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Sequence a Science Fiction Writer

$48,665raised of $20,000 goal
243%

Organizer: Beneficiary: Jay Lake

The Overview. . Jay Lake is an award-winning American author of ten science fiction novels and over 300 short stories. He is also one of more than a million Americans who have colon cancer....

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The Overview

Jay Lake is an award-winning American author of ten science fiction novels and over 300 short stories. He is also one of more than a million Americans who have colon cancer. Diagnosed in April, 2008, Jay's cancer has progressed from a single tumor to metastatic disease affecting the lung and liver, recurring after multiple surgeries and chemotherapy courses, and multiplying from single tumor presentations to multiple tumors presentations. Jay is now in his fourth round of chemotherapy, but it's not clear that it's working, and his doctors have little to go on in terms of advising further courses of treatment for him. In short, things are not looking good for Jay. Not at all.

However, a new technology is becoming available—one that may offer his doctors a better option for treating the cancer. We're trying to raise funds to allow Jay to have whole genome sequencing. There is a small possibility that the results of such a test, which is more comprehensive than conventional genetic testing of tumors, may suggest a treatment path that Jay's doctor's may not have considered, and that could be life saving. It's a really small chance, and Jay knows that.

For this fundraiser, we have asked some science fiction and fantasy writers to donate an "Act of Whimsy" which they will share with the community as we reach milestones in our fundraising.

The Acts of Whimsy

With each milestone in the fundraiser, donors and the larger community will be treated to an Act of Whimsy that has been unlocked by your pledges.

  • $2000 -- The Juvenalienation: NYT Bestselling author Tobias S. Buckell will crack open a locked box containing his oldest, complete first short story, typed out on cracked, yellowing paper and hidden away in shame lo these many years. Written when he was fourteen, it is full of embarrassingly awkward writing that he will turn into an eBook as a reward for anyone who donates. GOAL UNLOCKED!  Read Toby's first story.
  • $3000 -- Malt-O-Vision: hang out with NYT Bestselling author Tobias S. Buckell on a Google Plus hangout as he drinks his favorite scotches and answers questions and chats about... well, you bring the topic! The 1st five people to donate $100 or more get a seat in the Hangout. GOAL UNLOCKED!
  • $4000 -- Hugo Award-winning author and voice actor Mary Robinette Kowal will read selections of beloved classics as phone sex. GOAL UNLOCKED! Watch the video of Mary reading.
  • $6000 -- Hugo-award winner Jim C. Hines will read excerpts from his very first completed story, which was a 50,000 word novel about his Dungeons & Dragons character, a purple-clad elf named Nakor. (That's right, his D&D character was blatantly ripped off from Raymond Feist's work.) But that's not all! He'll do the reading in costume, dressed as Nakor, and will post the video for all to see and mock! GOAL UNLOCKED! Watch the video!
  • $7000  -- Best-selling authors Scott Lynch & Elizabeth Bear will perform a sock puppet show of one of Jay Lake's short stories. gOAL UNLOCKED! Sock puppets video.
  • $8000 Seanan McGuire Filking Bonus GOAL UNLOCKED!
  • $9000 -- Hugo-award winner, writer for Doctor Who and novelist Paul Cornell will try to sing Kate Bush's "Wuthering Heights" Watch the video.
  • $10,000 -- Best-selling author Cherie Priest will present a steampunk/goth fashion show for pets with the able assistance of her cat Spain and her dog Greyson. GOAL UNLOCKED! Link to steampunk pet fashion expo.
  • $12,000 -- The creators of the Jay Lake Documentary will unveil a comic short for Jay and you. GOAL UNLOCKED!
  • $15,000 -- NY Times Best-selling author and Hugo award winner John Scalzi will sing a lost Bob Dylan song, in the style of Bob Dylan. GOAL UNLOCKED! Link to serious work of Dylanology
  • $17,500 --  NY Times Best-selling author Patrick Rothfuss will unleash a "terrible surprise." GOAL UNLOCKED!  The terrible surprise is an excerpt from Pat's high school novel, which includes a barbarian, a dwarf, and a Cat-Man samurai
  • $20,000 -- NY Times Best-selling author Neil Gaiman will perform a cover from the Magnetic Fields album 69 Love Songs whilst accompanying himself on the Ukulele. Every donor of $50 or more will be entered in a drawing to choose the song that Neil sings. GOAL UNLOCKED!

