Faculty member C. Dale Young was interviewed by Lightbox Poetry about being a doctor, the process of writing poetry, and other topics:
How do you balance the actual logistical, as well as the spiritual or emotional, work of being a poet and being a full-time medical doctor?
I am not sure I ever feel as if I balance the work of being a poet and a physician. I do wake at 5:25 AM most weekday mornings to get a few writing-related things done before I head off to the hospital. I am not usually home until early evening. By then, I am often too tired to read or write. Most of my writing, when it does happen, is on weekends, or the occasional Wednesday I have as an admin day for my Practice. Considering the fact I typically finish roughly four poems a year, one could argue there is little balance in my life between these two endeavors. Last year (2014), I only finished two poems. I have to admit though, that I also write fiction in addition to poetry, so a fairly sizable chunk of my writing time over the past seven years has been devoted to that.
My field of practice in medicine is Radiation Oncology. Oncology can be a very difficult field, filled with an unbelievable amount of emotion. I tend to reserve most of my stability and humanity for my job as an Oncologist, the job where I am face to face with people. I guess the reality is that I spend the vast majority of my time being a physician. I often need things like this interview to remind me I am a writer at all.
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