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robert jordan has a disease
March 27, 2006 11:48 AM   Subscribe

Robert Jordan has amyloidosis, a rare blood disorder that is remarkably fatal. The link has all the info you need, including: "[amyloidosis is] a rare blood disease which affects only 8 people out of a million each year, and those 8 per million are divided among 22 distinct forms of amyloidosis" and "Untreated, it would eventually make my heart unable to function any longer and I would have a median life expectancy of one year from diagnosis."
posted by taumeson (49 comments total)

 
http://www.amyloidosis.org/

Wiki
posted by taumeson at 11:49 AM on March 27, 2006


Remarkably fatal? I don't know if I would say that it would be unusual for a rare blood disorder to be fatal. That being said, it sounds like he's got the right attitude, that being: "Death, I laugh at you, I spit on your mother and fart in your general direction."
posted by blue_beetle at 11:52 AM on March 27, 2006


If I were him I would freeze myself untill they found a cure.
posted by delmoi at 11:55 AM on March 27, 2006


Am I an ass for hoping he finishes the Wheel of Time series first?
posted by NationalKato at 11:56 AM on March 27, 2006


Still, I would imagine that if more people had it research would be done on the protine to find a way to break it apart spesifically. If the protine just sits on the wall of the heart, then it should be easy to get to: anything in the blood would get right too it.

The problem is the cost of the research is much to high given the number of people affected.
posted by delmoi at 11:57 AM on March 27, 2006


Man, I'm sorry to hear that. Maybe now his publisher will spring for an editor.
Seriously, I hope he beats this.
posted by ooga_booga at 11:59 AM on March 27, 2006


bb:

Remarkably fatal? I don't know if I would say that it would be unusual for a rare blood disorder to be fatal.

I can't believe that's what you feel you need to comment on. I find it remarkable that the life expectancy is only 1 year, not that its fatal.

He says he's open to some experimental treatments, and that the next WoT book, A Memory of Light, is going to be completed.
posted by taumeson at 11:59 AM on March 27, 2006


No, tho we don't share the same taste in speculative fiction.
posted by mojohand at 12:02 PM on March 27, 2006


The link has all the info you need

Except maybe for some kind of explanation of who the hell this guy is.
posted by rocket88 at 12:03 PM on March 27, 2006


It's NEVER going to be finished, NationalKato. The blasted thing's open-ended, and at 5 or 6 cents a word plus royalties, he'd be a fool to cut it short. As it is, he says he's got enough books planned to write for the next 30 years. AAARGH!

That being said - I wish him all the luck in the world. What he's having done sounds damn painful and risky, and even though I hate how he's stretched things out with the Wheel of Time, I'm hoping he'll be able to finish the thing and start a NEW series at the end of it.
posted by JB71 at 12:03 PM on March 27, 2006


These aren't the stem cells that have Bush and Cheney in a swivet

Nicely understated putdown!
posted by Slothrup at 12:05 PM on March 27, 2006


The link has all the info you need

Except maybe for some kind of explanation of who the hell this guy is.


Ditto. Cripes.
posted by docpops at 12:08 PM on March 27, 2006


Except maybe for some kind of explanation of who the hell this guy is.

Fantasy author. Writes the Wheel of Time series, which is one of the most popular fantasy series of the past 20 years. It's at 11 books, all of them bricks; personally, I got through the first 4 in college before graduating and slacking off of them. I knew some people who were tremendous fans of the series, though others weren't so big on the later volumes.
posted by graymouser at 12:12 PM on March 27, 2006


I gave up on the series when it became clear he had no intention of finishing the story.
posted by Bonzai at 12:17 PM on March 27, 2006


I heard a rumor that the next WoT book (A Memory of Light?) was the last. Was this misinformation?
posted by NationalKato at 12:18 PM on March 27, 2006


I should clarify my previous comment as "the last in that specific series."
posted by NationalKato at 12:19 PM on March 27, 2006


NK, his fascination with the number 13 makes me speculate that there is at least one more after Memory of Light.

And I too thought about him needing to finish the series before dying. Morbid? Yes.
posted by WinnipegDragon at 12:27 PM on March 27, 2006


Wow, there's a lot of people I've never heard of on the front page today.
posted by agregoli at 12:29 PM on March 27, 2006


Boy am I sorry to hear this. I actually just finished his most recent book last night. I didn't really want to read it after the slog of the last few books, but I somehow started it anyway. It was a remarkably entertaining read and it is clear Jordan had started to think about wrapping up plot threads rather than starting new ones. It is a welcome addition to the series.

I hope he beats this condition and I look forward to reading some of his future books and speculate about how his condition has impacted his writing.
posted by Tallguy at 12:31 PM on March 27, 2006


Hmm, according to RJ's blog over at Dragonmount.com Memory of Light does indeed finish the main story arc.

