• “The smartest historical sci-fi adventure-romance story ever written by a science Ph.D. with a background in scripting 'Scrooge McDuck' comics.”—Salon.com
  • A time-hopping, continent-spanning salmagundi of genres.”
    —ENTERTAINMENT WEEKLY
  • “These books have to be word-of-mouth books because they're too weird to describe to anybody.”
    —Jackie Cantor, Diana's first editor

Best Before…2013?

You know, I don’t usually _feel_ old, bionic knees notwithstanding. But I got a letter a couple of months back from the “Be the Match” organization that gave me pause for a moment.

“Be the Match” ® is the registry for the National Marrow Donor Program ®, which I’ve belonged to for the last thirty years or so. This is the registry that allows people to volunteer as a potential donor for bone marrow, should their genetics prove a good match for someone in need of a transplant.

I’ve never been asked to donate—evidently I don’t match many people –but have been on their books a long time. So along comes this letter, containing a small Certificate of Recognition and Appreciation, recognizing me “for outstanding commitment to and life-saving support of the Be The Match Registry ®.”

After thanking me, the letter went to say (in boldface type, no less):

“With your 61st birthday approaching, you will soon complete your eligibility for being on the registry as a potential donor.”

So evidently my bone marrow has expired, in terms of shelf-life. [g] The letter went on to ask me to donate $100 (tax-deductible—or at least it _was_, before the latest round of tax-hikes) to the Registry, to help them in recruiting a replacement donor.

Frankly, I thought it might be more effective to mention it here, in case any of you kind folks feel moved to sign up. The letter says further:

“Since 1987, we have facilitated more than 50,000 transplants from unrelated donors to give patients a second chance at life. Last year alone, we helped more than 5,500 people get the transplants they needed. We’re very proud of those accomplishments, but we have much more work ahead of us. Each year 10,000 patients with leukemia, lymphoma and many other life-threatening blood cancers need a marrow transplant from an unrelated donor.”

So. If any of y’all are interested in helping out with this valuable work, you can find out more details at BeTheMatch.org/help. Any of you who haven’t expired yet, I mean…

P.S. You want old? Well, age is relative. The photo above was taken this past August in the park at Castle Leod, Strathpeffer, Scotland. The tree I’m standing in front of was planted by Mary of Guise (this would be Mary, Queen of Scots’ _mother_) when she came to visit the castle back in 15-something. [You can see more about the Castle itself here.] Both the tree and I are doing Just Fine, Thank You.

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76 Responses »

  1. I have recently completed reading the seven “Outlander” books. What a treat! Although an avid reader, I had not even heard of them before recently, although my daughter who loves science fiction and romance novels had been recommending them for a few years. As I do NOT read either genre, her words were falling on deaf ears. Thankfully, the message finally got through, and after reading “Outland,” I inhaled the remaining six!

    I do read a lot of nonfiction, some fiction, and lots of history, biography, etc. I have a degree in history (European), and am of Lowland (Border) Scottish ancestry.

    NOW, the big question. I have been fascinated by the expressions that Claire uses throughout the series because they are the same ones I use! Even to the Biblical quotations! Absolutely uncanny. It is rather like someone following me around recording my speech habits. I grew up in Middle Tennessee (Nashville), have lived around the world, and am now in Houston, Texas. I know that you grew up in Arizona. So why do you use those expressions? It may be in part because we both read a lot (and so cross-pollination has occurred), or because you researched speech in North Carolina/the Southeast, or of the 18th century (some of which lingers in parts of the South). It mystifies me, and so I would love to know how you came up with all those expressions. Also, you seem to know a lot of scripture for a Roman Catholic. Usually Catholics are not so familiar with the Bible. That is surprising.

    I have just turned 70 and am experiencing some of your reactions to turning 60. Neither of us looks our age, but apparently we both have knee “issues” Ha!

    • Dear Mary–

      I’ve been reading the Bible nightly since I was eighteen. Some of it’s bound to rub off. [g] (It is, btw, a popular misconception that Roman Catholics don’t “do” Scripture. Every single Mass has three Scripture readings, and most parishes have at least one Bible Study group.]

