respect. No one is interested in your psuedo-intellectual opinions nor is anyone impressed with your "I read Tolstoy". This is a time to keep your opinion to yourself if you have any decency about you.

Fully agreed. Legend 4ever, we have just learned that one of our favorite authors is suffering from a horrible disease, and you have to come make it worse like this? What possible reason could there be for you to try and make us feel even worse? Other than pure malevolence? :confused:

Gloriosa
12-12-07, 20:29
I am saddened at this news. Terry Pratchett is one of my favourite authors, and illnesses like this are horrible. I'll know from experience one day.

Legend 4ever, why bother? :confused:
Why try and start a fight about why your favourite author is better than ours? So what if you don't like his books, we do, so let us talk in peace without your childish arguments distracting from the point of the thread.
:rolleyes:

NightWish
12-12-07, 20:31
That's terrible :(

Paperdoll
12-12-07, 20:34
All I have to say about the silly argument is... taste is debatable. You don't like when we go on and on about how we think your favourite something or others suck, despite us thinking they lack talent, etc etc but you feel entitled to do so in such a thread? Sorry if you misread the thread title, but this isn't a general thread for discussion of Terry or his books, it's simply saddening news and I don't think any of us could care less wether you like him or not.

I don't know you therefore I cannot make any assumptions about you other than the one I already wrote about, however there are always times when someone should just shut the hell up and keep their thoughts to themselves. It's called common sense. And you just skipped right through it.


As for the topic itself, really saddening news indeed. I can't call myself a fan since I only read one of his books (we only have about 4 or 5 translated here...) but definitely enjoyed it. Let's just hope for the best...

Jacob x5
12-12-07, 20:34
This is very sad. :( My grandma has Alzheimer's and she's literally losing her mind.

Samsdad
12-12-07, 20:41
This is very sad. :( My grandma has Alzheimer's and she's literally losing her mind.

That is very sad. You have my sympathy.

Harlan Ellison once said something to the effect that reading a Terry Pratchett book was like being taught some very serious things by one of the kindest, gentliest teachers you could imagine. To have that voice gradually taken from us is going to break my heart.

Ampersand
12-12-07, 20:44
This is very sad. :( My grandma has Alzheimer's and she's literally losing her mind.

Sorry to hear that Jacob. I've never known anyone with the disease, but I wouldn't wish it on my worst enemy.

Catlantean
12-12-07, 20:59
That's so awful, I don't know what to say...

kooky
12-12-07, 21:08
That is very awful, don't know what I can say... :yik: :(

Thorir
12-12-07, 21:17
Oh, I thought he died in the seventies...

Read 30 pages of one of his books. Crap.

Quasimodo
12-12-07, 21:21
I feel sorry for the man. His statement shows he's keeping an upbeat attitude about it, though. I've read some of his work and you've got to admit he has a knack for humour :)

myrmaad
12-12-07, 21:24
I haven't read many of his books, but the ones I read, I enjoyed very, very much. I can't imagine exactly what the standard of measurement is, here. The news is sad, one of my great aunts had Alzheimer's.

Geck-o-Lizard
12-12-07, 21:34
This is just horrible. Of all the ways for a writer to go, Alzheimer's has to be the most tragic. :(

Atlantean-Squid
12-12-07, 21:35
It's hardly good news. But hey, as the man himself says, he isn't dead, and still has it in him for -at least- a few more novels.

Mytly
13-12-07, 06:10
http://www.websmileys.com/sm/sad/310.gif

I don't think you can call Terry's books shallow if you've read them properly. I can't, anyway, but I'm biased. His first few might have been all-out fantasy parody, but the series changed a lot since to deal with some very relevant themes. His characterization has been marvellous too, in the figure of Sam Vimes in particular.

He's a very intelligent man, at the top of my list next to Douglas Adams. I think it's all down to appreciation of his humour.