STRETCH GOALS
We set the goal at the bare minimum to get Jay this chance for treatment, but there are tons of other expenses not covered by his medical insurance. Thanks to the generosity of the community, we have some amazing stretch goals coming.

  • $25,000 -- Award-winning author Seanan McGuire rewrote all of season one of VERONICA MARS as a Shakespearean tragedy. Which counts as transformative. She is assembling a small cast to record the closing sequence from the final act of "The Tragedy of Lillian Kane, Princess of Neptune." GOAL UNLOCKED! Download the radio play.
  • $30,000 -- A radio play adaptation of one of Jay's short stories. GOAL UNLOCKED!  Casting details are being finalized now.
  • $32,000 -- C.E. Murphy rereads her first novel. She will open the file for the first time in twenty years and read excerpts aloud while offering commentary to her 19-year-old self, all live and first-reaction-on-film, for your entertainment and, she suspects, to her own utter horror. GOAL UNLOCKED!
  • $35,000 -- Cory Doctorow will release a  a CC-BY scan of his head while recreating any funny expression that John "Rubberface" Scalzi can photograph himself making, and post a 3D scan doing so. That's right, a scan of Cory's head that you can create even more whimsy with. GOAL UNLOCKED! Help John Scalzi choose Cory's face--er, just click this link it will make sense when you get there.
  • $37,000 -- Howard Tayler will draw a picture of Jay Lake kicking cancer's ass. There may not be actual kicking, or an actual ass, but by the very loosest definitions of all the words in that sentence (and a pretty tight definition of "I will draw a picture") that's what you'll get.  GOAL UNLOCKED The drawing. Time lapse video of the drawing process.
  • $40,000 -- Everybody plays! If you've been wanting to commit an Act of Whimsy for Jay, create one and post a link to it in the comments thread here. One of these whimsy creators will be chosen to receive a genuine Jay Lake Hawaiian shirt. GOAL UNLOCKED
  • $42,000 -- NY Times Best-selling author Steven Gould will run for SFWA president! GOAL UNLOCKED
  • $44,000 -- Video, "How to Write Like My Dad" by Bronwyn Lake GOAL Unlocked. Video
  • $46,000 -- Klingon language expert Lawrence Schoen will present Five Pick-Up Lines Used in Federations Bars by Klingons GOAL UNLOCKED Klingon Pickup Lines
  • $50,000 -- A cookbook featuring Bronwyn Lake's friends and favorite authors. Plus, Tobias Buckell will shave his head.
  • $100,000 -- Jay! The Musical! 

More Details about Whole Genome Sequencing

Whole genome sequencing can be used to compare the entire gene sequence of a cancer cell to the sequence of a normal cell. It's a more thorough genetic analysis than those available in leading cancer centers, and there's some precedent for it as a lifesaving diagnostic test.

The first complete human genome sequence was completed by the National Human Genome Research Institute and Celera Corporation in 2003 at a cost of over $3 billion. Since then, the technology has been rapidly streamlined for application to the research market, and the cost has fallen exponentially year upon year.

In July 2011, genetics researchers at Washington University in St. Louis decided to put their research sequencers to work to try to save their research colleague, Lukas Wartman, who had been diagnosed with acute lymphoblastic leukemia—the same cancer he was studying.

They identified a gene that was causing the cancer cells to grow out of control, but it was a gene normally connected with kidney cancer. Fortunately, there was a drug that had been tested and approved to target that gene, and Wartman's cancer went into remission when he was treated with it.

The basic cost of the sequencing today is $10,000. Expedited service for an additional $3000 will cut the 90 day turnaround time to between 30 and 45 days, which could make a crucial difference for Jay's rapidly progressing cancer. Analysis will cost $5000 to $7000 more, so we are looking to raise $20,000 to sequence Jay's cancer, in the hopes of duplicating the Wartman success.