      As to expressions…most of Claire’s are what one would expect of an Englishwoman from the mid-20th-century (circa WWII), who’d had a lot of exposure to Americans, and either reads widely or associates with people who do.

      Me…I read widely. [g]

      –Diana

      • I find it so amusing that people think Catholics don’t read the Bible. Thank you for your reply and explanation. The Eucharist Adoration references are spot on.

        Thanks again Diana!

        Janet

      • Hi Diana…

        I am from North Carolina and some of my extended family members tell me that my grandfather’s relations were from Scotland. Their last name was/is Queen. I have not researched this very deeply…not very many connections left in the family…but I was wondering if you have any insight into that last name. It is very common around the area of North Carolina where I live. Thoughts? Of course for any of us NC natives it was a delight to discover your novels… I am 37 and my grandparents are gone…no one has much information on our family tree, sadly. I realize the name could have morphed and changed throughout time….

        Amy J.

        • Dear Amy–

          No, I’m sorry, I don’t know anything about your surname. You might check some of the “Tartans and Clans of Scotland” type books (there are _lots_ of them), as Queen (or McQueen) may be a sept of a particular clan.

          –Diana

        • Amy — You might check out Ancestry.com. I have found family connections there. And a few I NEVER would have found if I had not ordered/purchased their DNA swab kit and submitted it (also my father’s, which I gave him as a Father’s Day present). The site connected me to a relative I’d never known of, based on both our submitted genetic tests.

          – Cheryl

      • Hi Diana

        Thank you for the wonderful books! A girlfriend recommended the books and I began Highlander (I live in Australia) under duress only to be hooked immediately and have subsequently read the entire series – I am now reading Highlander again for the fifth time!

        In response to Mary, I too am a roman catholic and the Bible was one of the first books I began to read. We understand and know the Bible as well as any other Christian – it is a part of who we are – and we do not necessarily need to attend Scripture Classes or Bible Study groups. Thanks for helping to dispel that misconception.

        I love Claire’s expressions – most of which I too use. I also am familiar with most of those used by Jamie and the Mackenzie’s and Fraser’s – my great grandmother emigrated from Scotland to NZ and raised my mother during WWII – they are used prolifically by her!

        tapadh leibh! Leanne

    • Bravo to Diana and everyone who has registered to “Be the Match”!
      Our friends’ nine year old daughter needed a bone marrow transplant desperately. “Be the Match” located the one single person from their worldwide registry who was her match. No one ever really expects to get that call, but when it happens, you may be the only one who can save a life.

      • Thank you to all those who have registered with “Be the Match”. My husband was diagnosed with ALL 14 months ago and will probably require a bone marrow transplant in the next six months. Here’s hoping we find a match so our kids can have a dad!

  2. Bone marrow has a shelf-life!? Who knew? Seriously, I’m approaching the end of my marrow’s shelf-life, so I’m not a good choice as a replacement.

    I did want to say thanks, again, for the wonderful hours of reading you’ve given me. I reread the _whole_ kit and caboodle regularly. ; )

  3. Diana

    From all the photographs I’ve seen of you you are ageless!

    Jerry

  4. Yesterday, I picked up my copy of “Outlander” and started another re-read of the series–and fell right into Claire’s world, again.

    Also ordered “A Trail of Fire” (through Amazon UK), and it’s on its way.

    Eagerly awaiting publication of “Written in My Own Heart’s Blood”.

    My thanks to you, Ms. Gabaldon, for sharing your brilliant gift with us.

    Maria Dyson
    Metairie, Louisiana

  5. Hello, Diana, my coworker and I have been speaking “Scots” to each other or when instant messaging (ie “Och!”, “Aye”, “Dinna fash, lassie”…..) since we both began reading your wonderful novels. I love them because you do not dumb down your writing. I abhor choppy sentences. Your novels are so meaty, in words and plot. I thank you for that.

    I went online to look up the Fraser clan, and noticed that the current Lord Lovat (Simon) seems to be tall and has the slanted cat eyes and long nose, but dark hair, that Jamie’s description has. I have no idea how old he is now, but if he is as young as the photso show, maybe he could, with red hair, be your Jamie….just an idea.

    Thank you again for your novels. My coworker and I are going to read all of your books, not just the Jamie and Claire series. We really like John Grey, too. Have a great day!

