Q&A: Harry Kraus, M.D.
Dr. Tori Taylor is a lot of things. She's driven, talented, brilliant, and respected. What she isn't is nice. That is, until she had a change of heart - literally. Dr. Taylor needed a heart transplant but she got way more than she expected.
WHAT WERE YOUR GOALS WRITING A HEARTBEAT AWAY?
My first goal is to write a great story, something that will grab readers, allow an emotional link between the reader and protagonist and then give the reader hope as the protagonist faces difficulty and eventually overcomes. The idea is that the reader will also consider, "if she did it (after encountering grace), maybe I can trust God in my circumstances, too."
HOW DO YOU CHOOSE WHICH STORY TO WRITE?
I just know it when it hits me. Sometimes I'm just researching a fun topic, such as cellular memory. Sometimes I just hear about an interesting medical conflict or development. Sometimes, I've just been noodling on an idea (central conflict) for some time and after some sort of pregnancy, a new story is ready for birthing.
WHAT ARE SOME EXAMPLES FROM THE STORY WHERE YOU DREW ELEMENTS FROM REAL LIFE?
OK, you'll think this is strange, but the story of Tori acting like a real jerk to someone in housekeeping was taken from true life. Tori asked someone in housekeeping to move a bedpan full of stool so that her team could make rounds without distraction. The custodian refused, saying "that's not in my job description." This prompted Tori to ask, "Just what is your job description?" When the custodian said, "I clean the floors," Tori dumped the contents of the bedpan on the floor and said, "now it's in your job description." That really happened in the university hospital where I trained! (Names changed to protect the guilty!)
IN YOUR NEW NOVEL, WHO IS THE CHARACTER IN THIS STORY WHO SURPRISED YOU MOST?
I think Tori acts in the most surprising way, because she changes so much throughout the course of the novel, acting one way before the heart transplant and another way after!
WHAT PROJECTS ARE YOU WORKING ON NOW?
I am writing a fun story about a woman who is working on the development of an artificial blood (something predicted to be worth 10 billion annually in US sales alone).