There are no guarantees. Far from it. This is a slim chance. Jay's cancer has bounced back after aggressive treatment with the most advanced first-line, second-line, and salvage therapies available. It's possible the sequencing will turn up no new information, or that new information will emerge, but there won't be an effective treatment for it.

However, even if Jay's sequencing fails to turn up the answers we are all hoping for, his sequence will make a substantive contribution to science and the new field of clinical whole genome sequencing, His experience may help others, or may pave the way to save another life in the future.

In the event that Jay's costs are less than expected, or that funds are raised in excess of his costs, those funds will be used to support a much-needed leave of absence for Jay, who has worked steadily through all of his treatment, so that his body has the best possible chance of recovery, and so that he can spend time with his family.

Contact the organizers:
Catherine Shaffer and Mary Robinette Kowal

Contact the Organizer
Updates

Updates

02/13/2013
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We've raised $48665, but the fundraiser closed a few hours before we expected. If you wanted to donate but didn't get a chance, drop us an email with your pledge before 12 midnight and we will add your pledge to the official total.




02/13/2013
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Last day of the fundraiser. Can we make it to $50,000? We have two new Acts of Whimsy available today. Here is the Veronica Mars/Shakespeare radio play from Seanan McGuire, Cat Valente, Lynn Thomas, Paul Cornell, Elizabeth Bear.

And, for the $46,000 goal, we have unlocked Klingon Pickup Lines from Klingon language expert Lawrence Schoen.


<iframe width="420" height="315" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/7bjqG5PEJHs" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen=""></iframe>




01/27/2013
by
The $44,000 goal is unlocked! Enjoy Bronwyn Lake's video, "How to Write Like My Dad." We're still working on our spectacular $50,000 stretch goal.

<iframe width="560" height="315" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/65VMZLCgFsE" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe>




01/15/2013
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Time lapse video of Howard Tayler drawing a picture of Jay Lake kicking cancer's ass.

<iframe width="420" height="315" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/323zqCQxuUs" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe>

The picture itself is here. Howard has outdone himself and certainly raised the bar for all Acts of Whimsy in perpetuity. Thank you so much, Howard!




01/15/2013
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Check it out! Youcaring.com featured our fundraiser on its blog.




01/13/2013
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01/13/2013
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Scott Lynch and Elizabeth Bear perform Jay Lake's "Elf Shit" with sock puppets. <iframe width="420" height="315" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/fGRpmPikdik" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen=""></iframe>




01/13/2013
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John Scalzi brings you a "lost" Bob Dylan song. <iframe width="480" height="360" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/YYj2om3KnQw?rel=0" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen=""></iframe> Further details are available on his website.




01/13/2013
by
Here is Hugo-award winner Jim C. Hines will read excerpts from his very first completed story, which was a 50,000 word novel about his Dungeons & Dragons character, a purple-clad elf named Nakor. (That's right, his D&D character was blatantly ripped off from Raymond Feist's work.) But that's not all! He'll do the reading in costume, dressed as Nakor, and will post the video for all to see and mock!  


<iframe width="480" height="360" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/kFbHgpH9bf0?rel=0" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen=""></iframe> His facial expressions as he reacts to his younger self's writing are priceless.




01/13/2013
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And now! The Terrible Surprise from Patrick Rothfuss has been revealed. A piece of his high school novel which includes a character that he calls the proto-Kvothe from Name of the Winds.




01/12/2013
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My new morning routine: get up, check the fundraiser total, pick myself up off the floor, panic because we need to come up with a new stretch goal. This is seriously amazing, and humbling, and we will do our best to continue entertaining you with further Acts of Whimsy.




01/11/2013
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Thanks Angie Rush for getting Toby's story transcribed timely for us all!




01/11/2013
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Tobias Buckell has posted the promised short story, "Shani." This is the first complete short story he ever wrote. His write up about how he came to have a paper only copy twenty years laer is pretty amazing. Go forth and read.