  6. LOL! I love that you got a letter telling you part of yourself has been expired! Are you suppose to write them a thank you letter back? haha That being said, I wonder if the rest of our body parts has an expiration date, I would like to use what I can while it’s still good ;)

  7. There is no way I would have guessed you were 61 – you look so much younger! I too turned 61 recently and don’t feel I look my age either – and I certainly don’t feel it. I am “proud” to say that I also have my original knees and so far they are holding up well; I do hope that continues.

    I’ve read all the Outlander series to date, although I feel I should go back and re-read them as some of the earlier details are fuzzy in places. I’m very excited for the next one to come out, but know that it will be published when it is published! LOL

    Keep up the great work and here’s to us “youngsters”!!!

  8. Old is relative…however, you are never to old to be an Organ, Eye and Tissue Donor! BeADonor.org

  9. Ditto–NO WAY you look 61. I was thinking like 41! You look amazing.
    And Catholics totally read Scripture! We like it too!

  10. I’m a fan of Claire and Jamie, have read and listened to all the books more times than I can count. I love to listen them – your narrator makes me feel as if I’m in the room with them.

    Anyway, as to aging, I thought you might enjoy my son’s comment when (at the age of 65) I told him I had signed my driver’s license for organ donation. He said “I thought you were past your expiration date!”

    Ah, well, I love him still!

  11. This is so funny. I watched a movie about a comet coming to earth. The plan was to have a lottery and if you were picked you would be saved in an underground bunker. The next time I saw the movie, I was past the cut-off age for the lottery. That’s when I knew, I’m no longer comet worthy! Yikes. I still have my original knees but I have developed cataracts. I’m just glad they have these spare parts available. I’ve seen Diana at various book signings over the years and I think there’s a really creepy portrait in a closet somewhere.

  12. Diana, I am glad you are able to laugh about your expiration date! I too am turning 61 this year, so count me out of the marrow org. I think you look fabulous and I like to think that as we ascend in the age department we are like fine wines and good cheese…better and better, sweeter, and wiser!!

  13. Why are all the posters here female? I’m a male and the Outlander is my favorite series. I am an audio book nut. I stumbled on the series last summer and I’ve listened to nothing else since June 2012. I’m almost through my second reading. Davina Porter has become my favorite narrator and has joined Diana as my favorite author. I’m 64 and live with my wife and four daughters and for the first time in my life have started to realize I’m getting old and also have an “expiration date”. My doctor asked me last week if I had any worries. I told him the big worry in my life is something happening to me and I never find out what happens to Jaime and Claire. Right then and there I think he thought I was a certifiable nutcase.

    Because of the timing I had to chuckle tonight when I read this thread. So, Diana, I’m here in NH on my death bed (a little exaggeration) patiently (sort of) waiting for you and Davina.

    • Dear Herb–

      Not to worry; there are a lot of male readers–but a lot of them are servicemen, who probably don’t have time or opportunity to post on blogs. [g] Just keep taking your vitamins and getting regular exercise; everything should be fine.

      –Diana

    • Hi Herb,

      I am happy to hear you enjoy the books, too. My husband has read all the Outlander books. He began them while overseas in Iraq, through my prodding. Though I only had to to prod him a little to BEGIN. The rest just followed naturally :) He loved them! It helped us to be “closer” while separated for such a long stretch. He is now retired, after 31 years of service, but is patiently waiting for the next adventures in the lives of Jamie, Claire, and the whole clan.

      Bonnie

    • Herb, I am compelled to write so you will know there are more of us lurking around. My wife gave me Outlander around 1998 or so, because she knows I like time travel stories. I anxiously await each new book and I’m a real fan. On a vacation to Scotland several years ago we did a self-guided tour of all the Outlander sites we could find. We stayed at Bunchrew House for part of the time–excellent! Sorry, I digress. My wife stopped reading somewhere around the third book because she doesn’t want anything bad to happen to Jamie and Clair. Good grief.

      By the way, when we married in 1997, my wife Christina had the inside of my wedding band inscribed with our initials, the date and one word: Always.

      Herb, you and I are about the same age, and my wife and I just moved to NH. It appears you and I are in excellent condition for the shape we’re in. And I agree with you that Davina Porter is perfect for these books.

