The Ram Boutique: Author Interview – Daniel Gregory
We have had so much pleasure in featuring Daniel Gregory as our Highlighted Author this month for his unique style and approach to scientific literature. His voice is unlike anything you’ve heard. Cosmos to Consciousness is a great example of his talents. We hope you enjoy the insight Daniel has provided in the following interview, enjoy!
Who are you as a person: where are you from, what do you do, what are you doing?
It all began 3 score and too many years ago during an early winter blizzard that blasted through the Canadian border of upstate New York. I have been told that being born that night was my first tough challenge in life! At the age of 10, my beloved and wise mother counseled that if I ever wanted to amount to anything in this life, it would have to come from within, as her resources were sparse. She taught me that knowledge was power and education was the path to knowledge. This set the stage for my childhood priorities to work as a deckhand on the St Lawrence River excursion boats and eventually take the Coast Guard exam to become a licensed river captain. During those formative years I worked my way through Hamilton College and the University of Virginia School of Medicine. Today, after a half century and fulfilling career in clinical-academic medicine, this is who I am.
Last year, I retired from the discipline of medicine and resumed my full time life’s work as husband, father and grandfather. Now, I am free to schedule my own priorities for family, friends cycling, boating, new challenges and adventures. Truly, it is an empowering sensation to seize such a transforming life moment and boldly ignite a lifelong passion to explore the world of creative writing.
Your background as a writer?
The fertile seeds of writing and reading were implanted within my DNA through the influence of childhood role models and the valued structure of a liberal arts education as preparation for the disciplined curriculum of medical science. Tenacious literary threads weaved their way through my fifty years of a productive professional career as physician, teacher, clinical research scientist, publisher, editor of medical texts and various administrative healthcare responsibilities. The respect of peer feedback and recognition was always gratifying and self – sustaining.
I learned though this process that one does not acquire knowledge nor write without a devotion to reading. Simply stated, this formula blended within an environment of peer respect, builds confidence in the significance of honoring the written word. Such is the value of our unique being as writers.
Today, the challenge before me is to bridge the gap between writing within the limitations of science, while at the same time, exploring the freedom of self expression implicated within the universe of creative literature.
Where did the idea for this piece come from/how do you get inspired to write?
I have been blessed with a curious mind that has been cultivated by those about me through every stage of my life with experience and stature in various disciplines of knowledge ranging from literature, philosophy, religion, cosmology, transplant surgery and endoscopic nanotechnology. All were intermingled with adventures of trans-ocean sailing. As a result, I have been fully engaged with the world about me and have had the opportunity to participate in perpetual dialogues that have permitted me to explore the depth and expand the limits of my humanity. Such inspirational incubators of life have allowed me to ponder the big questions, such as the energy source of the “Big Bang”, the origin of life and the big, big question of human consciousness. The opening paragraph of “Cosmos to Consciousness” reveals inspirational insight for writing this essay.
Your ideal time and place to write?
By nature, I am a spontaneously creative writer without need for the confining structure of time or place. I abide by the premise that sleep refreshes and charges the human brain in preparation for an energetic awakening. At such moments my mind is most clear, creative thoughts emerge and golden words flow with ease.
Why do you write?
I cannot imagine how the human story of an individual being or our collective species could be revealed without the power of the written word.