- What do you carry in your pockets?
Well day to day I’m in my blue dress uniform a lot, so I don’t try to put anything in those pockets besides a pair of keys and a thin wallet. When I’m in the field there’s always some piece of equipment or a rifle magazine or something, usually a map.
- Do you ever have concerns that when you’re defending America, you’re defending good and bad people and ideas you may not agree with?
Honestly, no. My oath binds me against all enemies foreign and domestic, and if I end up defending say, a pedophile, it’s only from external threats. He’d still have to deal with the law, and I won’t defend him against that. That’s what lawyers are for. No, my oath does not come with caveats,
- What is your strongest quality?
I’m tenacious. There’s a part of recruit training where you run into this circular arena and pummel a fellow recruit with a padded stick. When I joined the Corps, I made it to this particular training but I was really tired from the previous evolution, and I got into the arena second. The other guy was waiting for me, and believe me, he laid into me good and hard. I ended up on the ground but I kept blocking his blows, and eventually made it back to my feet and pushed him up against the wall and ended up bloodying his face pretty hard. I got a good chewing out for that, since we weren’t supposed to knock each others headgear off, but like I said, I’m tenacious. It just sort of happened, and I was in the moment and just kept going at him.
- Of all the places you’ve been in the Marines, where would you like to revisit?
Well that depends, am I visiting for a deployment or a vacation? I always liked the views over the ocean when I was deployed aboard the amphibious carriers, so I think a sailboat trip would be nice. There are also some places in California and Colorado I’d like to visit, and my wife and I would like to take a trip to Europe some day, maybe.
- What are your most important values?
Duty, honor, country. I know it sounds canned and stereotypical, but its true. Some people would put family in there, and I get that, I love my family more than anything and anyone but God. But I have a duty to God and family and the Constitution, so if I always keep duty foremost in my mind, I’ll take care of all three while preserving my honor and defending my country. It comes down to a balancing act.
- What has your cancer diagnosis revealed to you about yourself?
Um, well, it’s been just a week, so … ah. Well, like I said, I’m tenacious. I know I’m going to beat this, despite the odds against me. I guess I’ll find out soon enough.
Happy birthday to you
Happy birthday to you
Happy birthday Scott Philipson*
Happy birthday to you
It’s Scott’s birthday, but you get the presents. Today only, the Kindle edition of The Dragonslayers Volume 1 is available for free at Amazon. Go download it, then go tell your friends!
- Why did you become a doctor, and why did you choose oncology?
I learned early on that I had a knack for making people feel better. I don’t want to say it was destiny, because I’m not sure I believe in that, but I never really seriously considered any other career field. Oncology because … reasons.
- What is the most difficult thing you’ve ever had to face in your professional career?
There was a colleague, Michael Shensen. He’d spent fifteen years or so in medicine as an oncologist, and was something of a mentor – no, he was my mentor, for a very long time. Dealt with pediatric oncology, which is by far the most emotionally brutal thing you can do in medicine. Anyway, he learned he had liver cancer. Stage IV. Missed all the warning signs because you’re taught as a doctor to not diagnose yourself or your family members, and he missed it. [wipes away a tear] Anyway, he put a bullet in his head the day after he got the diagnosis.
I can’t imagine how difficult that must have been, to see your teacher end his tutelage so abruptly.
I won’t lie, it was tough. Definitely the most difficult thing I’ve ever seen.
- What does a typical day look like to you?
Start too early, drink too much coffee, paperwork, more paperwork. Rounds with the med school students, more paperwork. Lunch gets squeezed in there somewhere, usually right about the time I’m working on my research. More paperwork, then rounds with the residents. Paperwork, at least one meeting with a patient per day, more usually two or three, then dinner with a side of paperwork, and eventually bed.
- What do you want for your patients more than anything else (except healing from their cancers)?
That their family relationships be restored. A lot of times cancer takes an emotional toll on the families and friends that is greater than the emotional toll on the patient. Often the patient resolves him or herself to their fate, but the family most often has more difficulty. Sometimes they turn ugly and vindictive, other times they turn inward and introspective – they appear cold or cruelly detached. They hurt just as much, but often they don’t know how to talk about their pain.
- How do you relax?
