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    (Original post by maxpemberton)
    hi,
    just stumbled across this forum and noticed that my book was getting a mention - i'm really sorry if it's scared some of you about doing medicine - that wasn't my intention. Really, don't let it put you off - i'm not pretending your first few years as a doctor isn't tough - it is - but it's incredibly rewarding and i hope that this does come across in the book. don't let the grim bits obscure the underlying message that being a doctor is an incredible privilege and a fascinating career. Good luck with your UCAS applications :yes:
    There's a couple of books about Junior Doctors now. Are you thinking of bringing out a sequel from a more senior position someday (it would be a good read, I'm sure)?
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    [QUOTE=maxpemberton]
    (Original post by lotusx)
    every time i read that book, i get scared. good to know someone else does as well!

    hi,
    just stumbled across this forum and noticed that my book was getting a mention - i'm really sorry if it's scared some of you about doing medicine - that wasn't my intention. Really, don't let it put you off - i'm not pretending your first few years as a doctor isn't tough - it is - but it's incredibly rewarding and i hope that this does come across in the book. don't let the grim bits obscure the underlying message that being a doctor is an incredible privilege and a fascinating career. Good luck with your UCAS applications :yes:
    Serious question. How did you balance time to write a book and be a doctor at the same time?
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    yes i'm currently writing another book - due in to my publishers first week of january and so desperately trying to finish it now.

    with regard to how did i write a book and work as a doctor... it was *really* hard! i don't have a TV, which does give you more time in your life, but for about 3 months i dind't go out or see anyone, it was horrible! the hospital where i work were very kind and gave me some time off as study leave to try and break the back of the writing, although writing a book takes a long time so i still had many very late nights bent over my laptop tapping away. i also write a column for a newspaper every week and that has been the hardest thing to balance with working as a doctor though as it's been every week for 6 years - you have to be very organised as i'm often on-call, working late or have other commitments on the same day i have to write. it helps to not need much sleep!
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    (Original post by maxpemberton)
    yes i'm currently writing another book - due in to my publishers first week of january and so desperately trying to finish it now.

    with regard to how did i write a book and work as a doctor... it was *really* hard! i don't have a TV, which does give you more time in your life, but for about 3 months i dind't go out or see anyone, it was horrible! the hospital where i work were very kind and gave me some time off as study leave to try and break the back of the writing, although writing a book takes a long time so i still had many very late nights bent over my laptop tapping away. i also write a column for a newspaper every week and that has been the hardest thing to balance with working as a doctor though as it's been every week for 6 years - you have to be very organised as i'm often on-call, working late or have other commitments on the same day i have to write. it helps to not need much sleep!
    Just as I thought! :eek:

    On the bright side, I have possibly 6 years of med school to finish my book(s) off. In your opinion Max, does med school give you time enough to write a book (while staying on top of you work).

    And did you publish directly, or did you do it through a literary agent?
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    (Original post by maxpemberton)
    yes i'm currently writing another book - due in to my publishers first week of january and so desperately trying to finish it now.

    with regard to how did i write a book and work as a doctor... it was *really* hard! i don't have a TV, which does give you more time in your life, but for about 3 months i dind't go out or see anyone, it was horrible! the hospital where i work were very kind and gave me some time off as study leave to try and break the back of the writing, although writing a book takes a long time so i still had many very late nights bent over my laptop tapping away. i also write a column for a newspaper every week and that has been the hardest thing to balance with working as a doctor though as it's been every week for 6 years - you have to be very organised as i'm often on-call, working late or have other commitments on the same day i have to write. it helps to not need much sleep!
    May I ask what Med School you went too? And where you did your FY1 & 2 years?
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    erm, well, i tried to write a book at medical school but never really managed it - i needed the pressure of a publisher's deadline before i actually sat down with any real focus and wrote. Yes, i do have an agent - it's incredibly difficult to get published (certainly with a large publisher at any rate) without one. if you think being a doctor is hard, trust me, publishing a book without an agent is far harder! - my publishers have literally hundreds of unsolicited manuscripts lining their corridors - none are read, they are all just either returned or shredded. I was lucky because of writing for the telegraph - both publishers and agents contacted me directly - i didn't have to do anything really - i picked an agent after a few months of writing my column (this was in my very first year of being a JD) and then she sorted out a book deal (which is actually for 3 books in total).

    i'd say that by all means try and write a book while at medical school - there is plenty of time if you're organised (and in the first 3 years, lots of holiday time) - but make sure the writing isn't to the detriment of medical school. i think it's far better to be a doctor who writes than a writer who was once a medical student but got kicked out
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    sorry, i'm a bit of a ludite and not very good at this internet forum malarky - just seen that someone else has asked a question so having to post again - i went to UCL (the best!!!!) and did my JD year (we didn't do FY1 etc in my day!) in london and edinburgh - for a smooth narrative i kept it in the same hospital for the book, but this wasn't the case in real life.
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    (Original post by maxpemberton)
    sorry, i'm a bit of a ludite and not very good at this internet forum malarky - just seen that someone else has asked a question so having to post again - i went to UCL (the best!!!!) and did my JD year (we didn't do FY1 etc in my day!) in london and edinburgh - for a smooth narrative i kept it in the same hospital for the book, but this wasn't the case in real life.
    Awesome! I want to go to UCL as well.

    Actually a UCL alumn I spoke to (he's an SHO now). Said he was part of the back up band for Coldplay! So any experiences like that in UCL?

    EDIT: Moar questions! :p:

    Umm...One of the reasons I applied to UCL was because of it's great english dept. Is it possible to "leverage" this as a Med. student?

