Richard trained in medicine at London hospitals, specialising in respiratory and critical care medicine. Motivated to find new treatments he moved into research, obtained a PhD in medical sciences at University College London and has published widely in scientific journals. His move to drug discovery supported his on going aspiration to find new medicines, and he now he leads a research team trying to find new drugs for severe lung, liver and kidney disease.
Writing for Richard has always been a strong part of both his working and private life, with his skills originally honed writing medical texts and journal papers. Antisense is his first novel, combining literary themes with a thriller’s pace, whilst drawing upon his experience both as a Doctor of Science and of Medicine.
“It’s surprising to me that so little literature has a medical or scientific basis. As a Doctor, one sees all aspects of the human condition, and from a unique perspective. And the overall goal of medical science is to understand how we tick, so together they provide an incredibly rich seam for fiction. There are so many good starting points for novels it’s difficult to know where to begin!”
“Antisense isn’t the first novel I’ve written, but it’s the first anyone is going to read! Let’s just say there is always a learning curve, and I have spent the past few years trying to perfect my skills as a writer (hopefully to a high standard) whilst pursuing a career in medical research, which I’m equally passionate about.”
“I started writing for two reasons. Firstly, I really felt my experience as a doctor and scientist was a fantastic source of literary ideas beyond the more typical medical thriller, which usually involves a murder and a lot of forensic sleuthing. Second was the scientific theory that forms the basis for Antisense. Everyone is supposed to have a novel in them, and I knew this was mine. What I wasn’t prepared for was the hard work required to find the style and quality of prose I wanted to achieve, though I’ll let others be the judge of how successful I’ve been. I also didn’t anticipate how ‘organic’ writing could be. Some people start a book knowing every detail of what’s going to happen, but that wasn’t the case with Antisense. I started in one place and then the characters and story begin to lead me. It’s something you have to let happen, yet remain in control of, which can be exhausting.”
Learn about the science behind Antisense