I like to read, which sounds crazy given all the paperwork I just talked about, but as long as its light and meaningless it helps me get my mind off work. And I’ve recently taken up gardening, so yeah, there’s that.
- What do you want to do that hasn’t been done yet?
I want to find the cure to at least one cancer that’s plagued us for a while. That doesn’t sound like much, but since they all operate in similar ways, finding the key to one might turn out to be a skeleton key that unlocks all of them. I figure I should aim for the moon and if I miss, at least I’m headed for the stars.
- How clear is your desk, and how clear is your signature?
Neither is clear, not at all. At. All.
- Any last minute health tips?
Go for a jog, or at least a walk. Don’t be afraid of salad instead of a burger. Unless its the chicken Caesar from the hospital cafeteria. Be afraid of that one. Very afraid.
- How long have you been in law enforcement?
About ten years or so.
- Was there anything else you ever wanted to do in life?
No, not really. I’ve always wanted to be the kind of guy who saves the day, and police work seemed to be the natural fit for that.
- What’s the worst thing you’ve encountered in that time?
Definitely the Richard Morell incident. That was a seriously fucked up man, and not in a good way. I got to read the coroner’s reports on the corpses they found in his house, and he was a really bad dude. Wicked. It was …
Well, when I saw what was in his trunk, I felt my skin crawl, but when I read the reports of what was in his house, I couldn’t finish it. I’ve never had a professional document that I couldn’t finish because I was too creeped out by it. Except for him. He was a living demon, there’s no other words for something like that. He wasn’t human anymore.
- How do you feel about that arrest? What were you thinking at the moment?
Well, it wasn’t really an arrest, so to speak. I mean, it was, he was certainly arrested from further action, [chuckle] but … I feel good about it. Really good. Wish I could do something for the families, but you can’t have everything.
- That’s a case where it was clear, at least from the news reports, that he disobeyed your order to open the trunk. Should the public always obey a policeman? Are there any circumstances where they shouldn’t?
No, not really. I mean you could come up with some pretty extreme theoreticals, but those never happen in real life. We’re out there looking out for the public good, so when we ask you for something, it isn’t really an ask, you know? There’s a reason we need to know, and it is for your own good. A lot of people try to assert a right to privacy, especially if they’re trying to hide something, but they forget that if I really want to, I’m getting in your trunk, house, whatever. You can’t stop me, and even if you wanted to suppress evidence with some sleazeball lawyer, the judge sides with the law most of the time. Best to just do what I say and get the pain over with.
- What is your personal firearm?
Glock 19. I like the way it feels in my hand, and I’m good at putting rounds on target. I’m a big guy, so it conceals easily on me. I’ve also got a deer rifle and an AR-15 that I use for target shooting.
- What’s a day look like for you, typically?
There’s a morning briefing around 5 AM or so, then out on traffic patrol for most of the morning. Sometimes it’s court appearances, but I usually break for lunch around 11 or so and get something on the downtown mall, then eat it at the station while I do some paperwork. Then it’s out again in the afternoon, and done by about four, after the reports are filed and the bureaucrats satisfied.
- What do you want from life?
Happiness, same as everyone else. An ordered society is a happy one, so if I can do my part to build that order, then good, I’ll feel happy about myself and what I’ve built.
- How do you feel about your family, now that you’re an adult?
We don’t talk much – my parents, that is. We talk, but not often. My brother is completely estranged from them, but he and I keep in touch. I’m sort of the bridge between two land masses that isn’t crossed very much, as far as they’re concerned.
- What do you want from life?
Success, same as everyone? What does that look like – um, a good bank balance, nice family that is mellow and not wound up all the time, and not ending up like some of the patients I treat. I’m a nurse, so I get to see some pretty nasty stuff sometimes. Fun!
- If you were granted three wishes, what would you ask for?
My parents and my brother to reconcile, healing for my terminally ill patients, and, um … a million dollars, tax free. Especially that last one, it’s the most realistic.
- What three things would you take to a Desert Island?
A transceiver radio, a small boat, and a survival kit. I’m not into getting abandoned on small islands. Or just not go in the first place.
- How do you fall in love? At first sight? Over a long period?
Uh, yes? I’ve never really had … well, there’s this one … next question, please?
- How do you decide if you can trust someone? Experience with others? With this person? First impressions? Intuition? Do you test the person somehow? Or are you just generally disposed to trust or not to trust?
