I've been thinking about the whole "write what you know" concept. Sure, that's great. But what if the stuff you "know" really shouldn't ever be made into a novel? Like, ever?
In my first novel, my heroine is an ER doctor. Cool. I've done that job, so that's writing about something I know. (And NO Allison is not me, because I'm not that skinny, tormented, awesome, and I don't want kids. So there.)
There are a lot of visceral injuries throughout all of my novels because apparently I'm not "well-adjusted" or have "suppressed feelings" or something all psychological like that. (You work in rural ER's, you'll see about a thousand bizarre ways the human body can be broken, mangled, and destroyed. After duct taping that mess back together, crying, praying or hosing yourself off, it occurs -- that's good fodder for writing!)
My upcoming 3rd book features a kick-ass nurse as a heroine, so again, there's that medical aspect of verisimilitude in the novels. Ok, fine, none of the nurses I know are actually 150 years old, but I enjoy researching the history of medicine, so there's that.
The good news? I love lists!
Ten reasons why Dr. Jill thinks you should get your colonoscopy.
#1) If you have any GI symptoms, please don't chalk it up to "nothing". Let your doctor know about it. This 42 y/o guy today? TWO+ YEARS OF RECTAL BLEEDING? Damn it, you want to know what I saw when I got 5 cm into his rectum? Let's just say the mass was bleeding and fungating. When I mutter "crap" during a case, it has nothing to do with poopy. If he had come in shortly after the bleeding started, this would have been a simple polypectomy. Now it's chemotherapy + a colon resection + possible metastases + …..? What a raw deal.
#2) It'll make your parents/family/boyfriend/girlfriend happier knowing that you're healthy. They don't want to worry about you. Why put them through the worry?
#3) All the cool kids are doing it.
#4) Propofol gives you the best nap of your life. Ever. And sometimes Propofol produces sexual fantasy dreams. For real. Patients have told me STORIES. Note to writers: a colonoscopy could lead to inspiration and narrative breakthrough! (Better than binge-watching Lost….)
Those comments might demonstrate my rather plebeian upbringing, but bear with me.
#1) Groups of ladies going out. They all are dressed the same. (dress/mini and wedges and same exact hairdo) Kind of strange.
#2) Back fat is apparently something to be very proud of. And flaunt.
#3) Back hair is apparently something to be very proud of. And flaunt. (dude, please, just…a shirt, that's all I ask)
#4) Trucks with mostly naked people depicted on them, driving up and down the strip. Marketing must work, or they wouldn't be clogging up 6 lanes of traffic with these rolling, gas-guzzling billboards.
So as an author, I kind of fell in love with the hero, Peter Blackstone, from my first novel Immortal Flame. "Who wouldn't" (based on a great review, thanks, ESR Reviews!) fall in love with him?
For the record, I am happily married to a sweet and funny guy. So anything I share presumes a non-martial status prior to aforementioned dating situation….
Here's why I would date Peter Blackstone:
#1) Such intense eyes
#2) Sacrifice for a woman he loves (twice)
#3) Single-minded focus on his work, which becomes single-minded focus on the woman he loves. Yum.
#4) Hard, corded muscles ("I hate nice, toned muscles," said no red-blooded woman, ever.)
#5) That sensitive spot he has for children
#6) He's protective and powerful but recognizes Allie's own strengths
#7) Amazing, mind-blowing, powerful…conversation. Yeah. Please pass the ice water.
#8) Even when he's hurting (physically or emotionally), he keeps fighting for his woman
#9) Rises above the evil that defines him to become something much more
#10) Ok, I secretly wish I were Allie. (Darn it, I'm just not that awesome and cool.)
Please feel free to add any other reasons of your own. :)
I couldn't stop with the first list. I kept thinking of more...
#1) "Double header" = I use this term when doing both an upper GI endoscopy along with a colonoscopy. (Don't worry, we use different scopes!) The scopes are often referred to as "roto-rooters". (In some places, the GI docs are called "roto-rooters" -- it's probably a regional vernacular difference.)
#2) "Donorcycle" = Trauma patients who were riding a motorcycle when they had the accident. Sometimes these patients are described as "ART", assuming room temperature….
#3) "BOHICA" = Also not necessarily medical, but Bend Over Here It Comes Again describes many ER shifts. Many cluster-f$%#s in the office, on an Ob call shift. Anything.
#4) "Vaginal bypass" = C-section
#5) "CNS-QNS" = Central Nervous System - Quantity Not Sufficient. I use this term to describe bone-headed 21 year old males who rode on Donorcycles.
Ok, I'm about to spill secrets. Keys to the kingdom. Pull the curtain aside to reveal the wizard.
May I humbly present: abbreviations/slang terms I have used in training/practice for the past 15 years. Otherwise known as reason #2461 why I am going to hell.
Disclaimer full of way too much honesty: I enjoy taking care of (nearly all of) my patients. The work is (exhausting) rewarding. But sometimes docs have to insulate themselves from the boatloads of >crazy< and frustration and quite frankly, keep from going down the black hole of sadness that sometimes comes with the territory. And no, I'm not depressed, not in the least. But this warped sense of humor is what keeps me from reaching for zoloft….
#1) "Calorie overdose" = Mentioned in an irreverent dictation by a colleague who was up to his eyeballs in obese patients. I think my buddy finally cracked. He also got a reprimand for writing that phrase. Come on, everyone knows you never EVER put this stuff on paper.