Perhaps this will encourage him to tie up all the loose ends, and give some closure. I'd rather have another 15 years of books, but we take what we can get I guess.
posted by WinnipegDragon at 12:33 PM on March 27, 2006


Well, WinnipegDragon, he still has the WoT prequels to finish. I was just fearing him completing a book from each arc intermittently. Too many damned Aes Sedai names to remember.
posted by NationalKato at 12:37 PM on March 27, 2006


Damn, that sucks. I hope he beats this.

He better finish the damn series.
posted by bshort at 12:44 PM on March 27, 2006


I haven't read anything beyond the main arc, although I did receive New Spring as a gift. I was under the impression that it was the only prequel?
posted by WinnipegDragon at 12:44 PM on March 27, 2006


The blog linked to above seems to imply the prequel story arc will consist of three books.
posted by NationalKato at 12:45 PM on March 27, 2006


I sat down and figured out how long it would take me to write all of the books I currently have in mind, without adding anything new and without trying rush anything. The figure I came up with was thirty years. Now, I'm fifty-seven, so anyone my age hoping for another thirty years is asking for a fair bit, but I don't care. That is my minimum goal. I am going to finish those books, all of them, and that is that.

See, now THAT is how you deal with a diagnosis of life-threatening illness.
posted by frogan at 12:45 PM on March 27, 2006


As it is, he says he's got enough books planned to write for the next 30 years.

Robert Jordan is an intolerable hack. This is why I quit reading him.

Best of wishes to him, though, so that he can keep cranking out the crap and feeding it to his bookcrack-addicted readers.
posted by teece at 1:19 PM on March 27, 2006


I heard a rumor that the next WoT book (A Memory of Light?) was the last. Was this misinformation?

Ha ha ha. This "rumor" was going around when book 3 was about to come out. And book 4. And book 5...

He will never finish them, even if he makes it to his goal of 87 (which I hope he does).
posted by teece at 1:22 PM on March 27, 2006


The problem is the cost of the research is much to high given the number of people affected.

Not exactly -- it affects roughly the same number of people in the U.S. as 9-11 killed. So public perception, publicity, fear, and all that...
posted by LordSludge at 1:44 PM on March 27, 2006


I don't remember where I heard or read this, but IIRC there are to be 12 books in the WoT series. I loved the first 7 books, but found book 8 to be a bit tedious. There are so many characters, and some of them have unisex names so it's hard (at least for me) to remember who's male and who's female. I pressed on, though and made it half-way through book 10 and put it down about 2 years ago. I'll probably start that one over and finish the series, but right now I'm reading "New Spring (A Wheel of Time Prequel Novel)", which I am enjoying very much.

Regardless, he's one of my favorite authors. I think he's brilliant, and it saddens me to read about this diagnosis.

For those of you who enjoy this genre, I highly recommend David Eddings, Terry Goodkind and Stephen R. Donaldson.
posted by webjunkie at 1:45 PM on March 27, 2006


Should he live long enough, I think Jordan will finish the Rand Al'Thor story in Book 12. He won't finish it well, mind you; he'll rush past the moments you've been waiting for since The Dragon Reborn, and devote pages and pages to conversations between unmemorable Aes Sedai and the contents of Elayne's breakfast. But it will be completed.

He has 2 more prequels planned -- one about the young Tam Al'Thor, and his adventures as the Second Captain of the Companions of Illian. Another about the latter days of Lan and Moiraine's search for the Dragon Reborn, and how exactly they got to the Two Rivers just in the nick of time. He was quite excited about these, until the sales of New Spring turned out to be such a disappointment. Now, they've been put on the backburner.

Bookcrack indeed. The latter volumes are a colossal disappointment, and yet now that I've devoted 15,000 pages to this farce, I refuse to quit out of spite and sheer obstinancy. George RR Martin has taken Jordan to school and back in his Song of Ice and Fire series.
posted by junkbox at 1:50 PM on March 27, 2006


junkbox, I'm halfway through 'Clash of Kings' and enjoying Martin's style very, very much.
posted by NationalKato at 2:26 PM on March 27, 2006


I can't stand The Wheel Of Time. I'd not even read them for charity, I'd have to have a gun to my head before I even considered picking up one of these books again.

But I wish Mr. Jordan all the best, and hope that he beats this.
posted by kaemaril at 6:15 PM on March 27, 2006


This really sucks - I wish Robert all the best luck in dealing with this.

That being said....Damn. I had this conversation with a classmate in high school, over ten years ago:

[her] yeah, it's a long series
[me] yeah, I hope he finishes it before he dies
[her] for real

.....
posted by Floach at 7:04 PM on March 27, 2006


Nothing an Aes Sedai from the Yellow Ajah couldn't fix.