      Cheers!

    • Herb,
      I was loaned the books on disc for my 200 mile commute from Seattle to Spokane, WA. I listened while my wife read. When I came home for the weekend, we’d compare notes. She was talking about parts that I had not heard. That’s when I checked the discs and found I had the abridged version, so when my job in Spokane was over, I picked up the books and read them.
      I am absolutely taken with the series and have the full set of books (two autographed). I am an amateur history buff and find the historical references fascinating. My wife is half Scot, so the flavors of the language and Gaelic expressions remind me of visits to her grandparents.
      A note to anyone doing the books on disc: Take your disc player off of “random”. :-D
      I’m 67 and both knees are fine. ;-)

    • When my older sister was diagnosed recently with breast cancer which had metastasized into the bones (she hadn’t been having her regular checkups because she felt she should be immune because she has been helping our younger sister deal with her own third recurrence of breast cancer and now a double mastectomy!) I told her she had to hang out until at least next March because that’s when MOBY is due out.
      Luckily (VERY!!) it has turned out that all she needs is medication (tamoxifen and herceptin and something else) and no chemo- or radio-therapy or surgery for treatment. But she is very much hanging out for the next book… AND the TV series!
      (And yes, I have been having my regular mammograms and ultrasounds. I even had genetic testing and don’t have the bad mutations in BRCA1 or BRCA2. )

  14. I’ve been on the marrow donor list for quite some time. (I’m days from being 45)

    You, Diana, do not look anywhere NEAR 61!

    That tree!! AMAZING!!!
    It is beyond cool that it has survived so many centuries!!

    Sign me patiently waiting the next novel :)

  15. Oh – I was surprised and checked the age you are able to be a donor in Germany….. only between 18 and 55…..

  16. Diana,
    I have thoroughly enjoyed your Outlander series. As I am presently reading the series for the third time, I am relieved to discover that I am not alone. I love Claire and Jamie and all of the depth of detail and character you have developed in the books. They are wonderful role models. And I can hardly wait for the eight book!
    Thank you for sharing your gift.

  17. Diana,

    Today I received a telephone call from my daughter ( a huge fan of yours) who is currently living in Lebanon. She had just read my comment to your “2013″ blog entry and was horrified!! She felt that I had been very rude and insulting to you which astonished and dismayed her. I, in turn, was astonished at her reaction. To me, I had just stated my honest preferences in reading material (without prejudice, I felt) and a mild curiosity about scripture quotation. Certainly no offense was intended. In fact, I have the utmost respect for you as a writer. You have an incredible imagination, and are an outstanding researcher with an unusually broad knowledge base, not to mention superb writing skills. Therefore, your books are packed with information–historical, medical, herbal, etc–with a surprising twist around every corner. They are a fascinating read, and can easily be reread for all those details one missed (or forgot) the first time around. There are not many writers who produce books one wishes to reread; yet you have many readers who do just that.

    At any rate, I would like to apologize for any offense to you or any of your readers. I have many Catholic friends and some family members as well. I certainly respect both them and their faith, and thank you and several of your fans for correcting me about scripture knowledge among Catholics.

    I had not stopped to think that, of course, Clair’s speech would be that of an English woman circa World War II because that was “her time,” although she was living a lot of her life in the late 18th century.

    Incidentally, my Scottish ancestors came to North America in the early 1700′s and were living in Mecklenburg County, NC at the time of the American Revolution. So they were there when you have Jamie and Clair in NC. They fought on the Patriot side, and after the Revolution, my fourth great grandfather migrated over the mountains into Middle Tennessee which was just opening up to white settlement. I have read that the largest concentration of people of Scotch-Irish descent ( largely Lowland Scots who moved-or were moved by the English- first to NE Ireland and then on to North America later) is in Middle Tennessee. Perhaps the largest concentration of Highlander descendants is in North Carolina or Appalachia. That I do not know.

    Thank you for your wonderful series which not only my daughter and I have enjoyed, but my husband as well–he on audio books however. He is a big fan of Scotland having been there a number of times. We all eagerly await Book 8.

    Sincerely,

    Mary

    P.S. The photo of you in front of the 400+ year old tree was terrific.