(And you can't really call Terry over-commercialized when there's Rowling right over there.)
Agree wholeheartedly with each and every word, especially about Sam Vimes. (Well, ok, so maybe Adams and Pratchett are tied at the top of my list. ;))

This is just horrible. Of all the ways for a writer to go, Alzheimer's has to be the most tragic. :(
It's a horrible way for anyone to die, but I suppose it's worst for someone who makes a living through his imagination and intellect - just to see them fading away slowly ... :yik: *shudder*

BlackFlame
13-12-07, 06:41
I've been lucky enough to meet Terry Prachett a number of times, he's a prolific and very funny writer (there have been odd books that haven't made the grade, but most have) and a very sweet person.

Voni
13-12-07, 10:02
I'm really sad to hear this, I've only just got into his books (I read Wintersmith after grabbing it in Sainsbury's), and it's an utter crying shame. Poor bloke.

And to all those who keep sniping at each other, STOP IT. Get a life.

BlackFlame
13-12-07, 10:21
I'm really sad to hear this, I've only just got into his books (I read Wintersmith after grabbing it in Sainsbury's), and it's an utter crying shame. Poor bloke.


Wintersmith is (in my opinion) actually the weakest that he's ever written... I never even bothered to read the last 20 pages or so - however, his most recent "making money" marked a return to form. So, if you enjoyed Wintersmith, you're in for a treat with the others


And to all those who keep sniping at each other, STOP IT. Get a life.

Sorry.. you're right.

Greenkey2
13-12-07, 10:34
Extremely sad news :(

All I have to say about the silly argument is... taste is debatable. You don't like when we go on and on about how we think your favourite something or others suck, despite us thinking they lack talent, etc etc but you feel entitled to do so in such a thread? Sorry if you misread the thread title, but this isn't a general thread for discussion of Terry or his books, it's simply saddening news and I don't think any of us could care less wether you like him or not.

I don't know you therefore I cannot make any assumptions about you other than the one I already wrote about, however there are always times when someone should just shut the hell up and keep their thoughts to themselves. It's called common sense. And you just skipped right through it.


Very well said Carla. This is not the time nor the place to start a flame war over relative tastes in books. It's stories like this that put such arguements squarely back where they belong - in the box marked "pointless and purile".

Zac Medley
13-12-07, 11:06
He's a very intelligent man, at the top of my list next to Douglas Adams. I think it's all down to appreciation of his humour.


He IS Douglas Adams, he just parodied Tolkein instear of Star trek.

Ampersand
13-12-07, 11:34
He IS Douglas Adams

I'm hoping you meant that in a metaphorical rather than technical sense. :o

rowanlim
13-12-07, 13:27
Alzheimer's is one of the most cruel illnesses, to be honest...its hard on the affected plus their loved ones...i've never heard of terry pratchett but its horrible to know that :(

jaywalker
13-12-07, 13:47
The guy is one of the hardest working authors out there. His books always hit the mark in terms of the genre hes in (comedy). Yes they arent to everyones taste, but those who love his stories LOVE his stories.

To hear he's been diagnosed with this made me feel truly sad. However i found his response to be exactly what i'd expect from him `i am not dead` `i will go on`

Voni
13-12-07, 13:52
To hear he's been diagnosed with this made me feel truly sad. However i found his response to be exactly what i'd expect from him `i am not dead` `i will go on`

For him to say that is incredibly brave, if it were me I'd curl up in a ball and cry.

Legend 4ever
13-12-07, 14:09
Did I ever say that I am mature? :p

And that was my opinion. I wasn't ticked about yours, so I don't see why mine should get you so worked up.

And you're going into proper things, which I never even said anything about.

I wouldn't diss Terry in this thread, since people are Grieving, and they're already in a pretty rotten mood. I wouldn't come in and just make them more ****ed.

This is a thread about a man who is going to experience something that is going to be very tragic. This is a man that many love and respect. No one is interested in your psuedo-intellectual opinions nor is anyone impressed with your "I read Tolstoy". This is a time to keep your opinion to yourself if you have any decency about you.
It is never time not to express your opinion. And I am not trying to impress anyone, why would I? I have a healthy personality.

Fully agreed. Legend 4ever, we have just learned that one of our favorite authors is suffering from a horrible disease, and you have to come make it worse like this? What possible reason could there be for you to try and make us feel even worse? Other than pure malevolence? :confused:

I am saddened at this news. Terry Pratchett is one of my favourite authors, and illnesses like this are horrible. I'll know from experience one day.

