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The Headmaster's Wager
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Book Chats > THE HEADMASTER'S WAGER by Vincent Lam

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Read It Forward | 97 comments Mod
Vincent Lam has a great backstory. It was while working as a doctor aboard an Arctic cruise that Lam had a chance encounter with renowned author Margaret Atwood. She agreed to read his short stories, and later sent him an email announcing “Congratulations. You can write.” Atwood mentored the young author, and was instrumental in bringing Lam to his publisher, Doubleday Canada.

What do you think of authors - especially novelists - who have full careers in another field? We're thinking of Ethan Canin (also a doctor) - do you know of any others? How do you think having another life outside of writing affects their craft?

Enjoy Vincent Lam's Read It Forward essay on his debut novel The Headmaster's Wager.


message 2: by Beth (new)

Beth  (techeditor) | 57 comments I can think of many other authors I've read who have Or had if they're dead now) careers in another field: Vincent Bugliosi,Jeffrey Archer, David Abbott, Cleveland Amory, Robert Dugoni, Temple Grandin, Alan Lazar, Frank McCourt, Vicki Myron, Oliver North, Wayne Pacelle, Abraham Verghese, Lis Wheil. With only two or three exceptions, they wrote very good books. Obviously, then, they balance two careers well.


Read It Forward | 97 comments Mod
Wow, Beth, that's quite a list! Thanks so much for sharing. I agree with you that they balance two careers well. Their life and work and books are of a piece.


message 4: by Linda (new)

Linda Tayrien | 5 comments Scott Turow, John Grisham, Mary Higgins Clark Joseph Wambaugh just to name a few. And wasn't Michael Crichton a doctor? As my journalism prof said: Write what you know. It makes their books more realistic, because they understand the genres they are writing about. I always look at the jacket covers to see what they also do (if i haven't read them before).


Read It Forward | 97 comments Mod
Linda wrote: "I always look at the jacket covers to see what they also do (if i haven't read them before)."

Linda, I always do this too! Thanks for sharing a great list.


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