    • Dear Mary—

      Goodness, I wasn’t offended in the least! [g] Very gracious of you to write back, though.

      Yes, you’re right about the largest body of Highlanders having settled in North Carolina/Appalachia. The first Highland immigrants settled on the coast, then up the banks of the Cape Fear. Later ones came to join their kin and friends, and went right on up the river and into the mountains, which seemed very homelike to them (more trees, though…).

      All the best,

      –Diana

  18. Dear Diana,
    Thanks for your post about the bone marrow registry – if only a few of your zillions of fans sign up it will be one of the best things you’ve done all year – and well worth a lot more than $100. As a registered bone marrow donor here in Australia I am curious about how other countries do the same thing – I’ve been lucky enough to be matched to someone (a young man who has leukaemia) and donated marrow almost three years ago – and he’s still alive, hurrah!

    Along with several friends who also love your books I am eagerly awaiting the northern Fall without wishing the year away. As a person who had polio when I was a toddler I am highly unlikely to travel to either Scotland or any part of the Americas in this lifetime and want to record my thanks that your writing makes the times of Claire’s live as real to me as that beautiful tree planted by Mary was when you posed with it. I love travelling (through time AND space) with Claire. Thank you.

    Jennifer

  19. I just turned 50 this year and received my first “senior discount.” Yes a few places in Florida give this discount at 50. Needless to say,receiving your first one can be an eye-opening experience. However, that didn’t stop me from taking the 15% discount. :-) Just wanted to tell you that your books meant/mean a great deal to me and I am so looking forward to book 8. While in the military I was deployed to some nasty places, but I was always able to escape them through your books. More than once I found myself thinking about your books, and wanting to get back to the story, rather than keeping my mind on the business at hand. Your words helped fill the down time and take me away for a little while from where I was. Thank you and keep up the great work.
    I am also on the “Be the Match” donor list and once gave a presentation on their great work during a speech class in college. (Went back to college after I retired).
    Thanks again,
    Chris

  20. Diana,

    As the Revolutionary War was still raging at the end of Book 7, might Jamie be involved later with the fighting in the South in either Book 8 or 9 (I think I heard you say in an interview that Book 9 would complete the saga)? More Revolutionary battles were fought in South Carolina than in any other colony–a little known fact. Maybe some sort of incident involving the Swamp Fox, General Francis Marion, would be both interesting and colorful. My husband’s third great grandfather fought with Marion during the war.

    Mary

  21. Diana

    I started your books about 3 years ago, my sister actually found them after out mother passed. My sister begged for me to read them and at the time, I was not a reader. After a year and the 3rd attempt I finally got past chapter 2 of Outlander. I have become a full blown book worm now. To be honest it was a picture I saw of you on your web page. One day my sister called me and asked me to pull up your website because she heard that Book 7 had a release date and she wanted to know when. I was stunned when I saw your picture. You remind me Alot of my mother. That was when I decided to dedicate my self to reading something she read, but she passed 14 years ago. I Love your books.

    Thank You for giving me something else (reading) to love in life. In some strange way I feel that when I read your books, she is with me.

    Thank You so Much for what I consider, The Greatest Gift from a Stranger.

    Helena

  22. Hi Diana,

    I have also started a few months ago re reading your …-What was the acronym that you used to describe the Outlander series in the Trail of Fire? Anywho I am currently in Breath of Snow and Ashes. I have just enjoyed rereading the part where Ian and Rollo are being attacked by wolves as they run around the Mohawk village’s woods in the middle of the night.

    Where did you first get your inspiration for the character of Rollo?
    He sounds like a fantastic dog! I am a big animal fan and work for a Vets office for the past 8 years. I just finished pet sitting for an Irish couple who are our clients. They have a HUGE Irish wolfhound aptly named, “Finn”. They have taken him fox hunting and stag hunting in Ireland but now he is 10 and has some trouble with stairs. Even so to see him trot across their yard is a sight; his stride length is just Amazing!