I trust when I know it will be reciprocated. Like when someone trusts me first, I’ll definitely trust them.
And when do you trust someone first?
Yeah. I’d definitely trust them if they trust me first.
- Describe yourself to me.
Almost tall, fat boobs, not quite skinny waist. Blonde eyes, blue hair.
- What do you consider are your strengths?
I’m daring. I do things most people might consider crazy, but I think them through first, so they aren’t actually crazy.
- What do you consider your weaknesses?
Whatever they are, I don’t share them with strangers.
- What is one physical attribute you are proud of?
My boobs. They’re fantastic, I know it, and I don’t mind saying it.
- What one physical attribute would you change?
I think I would like to try being a redhead.
- What’s the worst thing you’ve ever done? Why?
I’d rather not talk about it. I may be under surveillance.
- Describe your ideal mate.
Someone who trusts me enough to grow with me and I with them.
DRAGONSLAYERS 1 SPOILERS!!! YOU’VE BEEN WARNED!!! Continuity geeks: this happens after the trial, but before that thing that happens. It’s non-canonical.
John Lillard*: Welcome to News in the Spotlight. I’m your host, John Lillard. Tonight’s guest joins us via telephone to talk about his recent acquittal on charges of selling drugs. Please welcome Scott Philipson.
Scott: It’s nice to be here, thanks.
Today is the 2014 Virginia Festival of the Book’s Annual Book Fair! I will be at the Charlottesville Omni Hotel, signing copies of the book for ten dollars – a 25% savings off Amazon!
If you’ve come to the site from the address on the bookmark, the first chapter is available for free. Click the ‘free excerpt’ link to the right. Enjoy!
In The Dragonslayers Vol. 1, an article from Cancer Research discussing THC and its effects on Pancreatic Cancer is passed back and forth between two of the characters. In that same journal there is another article on the effects of THC on Breast Cancer cells. One of the authors of that article, Dr. Christina Sanchez, discusses the findings in this video.
But remember: <sarcasm>there’s no medical basis for rescheduling marijuana. It’s a dangerous drug that can kill you.</sarcasm>
The Virginia Festival of the Book starts today and runs through this Sunday. I will be at the Annual Book Fair this Saturday, March 22nd, from 9 AM to 4 PM at the Omni Hotel on the Charlottesville Downtown Mall. Signed copies of The Dragonslayers, Volume 1 will be available for $10, a 33% discount off of the list price. Come by and get your copy!
I’m also working on putting together a couple discussion groups in Charlottesville that will feature character sketches, readings, and discussions about the War On Drugs and Liberty Fiction in general. Watch this space or join the Mailing List to learn more.
From the back cover
A clerical error. A loss. An opportunity. A hope. A pursuit…
When Scott Philipson loses his parents to a no-knock drug raid on the wrong house, he turns in desperation to selling marijuana to make ends meet. He gets plenty of help from his girlfriend Carley, but can he evade the grasp of Officer William Cavanaugh? The stakes rise when a doctor approaches him with an offer he shouldn’t refuse…
About the author
Matthew Maynard was born and raised in Arizona. In 2000 he graduated from the University of Arizona with a Bachelors of Science in Computer Engineering and a loathing for his arch-nemesis, the Fourier Transform.
After marrying his high school girlfriend in 2004 they moved to Virginia, where he continued his career as a programmer and developed his skills as a writer in his spare time. His first novel, The Dragonslayers Vol. 1: The Righteous and the Lawless, was born in the mayhem-filled month of November 2010 during National Novel Writing Month. Four years, several revisions, and one child later, he finished the manuscript. It is available through Amazon in paperback and Kindle formats.
“I’m excited about this new venture,” the author said. “This is the first novel in a series of at least three. I want to use this series to illustrate the loss of liberty we’ve seen in this country and suggest ways to remedy that.”
The author promotes his writing at his website, www.MatthewMaynard.net. He will be available at the Annual Book Fair for the 2014 Virginia Festival of the Book on Saturday, April 22nd, 2014, signing copies of his new release. The event will be held at the Omni Hotel, 212 Ridge McIntire Road, Charlottesville, Virginia 22903.
Series: The Dragonslayers
Paperback: 296 pages
Publisher: CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform; 1 edition (March 11, 2014)