Bloomberg News

Scottish Author Iain Banks Suffering From Terminal Cancer

April 03, 2013

Author Iain Banks

Author Iain Banks said, “The bottom line, now, I’m afraid, is that as a late stage gall bladder cancer patient, I’m expected to live for ’several months’ and it’s extremely unlikely I’ll live beyond a year. So it looks like my latest novel, ‘The Quarry,’ will be my last." Photographer: Joseph Branston/SFX Magazine via Getty Images

The author Iain Banks said he is terminally ill and the novel he is writing is likely to be his last because he is expected to live for only “several months.”

Banks, 59, whose books include “The Wasp Factory,” “The Crow Road” and “Stonemouth,” said he has cancer.

“It started in my gall bladder, has infected both lobes of my liver and probably also my pancreas and some lymph nodes, plus one tumour is massed around a group of major blood vessels in the same volume, effectively ruling out any chance of surgery,” Banks said in a statement on his website.

“The bottom line, now, I’m afraid, is that as a late stage gall bladder cancer patient, I’m expected to live for ’several months’ and it’s extremely unlikely I’ll live beyond a year. So it looks like my latest novel, ‘The Quarry,’ will be my last.

“As a result, I’ve withdrawn from all planned public engagements and I’ve asked my partner Adele if she will do me the honour of becoming my widow (sorry -- but we find ghoulish humour helps). By the time this goes out we’ll be married and on a short honeymoon,” he said.

The Scottish author, who also writes science fiction under the name Iain M. Banks, said he first became aware he was unwell when he developed back pain in late January.

(Richard Vines writes for Muse, the arts and leisure section of Bloomberg News. Opinions expressed are his own.)

Muse highlights include Hephzibah Anderson on books, Jeremy Gerard on theater and Stephanie Green’s Scene Last Night.

To contact the writer on the story: Richard Vines in London at rvines@bloomberg.net or http://twitter.com/Richardvines

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Manuela Hoelterhoff at mhoelterhoff@bloomberg.net.


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