    Do you have any dogs yourself? What was your favorite pet? (Past or present) :)

    Kind regards,

    Ilka

    P.S. (there is no way that your in your sixties!! um you def look like your 40!! )

  23. Hi Diana,

    I had to laugh at your story. A belated Happy Birthday to you!!! First, I must tell you …you don’t look 61. Secondly, my husband shares the same exact birthday with you—-1/11/52, and he doesn’t look 61 either, but has certainly has experience with bad joints. We have a similar picture of him and me standing next to a 6000 year old baobab tree in Africa. We’re certainly not ready for the boneyard yet!!!!

    I’m a huge fan. Can’t wait for the next BIG BOOK, and am sooooo excited about the possibility of a TV version.

    Keep up the great work.

    Best Regards,
    Janet

  24. God Bless you for being on the Bone Marrow Registry!! My 10 year old son is in need of a donor and I can’t express how grateful I am to all who are on the registry.

    I am a long time fan of your novels, this knowledge has helped me see you much more in a humanitarian light.

  25. Dear Diana, I have to add myself to the many fans who are finding it so hard to believe you are 61! What a bonnie lassie you are to be sure! What is your secret? LOL.

    I have every one of your very wonderful books and have read and re-read them. They are fabulous. At 76 going on 77 and a widow…. I am too old for the bone marrow donor list but hope many more people will consider it after reading your testimony.

    I didn’t know that there might be a film! Please don’t let them spoil your fantastic stories as they did with Pillars of the Earth by Ken Follett.

    Films leave so much out and often spoil the mental images we form of our favourite characters and how theylook. You can’t beat a book and you surely can’t beat yours for the best reads I’ve ever had.

    Take care now

    Leila

  26. I was surprised when, close to my 60th birthday, I received a notice from the Dept of Safety that I no longer needed to have my photo on my driver’s license. Are they kidding? How old is that law? Try to get on an airplane (or cash a check, or get a library card, or check into a hospital) without a photo ID.

    I wonder, Diana, if you attended Catholic school? I attended for 12 years, and we were strongly discouraged from reading the bible. The nuns and priests felt that they were better interpreters.

  27. What do you eat? I want to know, because I hope to you like you in 25 years!!!!

  28. I am also in the registry, and have yet to be approached as a bone marrow donor. I have had the honor of being a match for an infant undergoing open heart surgery and requested to donate packed red blood cells for her. I like the idea of promoting participation in BetheMatch to your readers. I know that there are many of us….

  29. I would like to thank you for that information. I just assumed that since I was an organ/tissue donor and obviously willing to give away anything that would be useful to someone, that I was also included on the bone marrow list. I will be 40 this year but hopefully I can help someone before my shelf life is up!

  30. Thank you so much for writing this post! Be the Match is an amazing organization and does wondeful work! You posting this provides such wondeful endorsement of their work and the need for donors! I have been an the list for 19 years and was matched with a patitent. I didn’t end up donating because the patient had a change in status and no longer needed a transplant.

  31. Glad to know I wasn’t the only one with hurt feelings when I got the “we don’t need you anymore” letter. I bet my bone marrow is just as good as it was 20 years ago!

    Love your books, novellas and everything else you give us. Can’t wait for the TV series. You have a lot of fans in this small south georgia town. Keep em coming!

  32. Wow. I’m over a hill that I didn’t even know existed!

    Like many on this list (and elsewhere, I suspect) I’m surprised to learn that you’re 61. Fortunately writers’ abilities don’t expire until they do–P.D. James recently had a new novel published and she’s 91. So, we can hope for lots more Jamie & Claire!

  33. Thank you so much for all the hours of reading pleasure you have provided. I have traveled to book signings to see you since “The Outlandish Companion”. Cleveland once, a couple of National Book Festivals, and several times at the Borders in Baileys Crossroads. A dear friend lives within walking distance of that store, which btw, is now a furniture store. Tradgedy! Will be ordering your new book from the poisoned pen today.

    Hope all is well with you and yours. Take care and keep safe. Eagerly awaiting Written…

  34. Diana,

    My brother had a bone marrow transplant in December of 2011. His donor was a person from Germany, still unknown to us all, but literally a life-saver! Since then he has been cancer free and enjoying life with his 2-yr old daughter and wife. This past weekend they organized a drive to sign up for donors. I have enjoyed reading your novels, which I am still doing, and I greatly appreciate that you found this letter and organization wortwhile enough to write to your fans. I hope just one person adds themselves to the list after reading your note.