And thank you for continuing to be awesome.




01/11/2013
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Paul Cornell brings us the promised his attempt at singing Kate Bush's "Wuthering Heights" with the added bonus of his co-star, Tom.


<iframe width="640" height="360" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/4pNJdaXLyTU?rel=0" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen=""></iframe> You can visit Paul's website to see his commentary, too.




01/10/2013
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Here is the video of Mary Robinette Kowal reading beloved classics like phone sex.


<iframe width="480" height="360" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/wuavnTcyuy8?rel=0" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen=""></iframe>




01/10/2013
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If you want to help Hugo-award winning author and voice actor Mary Robinette Kowal pick one of the classics she will read in her phone sex voice, she's taking suggestions on her website.




01/10/2013
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Yes, we are working on stretch goals!




01/10/2013
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Best-selling author and Hugo-award winner Seanan McGuire offered an undisclosed act of filking. Now it can be told:

"My act of whimsy? DISNEY MAGIC, BITCHES. I have promised an undisclosed act of filking, and here it is: I, and an assortment of the ever-rotating members of my mix and match band, will perform and record a cover of the Disney song of your choice in honor of Jay Lake. Animated movie? Musical? Live action classic? Phineas and Ferb? The possibilities, and the horrors, are endless. "Wreck It Wreck-It Ralph," "Age of Not Believing," "Rollercoaster," "That's How You Know"...whatever."

 If you have donated ANY AMOUNT, go to Seanan's blog comment there with the name of the Disney song YOU want to hear.




01/10/2013
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Here is an update from Jay, filmed by Waterloo Productions

<object width="640" height="360"><param name="allowfullscreen" value="true"></param><param name="movie" value="http://www.facebook.com/v/3787641463279"></param><embed src="http://www.facebook.com/v/3787641463279" type="application/x-shockwave-flash" allowfullscreen="1" width="640" height="360"></embed></object>

You can go to the Waterloo Page on Facebook to leave a message for Jay on the video.




01/10/2013
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Holy guacamole, people. We just made our $10,000 goal. Keep spreading the word, because Neil Gaiman!




01/10/2013
by
We are crossing goals faster than I can post updates. In less than two hours, we've raised more than $9,000 and have unlocked these goals.

  • $4000 -- Hugo Award-winning author and voice actor Mary Robinette Kowal will read selections of beloved classics as phone sex. GOAL UNLOCKED!
  • $6000 -- Hugo-award winner Jim C. Hines will read excerpts from his very first completed story, which was a 50,000 word novel about his Dungeons & Dragons character, a purple-clad elf named Nakor. (That's right, his D&D character was blatantly ripped off from Raymond Feist's work.) But that's not all! He'll do the reading in costume, dressed as Nakor, and will post the video for all to see and mock! GOAL UNLOCKED!
  • $7000  -- Best-selling authors Scott Lynch & Elizabeth Bear will perform a sock puppet show of one of Jay Lake's short stories. gOAL UNLOCKED!
  • $8000 Seanan McGuire Filking BonusGOAL UNLOCKED!
  • $9000 -- Hugo-award winner, writer for Doctor Who and novelist Paul Cornell will try to sing Kate Bush's "Wuthering Heights" GOAL UNLOCKED!

Our intrepid band of writers are busily getting their offerings ready to post. What can I say, your generousity is beyond our dreams.






01/10/2013
by
Malt-o-vision is unlocked!


I've emailed the first five people to donate $100 or more to let them know they have a seat at NY Times Best-selling author Tobias Buckell's Malt-o-vision Google+ Hangout. We'll post here with a link when they meet up to drink scotch and discuss anything.

Mary Robinette and Catherine




01/10/2013
by
You all are amazing. In less than half an hour, we've unlocked the first pledge goal. New York Times Best Selling author Tobias Buckell will be sharing his first EVER piece of fiction, written when he was just fourteen years old. In Toby's words, "Am typing 20 year old story written by 14 year old me into computer and thinking 'wait, what did I agree to do?'" Look for that as soon as he finishes keying it in. And thank you!


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