Legend 4ever, why bother? :confused:
Why try and start a fight about why your favourite author is better than ours? So what if you don't like his books, we do, so let us talk in peace without your childish arguments distracting from the point of the thread.
:rolleyes:

All of this just because I said that I don't like his work. I said that I was sorry for him, but I had to add that I don't like his work at all.

deepbluesea
13-12-07, 14:22
This is terrible, I have all his books and its always horrible whe it happens to someone you respect and admire.

FourBalls
13-12-07, 14:23
All of this just because I said that I don't like his work. I said that I was sorry for him, but I had to add that I don't like his work at all.
Nah, you didn't have to...You chose to. But whatever.

Anyways, this really is sad. :( I haven't read any of his books to be completely honest, but I've been thinking of reading one for a while now.

Andariel
13-12-07, 14:29
Even though Im very partial to book genres like mystery, murder, philosophy, history, etc I did enjoy some of his work. Nevertheless Im terribly sorry for him and I know this wont be easy. I just wish him all best in the world. :(

BlackFlame
13-12-07, 14:33
All of this just because I said that I don't like his work. I said that I was sorry for him, but I had to add that I don't like his work at all.

No, it's because it's inappropriate... you show no respect for the author, for a man that's just announced that he has an illness that we should all fear, or for the people who were expressing their feelins about it.

"I'm sorry for him... but his work is vague and boring" you said before goingt on to make completely irrelvant comparisons to Tolstoy.. do you think he expects his works to be compared to War and Peace? His books are entertaining and clever - though cleary lacking the depth that you apparently need - and are enjoyed by thousands.

Start a separate "Let's discuss the merits of Tolstoy vs Terry Pratchett" elsewhere

biohazard1379
13-12-07, 14:53
One of the best authors ever, thats too bad. :(

Legend 4ever
13-12-07, 14:55
No, it's because it's inappropriate... you show no respect for the author, for a man that's just announced that he has an illness that we should all fear, or for the people who were expressing their feelins about it.

"I'm sorry for him... but his work is vague and boring" you said before goingt on to make completely irrelvant comparisons to Tolstoy.. do you think he expects his works to be compared to War and Peace? His books are entertaining and clever - though cleary lacking the depth that you apparently need - and are enjoyed by thousands.

Start a separate "Let's discuss the merits of Tolstoy vs Terry Pratchett" elsewhere
I said that because they attacked me for saying bad things about him. I just HAD to say that and accept that and don't make a big deal, for God's sake.

Mr.Burns
13-12-07, 15:22
Let's give it a rest ok? There's no reason to start turning this into a witch hunt.

BACK ON TOPIC...

Never read any of his works but I'm saddened by this latest news. It's never easy to watch a family member's mind slip away.

Mytly
15-12-07, 13:59
I've been thinking so much about Pratchett for the past two days that "Wintersmith" just jumped my "Books to read" queue and became my top priority. :D

pEhouse
15-12-07, 14:33
Coincidentally I just started reading my first book by Terry Pratchett last week and I have to say I quite like it. It's always sad when things like this happen to such intelligent people.

Survival
15-12-07, 15:10
Oh no! My third favourite author :(. Im so sorry to hear that :(

L.C
18-12-07, 09:32
I haven't read any of his work, but I know his fans are a very faithful and intelligent group and all of you have my warmest sympathy.

He's obviously going to continue as best he can for as long as he can, which is the best thing for him, his family, and all his fans.

My own father died of Alzheimer's nearly 4 years ago, and like others have said, it's not a very easy thing to witness, especially when that person once had a very sharp and astute mind.

My best to you all :hug:

Voni
18-12-07, 09:43
Coincidentally I just started reading my first book by Terry Pratchett last week and I have to say I quite like it. It's always sad when things like this happen to such intelligent people.

It was the same here. I'd just read Wintersmith and I thought I had to check out his other works, and this happened. It's such a sad thing to happen.

Forwen
18-12-07, 13:18
I owe the man a lot. A lot. As usual as it is with things I can't bear to think about, I'll let it slip off my mind. Till the next book, I guess.