    Kim

  35. Holy crap, you’re 60?!?!? I honestly thought you were maybe in your 40s… Go you! You look amazing!!! I can only dream of looking that good in 30 years.

  36. Dear Diana,

    I love the Outlander series and have been eagerly awaiting number 8!!! I was diagnosed with Hodgkins Lymphoma last year but am currently in remission. I certainly hope I never need a transplant but am grateful that there are people like you who are willing to donate! Thank you for sharing this and maybe more people will become donors and save more lives from cancer! Really, cancer sucks.

  37. I am 64 and like you, I do not look or act my age. I have always been an organ donor and did not know there were “expiration dates” on any organs or parts to donate.

    Just wanted you to know that I had run out of authors to read when your books came along. I love any long book (they should all be at least 1000 pages) because I am a fast reader. You were recommended by Laura Vosika. I am very grateful for that recommendation because your books have filled up many scary hours while I have been through surgeries, hopitalizations, and now major dental work.

    It is so easy, due to your amazing descriptions, to go into the story and disappear from pain for awhile. I cannot find strong enough words to express how much your Outlander Family has meant to me. I am about to embark on the journey of Book 7 and wish there were 7 more with the Fraser family and their descendents. I can honestly say that your books are my favorite of all time and I have been reading since I was 2 years old.

    Strange, with all the medical overhauls I have gone through my knees still work fine! Many Blessings to you and your family, Patricia

    • Dear Patricia–

      Why, thanks! I’m glad the books could be a help to you. [smile]

      I’m also glad medical science is keeping us both in good working order! [g]

      –Diana

  38. Thank you for highlighting Be The Match. I discovered your books a few months ago while recovering from an auto stem cell transplant to treat relapsed Hodgkins lymphoma. When I was diagnosed, many friends and family members joined the list. A few months ago my mother got her “aged out” letter and shortly thereafter a friend got called to donate. He claimed it left him slightly uncomfortable for 48 hours and in return he saved a 22 year old man’s life. Hopefully, many more will volunteer to Be The Match after reading your post.

  39. Hi Diana,
    Like so many others, I absolutely love your Outlander series. Can’t get enough of Jamie and Claire.
    Just wondering, will Davina Porter be narrating the audio version of Book 8? I hope so. Can’t imagine any other voices for Jamie and Claire. In fact, I’ve been biding the time until Book 8 comes out listening to the series on my drive to work every day for months now. I never tire of it, no matter where I am in the story.
    Thanks, Jeanne

  40. Dear Diana-

    I read my first romance novel after you recommended author Susan Elizabeth Phillips and quickly devoured every one of her books. Do you recommend any other romance authors? Have you read anything by Rachel Gibson? Looking forward to MOBY. Thank you for your novels. They are the best stories, have the best characters and allow the reader to become totally immersed in the best tale ever told!

    Amanda

    • Dear Amanda–

      Why, yes–Jennifer Crusie is very good for contemporary romance, and I’d _highly_ recommend Joanna Bourne for historical romance. Laura Kinsale’s books are older (she doesn’t write frequently these days), but I’d certainly recommend FLOWERS FROM THE STORM.

      –Diana

  41. Dear Diana,

    Are there any reasons why you wouldn’t put up posts? My last comment was not put up…and while I don’t remember it word for word I am quite certain there wasn’t any bad language, insult, or whatever else might warrant omission from the site.

    Having said this…I will say again that I absolutely love your writing and the characters you have created.

    You look absolutely wonderful…for any age.

    EileenM

  42. Hi Diana,

    I’m from Brisbane Australia. I’m a lady almost 61 years old. I have been a blood donor for many years now. Recently gave my 51 donation all gracefully received i may say. Not sure if i have a cut off date, but will continue to give blood till they say no more. I think it’s always good to help our fellow man or women out.

    Am on my 5th read of all of ur books.

    Kind Regards,

    Roslyn

  43. I hope to look half as good at 30 as you do at at 60. You ate absolutely beautiful and I love your writing. Thank you so much for the wonderful world you have created with your pen/keyboard.

