Author Iain Banks has revealed that he has late stage cancer and is unlikely to live for more than a year.
The Scottish writer posted a message on his official website saying his next novel The Quarry, due to be published later this year, would be his last.
The 59-year-old's novels include The Wasp Factory, The Crow Road, Complicity and the Culture series.
The statement said his health problems came to light when he saw his doctor, suffering from a sore back.
He was diagnosed with jaundice, before further tests established the full extent of his illness.
In the personal statement on his website, Banks said he had asked his partner Adele to marry him and was now on a short honeymoon.
Fellow Scottish author, Ian Rankin, said the news of Banks' terminal cancer was "just awful".
He Tweeted: "Typical of Iain to propose marriage to his partner Adele with the words 'Will you do me the honour of becoming my widow?"
Banks, who lives in North Queensferry, Fife, said he had cancelled all future public engagements.
He 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."
Truly a sad day.