    Also any good creative writing societies in UCL? And in your opinion are they useful (if they exist?)
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    (Original post by maxpemberton)
    sorry, i'm a bit of a ludite and not very good at this internet forum malarky - just seen that someone else has asked a question so having to post again - i went to UCL (the best!!!!) and did my JD year (we didn't do FY1 etc in my day!) in london and edinburgh - for a smooth narrative i kept it in the same hospital for the book, but this wasn't the case in real life.
    Ha! You'll get used to it after a while, don't worry!
    UCL - the best?! Well, I'm sure there'll be quite a few debates on that! :p:
    Sorry for the persistent questions, but may I ask where you applied?
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    (Original post by maxpemberton)
    erm, well, i tried to write a book at medical school but never really managed it - i needed the pressure of a publisher's deadline before i actually sat down with any real focus and wrote. Yes, i do have an agent - it's incredibly difficult to get published (certainly with a large publisher at any rate) without one. if you think being a doctor is hard, trust me, publishing a book without an agent is far harder! - my publishers have literally hundreds of unsolicited manuscripts lining their corridors - none are read, they are all just either returned or shredded. I was lucky because of writing for the telegraph - both publishers and agents contacted me directly - i didn't have to do anything really - i picked an agent after a few months of writing my column (this was in my very first year of being a JD) and then she sorted out a book deal (which is actually for 3 books in total).

    i'd say that by all means try and write a book while at medical school - there is plenty of time if you're organised (and in the first 3 years, lots of holiday time) - but make sure the writing isn't to the detriment of medical school. i think it's far better to be a doctor who writes than a writer who was once a medical student but got kicked out
    I know you're being bombarded with questions at the moment, but something I've always been curious about - how does a JD end up writing for a newspaper (there have been a couple of instances now)? Do you send off an example of what you could write to each newspaper, or are newspapers actively recruiting for Doctor columnists?
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    i did an intercalated degree in anthropology while at UCL - was very useful for writing as medicine is not really an essay subject - and i also informally sat in on 2 years of the english degree (i bunked off medical school - not good, i know, but i loved english so much i couldn't help myself).
    i applied to UCL (this was my first choice, but when i applied, there was no facility to state this, so i wrote to them directly and told them - when i turned up for interview, they were really pleased i'd written and i'm sure this is why they offered me a place)
    also applied to Guys and st thomas's (offered a place), liverpool (offered a place), manchester (rejected without interview) and sheffield (rejected without an interview)

    well, i thought UCL was the best because i depserately wanted to go to london (best hospitals, great night life, theatre etc) and wanted to be in the very centre, have opportunities to do other things such as anthropology, english, art etc at Uni, and UCL fitted the bill. i would recommend it, but it's personal choice really - different people want different things from a medical school.... i would say though, that you're going to be there for 6 years, so make sure that the city you go to can hold your interest for all that time.. friends i had who went to smaller cities/towns, such as St Andrews and even places like manchester, felt that they'd 'done' what the city had to offer after a few years, but were then stuck there for the duration of their medical degree. others though loved being in an environment where everyone knew everyone else, they had routine, liked going out to the same places, hated the hectic nature of the capital etc.
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    to answer your question jonny - as far as i know there have been two of us - me and michael foxton in the guardian (a few years before i started). i wrote a piece about getting my column which should answer this in more depth... can't work out how to post a link, but if you go to the telegraph website and put in the search 'max pemberton couldn't have survived without you' you'll see the article (it's the third one down on the search results i think - dated 14/02/08)

    i suppose the key thing to realise is that a national newspaper doesn't just give a random person a column (my current editor gets around 100 emails a week from would-be columnists). i'd been working in journalism since my first year at medical school, so by the time i contacted the telegraph, already had 5 years of writing behind me. i think that getting into journalism is infinitely more competitive than medicine!
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    I think that when i said "scared", i meant it in a...'my god, will i be able to cope with this!' kind of way. but then, the challenge is part of the reason i want to do medicine. it's helpful to have a book like that because no matter how much work experience you do, shadowing a junior doctor is obviously not the same as being one; and it makes it more realistic. i would love to write whilst in medical school/being a doctor, but that's a long way away yet!
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    is it just me who always dreamed of being a doctor by day, rockstar by night?
    :p:

    similar to Hannah Montanna in her Disney show (how sad that i know of that :p: ), only, I'd actually sing/make good songs!!

    EDIT: Just noticed I might have a problem when I have night shifts
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    (Original post by Medicine Man)
    is it just me who always dreamed of being a doctor by day, rockstar by night?
    :p:

    similar to Hannah Montanna in her Disney show (how sad that i know of that :p: ), only, I'd actually sing/make good songs!!
    A bit like these guys? http://www.thestudentroom.co.uk/showthread.php?t=754421
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    (Original post by Myoclonic Jerk)
    A bit like these guys? http://www.thestudentroom.co.uk/showthread.php?t=754421
    lol
    i can only dream though!:p:
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    Medicine, medicine, medicine - the stress of it all, eh?
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    max, what do you do now? Do you still treat patients and what speciality did you choose to go into and why? Is med school really as hard as the outsiders make it to be and what was med school like in general?
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    i agree with lotusx - the book was definitely helpful and a welcome change to the tv dramas whcih give a medicine a false name. the thought of being a junior doctor really scares but i suppose it's just something we have to get through
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    Has anyone read NHS plc? I've bought it and will soon read at (after retakes lol). What did you make of it?
 
 
 
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