Tuesday, August 24, 2010


So the reason that my favorite medical books have been on my mind recently is that, like I mentioned before, my editor has been sending out advance copies of my book for people to blurb. Early responses have been pretty good (no book burnings yet that I'm aware of, at least), and so I've been trying to put together a fantasy wish list of all the people I would love to take a peek at the manuscript before it comes out. Certainly if any of the authors on my top five list even leafed through my book (yes, I know Randy Shiltz died, but, you know, the alive ones), my head would explode with happiness, and it seems unbelievable to me that something I wrote might possibly be looked over by these authors whose works I've read and loved for years.

My editor feels like personal note tucked in with the advance copies might be that extra touch that adds so much (as opposed to a my-people-will-call-your-people sort of situation, I guess...not that I have people, but I'm sure the other authors do, because they are famous and also AWESOME) which is why I've been writing fan letters to Anne Fadiman and Atul Gawande. And also why I finally got some personal stationery. I have been writing notes on ripped out pieces of notebook paper for far too long, but now I am thirty-two years old, which seems like an age that having plain notecards with your name printed across the top might no longer be exceptional, but expected.


  1. how about blurbs from famous doctor bloggers? Not that I know any (apart from you)...

  2. Wooo! It is intimidating to write to people that you admire, especially from a professional standpoint. I imagine that I would approach Atul Gawande the same way I would approach John Adams and James Herriot and Brad Pitt, incomprehensible gibberish with occasional drooling. I hope that you are able to get decent people to write for your book jacket, and I am sure it will sell very well. We are all excited for it!!

    (If it doesn't, you can always use those extra copies to prop up the wobbly leg on the coffee table. =P)

  3. Anonymous7:38 AM

    book tour! book tour!

  4. Anonymous7:52 PM

    how exciting! i would be so nervous! BUT...how can they not love it, just as we all will?!

  5. Well, I figure even MacArthur Geniuses need something to read while they're in the bathroom. So why not make it a choice between me and Us Weekly? ("STARS! They're just like Us!")

  6. Yes, and they even have medical problems too! As a 2nd year med student, I shadowed a doctor who kept paper files in a separate room. He asked me to retrieve a file for a last name starting with C, and I came across "Cronkite, Walter". I was SOOO tempted to go in and look, but my guilt got the better of me and I didn't. A year later, CNN reported that he was very ill and he died not too soon after, so I felt really relieved that I didn't succumb to curiosity and probe into this well-respected journalist's life. It was a rare moment of willpower for me =P

  7. so i've read your blog forever and am just now commeting but I have to tell you that I met Atul Gawande when I went to his book signing for complications in Boston. I love him and i even asked to take a picture with him at the book signing- clearly i made him feel very awkward because he replied with "um..ok?" and then I felt really weird about it but it quickly faded because now, I HAVE PROOF I MET HIM!
    also i am a fellow pen nerd and i love your posts about that - my favorite pen is the pilot precise .5 - because I know you were interested. ok, i think that is enough crazy for a first time comment :)

  8. Anonymous5:15 AM

    Completely irrelevant comment time:
    I really really enjoy your handwriting. I have no idea why. I just really like it. xD