#AuthorInterview with @MaryAustinBooks #BookThe Last Summer Rose

About the Book

The Camera Aversion of Scientists

If you want to see a lab empty out like the place is on fire, get a camera.
Almost everybody who works in labs is camera shy. This can be a problem if
you’re in that large majority and land in a prominent lab where the university (or
even local media crews) might be around on a regular basis depending on what’s
been discovered. These poor guys, who are just trying to do their jobs, want to
film scientists doing science, but the problem is that almost all of the scientists
want to run away.

One postdoc I remember even hid in the lab’s “hot room” to avoid a news
crew. That’s the term for the room where all the radioactive materials are
stored— very safely, really; there’s little to no risk to going in that room despite its
off-putting appearance. The university’s radiation safety staff inspects those
rooms regularly, and nobody’s allowed in there without knowing what they’re
doing.

But the door has those giant radiation warning signs on it, and my
colleague correctly guessed that the camera people sure as hell wouldn’t follow
him there.

…That guy in the hot room stood around for almost an hour with nothing
to do, until he was sure the crew was gone. Having successfully avoided
appearing in the video, he went back to work and faced nothing but a bit of
ribbing from the rest of us.

About the Author

What inspired your story, The Last Rose of Summer?

It never should have been necessary to publish The Last Rose of Summer. The content should have been a scientific paper years ago. After years of efforts to see this discovery through the usual process of drug development in the US and several other countries, I finally had no choice but to go public. It will take several more books to describe everything I did and all the threats I faced.

Though this is a tragic tale, there is also hope within it. I have reason to believe that the clinical trials of the drug have been done in a developing country. To see the results, I had to commit to keeping this situation secret, which I would not do. Whatever they are, they’re apparently motive for murder.

Qn 1: Can you tell us more about your book What is it about?

The Last Rose of Summer 

While working independently as a pre-med student at Cleary University, the soon-to-be physician, Mary Austin, discovers a remarkable, non-toxic drug that could offer tremendous hope to cancer patients. Her work is headed for publication in a top medical journal until a drug company begins negotiations with her bosses from which she is mysteriously excluded.

Amid egregious sexual harassment, Mary’s materials are blatantly sabotaged. As death threats follow and her work becomes impossible, she is accepted at Whitehead College of Medicine despite evidence that her bosses tampered with her application process. After becoming a pediatrics resident, she shares her story with her beloved mentor, Dr. Daniel Taylor, who allows her to temporarily leave her residency training to reproduce the work. Her joy turns to sorrow and then determination when she learns that Dr. Taylor is battling terminal pancreatic cancer. Even as a chain of events prompts the sabotage of Mary’s drug stock and leaves her seemingly without any choice but to permanently leave academic medicine, the story of her drug is not over yet.

In this novel inspired by a true story, after a young cancer researcher discovers a breakthrough drug that could change chemotherapy, the drug industry suppresses the breakthrough and transforms her life and career forever.

Qn 2: Who do you think would be interested in this book, is it directed at any particular market?

The Last Rose of Summer 

While working independently as a pre-med student at Cleary University, the soon-to-be physician, Mary Austin, discovers a remarkable, non-toxic drug that could offer tremendous hope to cancer patients. Her work is headed for publication in a top medical journal until a drug company begins negotiations with her bosses from which she is mysteriously excluded.

Amid egregious sexual harassment, Mary’s materials are blatantly sabotaged. As death threats follow and her work becomes impossible, she is accepted at Whitehead College of Medicine despite evidence that her bosses tampered with her application process. After becoming a pediatrics resident, she shares her story with her beloved mentor, Dr. Daniel Taylor, who allows her to temporarily leave her residency training to reproduce the work. Her joy turns to sorrow and then determination when she learns that Dr. Taylor is battling terminal pancreatic cancer. Even as a chain of events prompts the sabotage of Mary’s drug stock and leaves her seemingly without any choice but to permanently leave academic medicine, the story of her drug is not over yet.

In this novel inspired by a true story, after a young cancer researcher discovers a breakthrough drug that could change chemotherapy, the drug industry suppresses the breakthrough and transforms her life and career forever.

Qn 3: Out of all the books in the world, and all the authors, which are your favourite and why?

Sir Terry Pratchett is hands down my favorite author; his genius and his passion for justice have held me captive since I was a teenager. I’m also a fan of Richard Feynman, whose gift for science writing impresses me now as never before in my life. You can’t truly appreciate the experts at science writing until you’ve agonized over it yourself. Even my love of Feynman’s humor now recedes before my awe at his gift for communicating science.

And I’m a big fan of Russian literature: Tolstoy, Turgenev, Dostoevsky, Nabokov. That surprises people sometimes, not (I hope) because they think I can’t read, but because people tend to assume that Russian literature only appeals to brooding, lugubrious types, and I’m pretty cheery. My explanation is that censorship of misery upsets me; confronting it draws me in. Poverty, suicide, child abuse, cruelty– nobody censors these issues out of people’s lives, so why censor them out of books?

Qn 4: What guidance would you offer to someone new, or trying to enhance their writing?

I’m no veteran author to dispense such wisdom at will, but I know this much: whatever you write about must matter intensely to you. Even before I had a subject more important than my career or safety, anything I wrote mattered to me. I wrote letters to public officials because I passionately supported a cause; I wrote satire because I knew people badly needed a laugh; I defended my friends’ blogs from trolls out of genuine, seething disgust at cyberbullying. I wrote poems I had no intention of showing anyone because I was really in love.

Whatever you’re writing, it’s got to matter so much that you would write it for no money or recognition at all.

Qn 5: Where can our readers find out more about you, do you have a website, or a way to be contacted?

https://maryaustinbooks.com/

https://www.facebook.com/MaryAustinBooks

https://www.linkedin.com/company/maryaustin/

https://www.instagram.com/MaryAustinBooks/

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