#2) "Facultative anaerobe" = Patients who survive in a low-oxygen environment. Often seen in little old 3 pack/day smokers who believe that their end-stage COPD requiring 4 liters of O2 has "absolutely nothing" to do with their tobacco use. Often as O2 levels drop, confusion increases, as does levels of denial and general blame of the doctor not being able to fix the breathing problem.
With the exception of, I believe, San Diego, all of the US has snow on the ground right now. So we're all in the same boat, with no chance of warming in sight.
Thus I've compiled a list of things to do while waiting for spring (summer, for some of you) when the snow melts.
#1) Ok, the obvious. Get busy…reading books. (What else?)
#2) Figure out how to make a meal out of a 10 year old box of Bisquick, a can of Campbell's tomato soup, and freezer-burnt raspberries from 1989. And now the power just shut off. Go.
#3) Weather channel on eternal radar loop + Zoloft + beverage of choice. (To be fair, I don't endorse antidepressants + alcohol, so let's just make that an either/or scenario so I don't get sued for bad advice.)
#4) Dig out driveway or dig out car. Repeat. Cry. Repeat. Cry.
#5) Feel sorry for dogs that have to go outside. Dig out dog. Dig out spot on ground for dog to piddle.
#6) Winter luvin' appears to be the answer for all of my pregnant patients. However, it would appear that condoms turn to ice and break in winter. (Or perhaps the fingers putting the condom on are just way too chilly.) Regardless, there is zero use of contraception when snowbound.
#7) Think about Jason Momoa. In Hawaii. On the beach. Shirtless...
Just got back from a medical conference in Florida (had to stare at the beach while in meetings all day >sigh<), and I couldn't help it -- my head started to compare this conference to romance writers conferences. Granted this was a conference targeted toward a mix of all specialties and some of the topics trended toward second career/post-retirement/transitional work. So, it's a skewed age group maybe, but there you go.
Romance conference = full age spread (20-80) and 90% female (scents of nice perfume)
Medical conference = age spread 40 up to 75 and 70% male (scents of old spice and ben gay)
Medical conference = acronyms for research studies promoting treatments that reduce morbidity
Romance conference = acronyms for "parts that go into parts" (m to v, v to p, etc.) promoting heaving bosoms and rapid breathing
Apparently, the 20 previous items I wrote about weren't enough. I've encountered even more things that drive me nuts about airports on my recent travels.
#1) Coughing. Without covering your mouth. For 1200 miles. Thank you, I expect to convert my next TB test to a positive result. Fabulous.
#2) Screaming…. wait for it ….. CATS? Apparently, pet sitters, cat hotels, or boarding are not adequate for these two mangy princesses. They are carried on, terrified, and wailing, for 1200 miles. Non stop meowing. I love my kitties, but I cannot take nails on the chalkboard sounds for 2.5 hours.
#3) People talking on the phone loudly in public. I know this item is a repeat, but it still drives me nuts. For the love of all that is holy, I don't need to hear about how "Bob is going to freak when HR tells him, that's BS, blah blah blah". Ok, if you're brokering a merger of, say, Apple and Microsoft, then fine, I'll spot you that one. You can talk loudly on the phone in public. Because that's pretty freakin' amazing. Anyone else? A little respect for those of us quietly reading our Kindles and wishing we were sitting on our couch at home. In silence.
Yup, procrastinating editing book #2 Relentless Flame again. So here's the result of this "idle mind"…
Super Bowl = Romance Novels
1) Tight buns (and we're not talking hairdos)
2) Glistening, rippling muscles
3) Leggy women watching with hitches of breaths, bosoms heaving and hearts thudding.
4) Secret codes and safe words (you'll never think about "omaha" the same way again….)
5) Gasping for breath, frequently
Super Bowl ≠ Romance Novels
1) No hero smells like a funky-sweat locker room in a romance novel. Ever. Guarantee there's no "sexy musk" down on that field.
2) In romance novels sometimes the women play football. Really well. And always get the guy.
3) Does not require tackling to defend someone's honor.
4) Secret codes for plays. Look, all you need is an ex-Navy Seal hero to get everyone to safety. Duh.
5) Creepy big brother type with a headset dictating who does what. (Ok, maybe in some BDSM's that's legit. My bad.)
Author, daydreamer, and practitioner of trying very hard to duct tape folks together and help when I can.
October 2023 July 2023 June 2023 April 2023 December 2022 September 2022 August 2022 June 2022 May 2022 February 2022 January 2021 November 2020 August 2020 July 2020 May 2020 January 2020 November 2019 September 2019 August 2019 July 2019 March 2019 November 2018 October 2018 September 2018 July 2018 June 2018 May 2018 April 2018 March 2018 January 2018 December 2017 November 2017 October 2017 September 2017 August 2017 July 2017 May 2017 April 2017 March 2017 February 2017 January 2017 December 2016 November 2016 October 2016 September 2016 August 2016 July 2016 June 2016 May 2016 April 2016 March 2016 February 2016 January 2016 December 2015 November 2015 October 2015 September 2015 August 2015 July 2015 June 2015 May 2015 April 2015 March 2015 February 2015 January 2015 December 2014 November 2014 October 2014 September 2014 August 2014 July 2014 June 2014
All Adventures With Hubby Airports Author Interviews Cats Fastdrafting Funny Medicine Hell's Valley Series Hell To Pay Series Medicine Potpourri Star Trek Top 10 Lists Writing Writing Vs Medicine