A rock n’ roll loving surgeon who writes for The New Yorker, Atul Gawande has a gift for describing both medical mishaps and awe-inspiring surgical techniques with authoritative ease. Gawande’s gift was recognized when his first collection of essays, Complications: A Surgeon's Notes on an Imperfect Science, was nominated for a 2002 National Book Award.
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In his interview with Barnes & Noble.com, Gawande described a shining memory: "I believe that one version of the good in life can be defined by the moments I sometimes had playing tennis as a sixteen-year-old," He recalled. "You’d be out on the court and for an hour, two hours, sometimes an entire roasting hot day, and every single thing you hit would go in. Hit that ball as hard as you wanted, wherever you wanted, and it went in. It was effortless power, achieved out of practice. But my game’s gone to hell. And I have not had a moment like that since high school."
A serious surgeon and writer by day, Gawande has been known to rock out. He told Barnes & Noble.com, "I have always believed that there is nothing greater than a life in rock n' roll -- it has to be good rock n' roll -- and I still think it is true."
Gawande claims not to have any one source of inspiration for his writing. I don’t write out of inspiration," he told us. "I write because it’s my way of finding cool ideas, thinking through hard problems and things I don’t understand, and getting better at something. I was never born to write. I was taught to write. And I am still being taught to write."