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A message from our sponsors

(I don't normally carry advertising here, but I'm happy to blog about good causes from time to time.)

As some of you might have noticed, Terry Pratchett was diagnosed with early-onset Alzheimer's last year. I'm not going to go into how horrible a disease Alzheimer's is, or how little gets spent on research into its causes, but I shall note that he donated £500,000 (US $1M) to the Alzheimer's Research Trust, and a bunch of UK-based fans are running the Match it for Pratchett campaign, to try to match his donation (in lots of smaller lumps, obviously).

Forbidden Planet (the largest SF bookstore in London) have acquired one of Frank Kozik's twisted toys — a 12-inch tall white vinyl MonQee, intended for the buyer to wreak technicolour havoc on — and have had it signed by a metric buttload of SF and fantasy authors. I personally inked in and signed the MonQee's ring-piece — now you, too, can have the truly unique opportunity to bid in a charity auction for a MonQee with a butthole by Charlie Stross.

Other folks who defaced the plastic primate include Neal Asher, Chris 'Fangorn' Baker, Tony Ballantyne, Chaz Brenchley, Holly Black, Ed Buckley, Paul Cornell, David Devereux, Brianna Flynt, Neil Gaiman, Amanda Hemingway, Tanith Lee, Tom Lloyd, Kari Maund, China Miéville, Andy Remic, Alastair Reynolds, Justina Robson, Mark Robson, Geoff Ryman , Sarah Singleton, James Swallow, Bryan Talbot, Freda Warrington, Liz Williams, and Frank Wu.

(Or you could go here to make a donation, if naughty monkeys aren't your cup of tea.)



No Pat Cadigan? She's the one who started Match It For Pratchett! (Which I donated to the day she started it.)


Marilee: Pat didn't make it out to the Radison Non-Euclidean at Heathrow for the eastercon.


A good friend of mine lost her mom to early-onset Alzheimers. It's a crappy disease. Hard on the families as well as the sufferer. Donation made.


The thing about Alzheimer's funding isn't that the amounts being spent on it are small (they aren't, except when compared to things like cancer and AIDS), it's that it's difficult to even diagnose at times, and the amount needed to find cures or even treatments will be very, very large (getting drugs past the blood/brain barrier is just one of the problems they have to confront).

Don't just look at government spending, either. There's a really, REALLY large amount of cash being spent on corporate research, often by companies that aren't officially looking for a treatment. A bunch of funding is coming from insurance companies - they're looking at, literally, TRILLIONS of dollars in payouts over the next few decades, so a few billion now is a good investment.

There are some promising treatments (and potential cures, and preventatives) in the works, but it takes so long for most of them to even show results that it's expensive as hell to run clinical trials.


Thank you very much for the post and for giving the MonQee his arse - when he goes up for auction, I'll keep you posted. I hope he does both the Fund and his signatories proud.



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This page contains a single entry by Charlie Stross published on June 2, 2008 5:09 PM.

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