Happy New Year!
This year is off to a lovely start, having just been up to Edinburgh to speak at the Royal College of Physicians as part of their lecture series. The RCPE lecture series is a truly incredible honour and they have fantastic talks coming up as well for those who are interested in the medical humanities. My talk was on alienation and beauty in early medical photography and we had such a varied audience, and some really great questions on where our beauty standards come from and the future of hybrid photography in medical education. The talk itself is being polished up for publication and I will provide new information on that as soon as I have it.
I am also starting this year off married! It is very exciting and I noticed for women, it also brings that strange challenge of one’s surname. As an academic, I am inclined to keep my old surname because I have published under that name and I completed my PhD under that name, but as an individual, I want to change my name. Ultimately who I am as an individual won out over making life easy for anyone following my research, and for that inconvenience I am sorry. I have made sure this change is clear in my publications. If any academics have advice on making this name transition, please let me know!
This is also a year of a new website and some changes. I love my work and I love being a freelance writer, but my heart has always been with children’s books. Growing up, I did volunteer work at the local pre-school, I would read books and help out in the classroom. During my PhD I taught with The Brilliant Club and got to know students aged 8-14. Then, after my PhD, life threw me a curve and I spent two years in California working at a bookstore running classes and offering a book matching service for kids, and then at Bay Area Discovery Museum for kids 0-8. It made me sure of something I have always toyed with: I want to write children’s books. I have been working on picture books and a few other small things and this is the year I will take a leap and send them off to literary agents. My heart is here and I won’t give up!
Finally, I would like to say that I have a few open slots in May/June for talks and lectures, I also love visiting schools to speak about college essays, something that was a large part of my experience working with The Brilliant Club as a PhD student.
See you in the spring!