(disclaimer: I was thirteen and didn't know better.)
posted by ori at 7:36 PM on March 27, 2006


anyone else think that the procedure to try to extend his life seems a bit drastic..? Kill all of his bone marrow? If there were some kind of infinite blood supply, would constant blood transfusions save him?

and why have there been so many death or near-death FPPs recently?
posted by mhh5 at 7:39 PM on March 27, 2006


This is sad news. Never cared for his writing, he does have hack tendencies (still far better than Eddings and Goodkind) . But he paved the way for epic fantasy to be accepted and sought after by publishers. And for that I thank him and wish him well. No artist should have to face not getting to finish his lifeswork.

And yes, George R.R. Martin's "A Song of Ice and Fire" series takes it to school and back. Stephen Erikson's "Malazan Books of the Fallen" steal WoT's milk money and give it a purple nurple. Both are examples of fantasy with balls, and are not afraid of offing major characters, good and bad.
posted by Ber at 8:25 PM on March 27, 2006


Guys, put down the Martin, Jordan, etc. for just a second, and go pick up this book by R. Scott Bakker. Even if you aren't into the fantasy genre, I recommend this series.

Sad to hear about Jordan, though. If he succumbs before finishing his life's work... well.. that just sucks, no matter what you think of said work.
posted by dopamine at 8:37 PM on March 27, 2006


If he does not finish writing Memory of Light I will lay down on the ground and die.
posted by Baby_Balrog at 8:52 PM on March 27, 2006


From his blog:

"Don’t get too upset, guys. Worse comes to worst, I will finish A Memory of Light, so the main story arc, at least, will be completed. And frankly, as I said, I intend to beat this thing. Anything can be beaten with the right attitude, and my attitude is, I have too many books to write yet for me to just lie down. Don’t have time for it. Besides, I promised Harriet I’d be around for our 50th, and that means another 25 years from this month right there. Can’t break a promise to Harriet, now can I?"
posted by Baby_Balrog at 8:58 PM on March 27, 2006


Am I a sadist for hoping he doesn't finish it? It would stand forever, a literary Tower of Babel that began with tremendous vision, but fell apart amid the myriad voices of minor characters and their inane subplots. It would be a symbol of tragic hubris and a monument to how a fantasy series can go so very wrong.
posted by MasonDixon at 9:34 PM on March 27, 2006


Good luck Mr. Jordan. I hope you live many years to finish your fantasy soap opera.
posted by moonbiter at 10:09 PM on March 27, 2006


Martin is starting to make very Jordanesque noises in his most recent book though. First he turns out half a book, then nothing at all happens in it. I was waiting for a character to smooth her skirts and sniff.
posted by markr at 10:23 PM on March 27, 2006


George R.R. Martin is a sadist. He cares nothing at all about his audience, and he makes sure every one of his characters has some sort of pain and heartache just because he can. He takes his considerable talent and creates little vessels of his pain from being picked on when he was a kid.

Bah. I read "A Game of Thrones" and could barely finish it. It's such a fucking melodrama.
posted by taumeson at 5:56 AM on March 28, 2006 [1 favorite]


"Can’t break a promise to Harriet, now can I?""

That's made me tear up a bit. Dammit.
posted by catachresoid at 6:04 AM on March 28, 2006


You could end that series in a paragraph. Just throw in a deus ex machina and end it!
posted by malusmoriendumest at 6:44 AM on March 28, 2006


"But he paved the way for epic fantasy to be accepted and sought after by publishers."

No, that would be Tolkien. If not for him, we wouldn't be up to our necks in derivative high fantasy doorstoppers. As stated above in this thread, Robert Jordan is a hack, pure and simple --- he isn't doing anything that hasn't been done before, and better, and he's artificially extending the Wheel of Time series just so he can sell yet another volume of his excruciating infinitology of crap.

Still, I wish him all the best. May he get to live those extra 30 years, and more.
posted by Goblindegook at 9:31 AM on March 28, 2006


Please help me on this. My father here in Pakistan is being told by some doctors that he may have amyloidosis. He is going through tests and was diagnosed for carpel tunnel syndrome prior to this. After having a minor procedure he still has similar problems. Please help me if you know any doctors who can take a look at his test results. Please contact me in private.
posted by adnanbwp at 5:01 PM on March 28, 2006


To contact you in private would require that you provide some contact information. Like an e-mail address in your profile, for instance.

PLEASE NOTE: I cannot help you as I know nothing. zip. zilch. zero. about this disease. In fact, I haven't even read the link at the top of this page that might tell me something about the disease.
I'm just pointing out that if someone wanted to contact you, they would have no way to do that.
posted by raedyn at 9:31 PM on March 28, 2006


Thanks for that raedyn.
My contact information has been added to my profile. If any one can provide some guidance, please do so.
posted by adnanbwp at 4:06 PM on March 29, 2006


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