  44. Diana, you certainly do NOT look anywhere near 60! I love that you bring light to bone marrow donation.
    I have been on the donor’s list for some time now and came very near being able to donate, but alas, the last hurdle made it not possible. They did not go into detail, just that there were steps and they called to make sure I was available. The last step in the process proved a problem apparently but they didn’t explain why.
    I didn’t know of the “expiration date” either, but I suppose I’m there as well. That’s too bad. I’ll forward your valuable information to everyone I can, however.
    Lastly, thank you for the incredible Outlander series. I learned so much history in those books! Both Scots and American, plus some French.
    My ex picked the book Fiery Cross to give to me one Christmas years ago, thinking it was a Christan book and it would satisfy me as a gift. hahahaha Little did he know it was the beginning of an amazing experience through history, love, war, family drama, and everything that makes these books so wonderful! I, like others, have read them more than a couple of times along with my 24 yr old daughter.
    Okay…reeeally lastly. Gerard Butler as Jamie? oooh pullleeeease??!!??
    Peace, Love and Liberty

  45. Just a quick note about the registry, it is SO easy now. I registered about a bazillion years ago, and yes, that is word because I say so, and I had to have 12 vials of blood drawn and then send it out express mail.

    Last year I nagged my husband into doing it and all he had to do was stick a giant Qtip in his mouth and mail it in a postage paid envelope. What a difference. It costs nothing but time to take the first step.

    I, too, have never been called, but will be there if ever needed. About to enter my fifth decade so they better get it while it’s hot.

    Thanks Diana, I do so enjoy the Outlander series! Have read, and reread them multilple times. Waiting with bated breath for #8.

    Barbara

  46. Another 66 year old male reader here who loves your books and is patiently waiting for MOBY.

    I am Scottish and my grandmother was a Fraser from Abriachan on Loch Ness side.

    My grannie used to swear at us in Gaelic when we annoyed her but my dad would never translate for us. I have since figured out most of what she was saying.

    As i am a fast reader i am putting off rereading the previous books again until i get some indication as to a likely publishing date.

    I also have bionic knees (39 years now and they are still going fine) hope yours last as long diana (they should be good for a few more books yet).

    Ken

  47. Dear Diana,

    Thank you for raising awareness of the National Marrow Donor Program – Be the Match Registry on your blog! It has been on my list to do for some time, and I completed my registration today, and will shortly be mailed the “q-tip” registration kit. The registration process was quick and simplified and the FAQ on the Myth/Facts – http://marrow.org/Join/Myths_and_Facts/Myths___Facts_about_Donation.aspx – on the donation process dispels the unfounded fears/concerns around donating (pain, bone loss, lack of anesthesia, etc.)

    Hopefully, I may be called upon to volunteer to an individual needing assistance before my, well, own expiration date of 60!

    Your books have been apart of my life since you published Outlander in 1991; thank you, again, for your masterful literary gifts to all of us.

  48. I’ve been a Be The Match participant for years also. I think its a wonderful thing to do. I’ve got 11 more years before my own “expiration” date.

  49. Dear Diana,
    My daughter talked enthusiastically about your books for over a year before I finally “broke down” and agreed to read the first one. After all, we moms must explore those things our children are passionate about in order to enhance our relationships….right? A mother’s duty is never done. Time travel just didn’t get it for me. Hah! I have devoured your series twice and am prepared to begin again. I love the detail, the complexity, the characters, the history…. I could go on. I love the development of the relationship between Jamie and Claire and the fact that it is taking them through their lives. I had pretty much thrown aside romances because they are often so shallow and the characters were one dimensional.
    The only bad thing I could ever say about your books is that they tend to spoil one for picking up something else to read! I find them so unique and I’ve yet to find another that creates as much depth of feeling, at least for this reader.
    By the way, once I’ve finished a book I enjoy I may treasure the memory, but I never reread. There is just too much out there to explore. Never reread, that is until being introduced to Diana Gabaldon.
    Thanks so much!

  50. Thank you Diana for writing the Outlander series. I love them so much, I have read them so many times over. Anyone can feel part of the story, and you cant wait to see what happens next.
    I have been waiting so long for the eighth book, you have no idea how happy I am to see its coming soon. And a TV series, awesome I cant wait to see it.

    Thank you from a very devoted fan.

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